Beginner One or two newbie questions on camera care

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#1
To avoid spamming with lots of threads I thought I'd ask one or two (pretty much yes or no answer) noob questions here. Apologies in advance if the answer should be blatantly obvious, but I say if you don't know, ask. Yeah? :)

1) Should I remove the battery from the camera when not in use?
2) As above for memory card.
3) Although my camera (D5100) is not weather sealed can I still use it in the rain and snow?
4) Can you affect a weather seal of your own by using Vaseline or similar without damaging the camera, if so how would you do that? Or would a cover be all that's required?
 
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Name
Alan
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#2
If it helps...

- I remove the batteries as I find that if I don't they slowly drain in the camera.
- I leave the memory card in as being in the camera doesn't seem to affect it in any way but repeated removals and insertions could possibly / potentially / maybe lead to wear on the contacts or mechanism.
- I've never had a weather sealed camera but I've never had any issues despite using my kit in any and all conditions, I just use common sense precautions.
- I've never tried smearing stuff on and I don't think I'd recommend it as if you start some of it is going to find its way in somewhere.
 
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Kev
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#3
re:4)
A plastic bag with a hole cut in it for the lens and secured with an elastic band around the lens hood works well, the other standby is the shower cap which is normally supplied in hotels to keep the camera dry between shots.
 
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Darran, Daz or ****
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#4
To avoid spamming with lots of threads I thought I'd ask one or two (pretty much yes or no answer) noob questions here. Apologies in advance if the answer should be blatantly obvious, but I say if you don't know, ask. Yeah? :)

1) Should I remove the battery from the camera when not in use?
2) As above for memory card.
3) Although my camera (D5100) is not weather sealed can I still use it in the rain and snow?
4) Can you affect a weather seal of your own by using Vaseline or similar without damaging the camera, if so how would you do that? Or would a cover be all that's required?
1. Lithium batteries are not like alkaline batteries, they don't leak, I've left a battery in a camera unused for months without a problem.
2. A memory card is basically a piece of silicon, lots of people leave micro SD cards in their phones.
3. With caution yes, obviously you wouldn't try and use it unprotected with heavy rain.
4 Do NOT even consider this! You can buy various rain covers ranging from basic polythene ones to more elaborate ones, some people have been known to use bin liners.
I used the polythene type in Alaska with a Canon 50D and 70-200L IS f4 when I was on a boat whale watching and the weather was awful.
 
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Alan
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#5
1. Lithium batteries are not like alkaline batteries, they don't leak, I've left a battery in a camera unused for months without a problem.
Same here. I've never had a problem with a battery in a camera other than the battery draining. Some cameras seem to drain the battery even when they're turned off and some don't seem to. If the OP's camera doesn't drain the battery when it's turned off then all well and good :D
 

sirch

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Chris
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#6
I only remove the batteries to charge them but then I have more than one battery for each camera so they do get rotated

I take the card out to copy the images to my PC but always try to put it back because it is too easy to go out without the card. Again the cards tend to get rotated, I always have more than one card with me (unless I forgot :().

It depends on the weather and how long, also (I guess) how long before you can get it dry again. I have had non weather sealed bodies and lenses out in heavy rain for a few minutes at a time but I wouldn't, say, go on a 6 hour hike, get the camera wet and then let it stay wet for 6 hours, even if it is in a dry bag in the rucksack, once it is wet I imagine capillary action will pull the water deeper into the camera so getting it dry fairly quickly after getting it wet seems like a good idea to me. That said it depends how wet, a couple of rain drops is fine, half an hour's heavy rain is probably not so good. Yesterday I had a non-weather sealed lens out for a probably a couple of hours in light-ish showers and it was fine. A few weeks ago I had a different lens out in rain for 20 mins and it seemed OK, after letting it dry for a day I turned it on and got an error, fortunately removing the lens from the camera, cleaning the contacts and putting it back solved the error. So it's up to you how much risk you want to take...

There are loads of covers available on Amazon/Ebay, I'd use one of those. You don't know how something like Vaseline will affect the finish of your camera over a long period of time, e.g. the it may soften the glue that holds the rubber on the focus ring, etc.
 
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Darran, Daz or ****
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#7
I take the card out to copy the images to my PC but always try to put it back because it is too easy to go out without the card. Again the cards tend to get rotated, I always have more than one card with me (unless I forgot :().
I expect most of us have done that so we've learned by having more cards in our bags :D

You don't know how something like Vaseline will affect the finish of your camera over a long period of time, e.g. the it may soften the glue that holds the rubber on the focus ring, etc.
I'm not sure if I read it on here or another forum but years ago I remember someone returned a camera for warranty repair but they were refused a repair under warranty as the user had smeared vaseline around lens on the body seal and it had leaked into the body smearing the sensor etc.
What tickled me was that he really couldn't understand what he'd done wrong.
 
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#10
Cameras do not really need much in the way of active care. If I have been out in damp weather I will leave the camera sitting in a warm room overnight before putting it 'away'. I occasionally blow on the front of the lens to remove any dust and that is about it.

I do not regularly clean the lens or the sensor (I have never cleaned a sensor in 14 years of using a digital camera). I find not abusing the kit is sufficient.
 
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Andrew
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#11
Lithium batteries don't like being discharged and left flat. It will impact their life. It is a good idea to charge the battery after use and before any long term storage. If you keep lithium batteries topped up and avoid full discharges, they will perform better. This applies to mobile phone batteries to.

Nicads are different. They like being fully cycled.

Erty
 
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Dave
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#13
No problem about you asking CJ.

I have never in 9+ years taken the battery out of my camera when it is not in use.

The only time I remove it is when it need charging and I replace it with another. I don't have a card reader so I also have hardly ever taken the card out.

As above, you can use your camera in the rain and snow, but be careful, and Vaseline is definitely a no-no.

Just enjoy taking photos... and post some up here.

Dave
 
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#14
To avoid spamming with lots of threads I thought I'd ask one or two (pretty much yes or no answer) noob questions here. Apologies in advance if the answer should be blatantly obvious, but I say if you don't know, ask. Yeah? :)

1) Should I remove the battery from the camera when not in use?
2) As above for memory card.
3) Although my camera (D5100) is not weather sealed can I still use it in the rain and snow?
4) Can you affect a weather seal of your own by using Vaseline or similar without damaging the camera, if so how would you do that? Or would a cover be all that's required?
Totally up to you.

Improvements in technology means battery is less likely to leak. It will be fine to leave it in camera for a few days or a few weeks. If it is a few months, then it is up to you.

Just remember that even when turned off, the camera will still use a tiny battery power, mostly to keep the clock running, or keep the settings (earlier digital cameras would reset most settings when you've removed the battery), or even display the number of frames used/remaining showing on the LCD.
 
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Rob
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#16
1. Lithium batteries are not like alkaline batteries, they don't leak, I've left a battery in a camera unused for months without a problem.
2. A memory card is basically a piece of silicon, lots of people leave micro SD cards in their phones.
3. With caution yes, obviously you wouldn't try and use it unprotected with heavy rain.
4 Do NOT even consider this! You can buy various rain covers ranging from basic polythene ones to more elaborate ones, some people have been known to use bin liners.
I used the polythene type in Alaska with a Canon 50D and 70-200L IS f4 when I was on a boat whale watching and the weather was awful.
Exactly what I would have said. For rain protection Optech rain sleeves (from Amazon) are what I mostly use. Been out in heavy rain in the lakes and peaks a few times without any problems. One thing to look out for is causing condensation inside the rain sleeve. Taking warm hands out of gloves and placing inside the rain sleeve to operate the camera can cause quite a bit of condensation.

Here’s one I took using a rain sleeve in heavy rain. No problems and great for the price for occasional use.

Red Squirrel in the Rain by -Rob'81-
 
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Fraser White
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#17
Exactly what I would have said. For rain protection Optech rain sleeves (from Amazon) are what I mostly use. Been out in heavy rain in the lakes and peaks a few times without any problems. One thing to look out for is causing condensation inside the rain sleeve. Taking warm hands out of gloves and placing inside the rain sleeve to operate the camera can cause quite a bit of condensation.

Here’s one I took using a rain sleeve in heavy rain. No problems and great for the price for occasional use.

Red Squirrel in the Rain by -Rob'81-
Love this capture!!!
 
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