How to Clean Fibre Connections

Fibre N cleaning pad

This guide demonstrates the ways in which the fibre connections for PPM Test products can be cleaned.

For Sentinel 3 optical ports, Neutrik connectors are used. For point2point products, the standard optical port is FC/APC. Details for cleaning both types of products can be found here.

Sentinel 3 Tx & Rx Unit Fibre Connectors

The Sentinel 3 cleaning kit (PPM part number: 72796) contains all of the cleaning equipment detailed here. These items can also be purchased separately (contact us).

Depending upon the selected product, the Sentinel 3 Tx and Rx optical ports will be either duo/quad core, or MTP. To clean the Sentinel 3 connector socket, use the dry cleaning tools.

For Standard Duplex LC connectors (Tx1 and Tx8 – Duo, Rx1 and Rx2 Duo and Quad) use the IBC cleaner. For MPO/MTP (RX6) connectors use the MTP in bulkhead cleaner.

Insert the cleaner into the socket and push until you hear a click. Once this has been heard you can remove the cleaner. The socket has now been cleaned.

Sentinel 3 dry cleaning tools

Cleaning Sentinel 3 connector sockets

Sentinel 3 Fibre Connectors (deep cleaning)

Occasionally, depending on usage, it may be necessary to deep clean the Neutrik Fibre connectors. This involves removing the connector receptacles to access the internal fibres in the cable. The four images below details which Stickler cleaning tool is required to clean each type of fibre.

MCC-S12 stickler fibre cleaning tool

MCC-S12 for cleaning LC end face

MCC XMT stickler fibre cleaning tool

MCC-XMT for cleaning MPO fibres

MCC S25 stickler fibre cleaning tool

MCC-S25 for cleaning exposed fibre ferrules

Stickler fibre cleaning fluid

Cleaning fluid (for use with cleaning sticks)

To deep clean the Sentinel 3 fibre connectors, with one hand pull the spring washer towards the end of the connector and, using the other hand, rotate the body of the connector anti-clockwise (ensure the fibre cable itself does not rotate while actioning this).

When the fibre is exposed, use the ends of the stickler pads to gently clean the ends of the fibre. The stickler pads are supplied with the cleaning kit, but are also available separately.

An example of how to expose and clean the fibres using the sticklers:

Rx1, Rx2, Rx6 Heavy Duty Cable

Pull the spring washer towards the end of the connector. Rotate the body of the connector anti-clockwise. The internal Duo (Rx1), Quad (Rx2) or MPO/MTP (Rx6) can now be cleaned.

To refit the connector, pull the spring washer towards the end of the connector and rotate the body clockwise to tighten.

Exposing RX heavy duty cable

RX1, RX2 Lightweight Cable

The Lightweight Cable (Rx1, Rx2) can also be accessed in the same way as the heavy duty cable.

Remove the dust cap. Pull the spring washer towards the end of the connector and rotate the body of the connector anti-clockwise.

Exposing RX light duty cable

Cleaning point2point receptacles and fibres

point2point products utilise the FC/APC connector. This connector is designed to lock in place and prevent dirt and dust ingress.

In order to clean the cables, a cleaning kit needs to be purchased from PPM Test.

To clean the optical receptacle, use the sticklers provided with the cleaning kit, and optionally the cleaning fluid too, as shown here.

point2point optical cleaning

A demonstration of how the cleaning should be actioned within the kit is shown below:

Fibre cleaning demonstration

  1. Peel the plastic cover from an unused ‘N’ cleaning pad.
  2. Hold the connector between your thumb and forefinger.
  3. Clean the connector using the pressure by swiping in a pendulum motion through each segment of the ‘N’ shape, following the diagram.
  4. Do not swipe the same space twice.

Fibre N cleaning pad


For any technical issues not covered by this guide, please contact our dedicated Technical Support team, by emailing or by phoning +44 (0) 1793 784389.

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