How to Care for an Oboe


Caring for an oboe is important because good care is reflected in an oboe’s sound quality. Moisture and gunk can build up if the oboe isn’t cleaned after each use. Before a musician learns to play an oboe, he needs to know how to care for it. Follow these steps to care for an oboe.

Remove the reeds after playing and soak them in hydrogen peroxide. This soaking kills germs and extends the life of your reeds. Dry them off and store them in the reed case.

Use a cleaning swab to clean moisture from inside your oboe after each use. Drop the weight on the swab down the bell and out the end. Gently pull it through the oboe. Do it more than once depending on how much moisture there is.

Fold the cleaning swab up and store it in your case. Dab cigarette papers on or in other areas of the oboe that may be holding moisture.

Polish the outside of the oboe and keys with a cleaning cloth. Use key oil to lubricate any stiff keys about once every six months.

Oil the tenon joint corks with pure lanolin instead of cork grease. Cork grease creates a buildup. You can purchase lanolin at the drugstore.

Check the bore of your oboe yearly and oil it if needed. The frequency of oiling the bore is a matter of personal preference, but shouldn't be done too often.


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