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Published on 20/06/2022

Maintaining Your Gas Detector

Although sourcing reliable and well-built gas detection solutions for your vessel should always be your priority to protect crews against the dangers of gas, your second should be keeping your gas detectors clean and well-maintained. 

Without proper care and attention, no piece of safety equipment can operate optimally and be relied upon to offer complete protection at all times. 

Portable gas detectors are used daily, often in dusty and dirty environments. They can quickly be subjected to a build-up of grime that could compromise their ability to identify levels of toxic gas in the air.

In this simple guide, we share quick and easy tips and advice to help you clean and maintain your gas detector – so it’s always primed and ready to protect at all times. 


Our collection of Portable Gas Detectors is a life-saving piece of equipment. Still, like any piece of technology, they need appropriate maintenance, attention and upkeep to allow them to do their job properly. Daily cleaning takes a matter of minutes but offers the following advantages which ensure your gas detector can function optimally at all times:

1/ Removal of any substances the gas detector has come into contact with that may harm the function of the sensors or monitor

2/ Removal of any bacteria left on the detector that could pose a risk to the health of the operative or those around them (something to be especially mindful of post-pandemic) 

3/ Removal of contaminants, including biological substances, which could produce an inaccurate reading 

Cleaning benefits vary depending on the type of area in which you work.

At sea, water ingress also poses a threat. Understanding the IP rating of your gas detector is essential when considering how you will clean it, as some are more protected than others, and water resistance can be impacted over time through daily use and exposure to certain cleaning products. 

Be sure to take some time to consider and put together an appropriate cleaning method for your gas detector, depending on its features and IP rating.


1/ Always switch your gas detector off before cleaning

2/Wash your hands thoroughly with a non-harmful substance (see list below for products to avoid when cleaning and handling your gas detector)

3/ Check your gas detector’s user manual for specific cleaning instructions which are safe for the model you are using 

4/ Carry out the cleaning process outdoors or under an extractor hood to avoid exposure to fumes 

5/ Once cleaning is complete, thoroughly and gently dry the gas detector unit with a soft towel 

6/ Leave the unit switched off for a short period post-clean. When you switch the gas detector back on, check that all sensors are sitting at 0ppm (or 20.9% for oxygen). 

Cleaning should be conducted regularly, with cold water and a sponge daily, with a full clean planned on at least a monthly schedule. If your gas detector gets particularly dirty sooner than this, it’s best to clean it earlier than your scheduled date as a precaution. Always remember to bump-test after each clean and before every use and calibrate in line with your manufacturer’s recommendations. 


Certain cleaning products, whilst effective in other areas, can cause serious damage to a gas detector due to their ingredients or the way they work. These include (but aren’t limited to):


*Rust inhibitors

*Glass and window cleaning solutions

*citrus-based cleaners 

 *Alcohol-based cleaners 

*Hand sanitisers

*Products containing methanol

*Anionic detergents 



These products shouldn’t be avoided only when cleaning your gas detector – contact should be limited as much as possible to avoid any impairment to its function as you go about your daily duties.

Your gas detector manufacturer should be able to recommend and even supply cleaning solutions which are safe to use with your specific model. 

Simple and effective gas detection solutions from Martek Marine

We know that life at sea can pose unique challenges requiring innovative and time-sensitive solutions. Whilst safety protocols are important and must be followed, having products that require less of your time and attention to offer the constant protection you need makes maintaining crew safety simpler and easier. 

Discover the difference with gas detection solutions from Martek Marine today.