Extreme Cold Weather Condition – Take Extra Care of your Camera System

NikonD300

As we approach the Winter Season, we would like to give our Club Members a bit of advice regarding the extreme cold weather conditions and the care of their camera system.  Here are a few tips for you to keep in mind…

When migrating your camera system from a warm interior environment into a cold exterior environment, you must take some precaution with your camera system.  Never directly introduce your camera into the cold weather.

  • The glass on the front lens may fog up causing condensation to build on the interior side of the lens.  This will lead to mold and fungus growing on the inside of your lens in the Spring.  The camera system needs to slowly be introduce into the cold weather by either wrapping a towel around the camera body and letting it sit outside for a few minutes or leaving the camera inside the camera bag, place the camera bag outside unzipped and slightly open for a few minutes.  Both methods will allow the cold air to migrate to the camera body slowly. ( A little bit of a Science lessons – Cold air moves from cooler environments towards warmer environments.)
  • Batteries will drain twice as fast in the colder environment as compared to an interior environment.  Remember to fully charge your camera battery before you decide to take it outside.  This is also true for all the batteries that you use for your flashes, remote triggering devices, and battery grips.
  • The bigger your lens is like a 70-200mm, the more glass it has on the inside and the more surface area on the outside that is exposed to the weather.  Cold temperatures make things contract, especially metal and plastic.  Thus, we do not recommend using your very expensive, long lens outdoors in extreme cold weather conditions unless it has a protective sleeve around it.  Once the frame begins to contract and expand, this may cause the gears, motor, and seals within the lens to become loose or misaligned.  Thus, this would cause your lens to not focus property or zoom properly.  A Prime lens would be safer to use than a Zoom lens.
  • NEVER, exchange lens while outside in the extreme cold conditions.  The minute you open up the interior body of the camera, the cold air can get sucked into the camera body and fog up your sensor and the interior glass element of the lens.

Nikon_70-200mm-lens

Finally, you must take the same precautions when introducing the camera system back into warmer environments.  For the same reasons, you must slowly introduce the camera when migrate back indoors to prevent condensation buildup and rapid expansion of the camera system.

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