How to clean a potentiometer?
Just spray contact cleaner on it and wiggle it back and forth. :)
It hasn't vanished:
I have used CRC Electronic Contact Cleaner, to just plain old Windex to clean potentiometers.
It doesn't really matter that much what cleaner you use, provided that it doesn't leave behind any film. So I wouldn't use WD40 or anything that says that it lubricates.
- Soak it by spraying it with your favorite cleaner.
- Rotate it several times.
- Spray it some more to get anything that broke loose out.
- Repeat steps 2. & 3. as necessary.
- Let it dry completely.
After you have cleaned it you should put in some dielectric grease.
Isopropyl alcohol works well too - You can submerge the pot and give it a good soaking, then just turn the wiper backward and forward a few times to make sure it's well worked in. Then just leave it to dry before turning the electrical equipment back on.