How to Prevent Camera Lens from Fogging at Night

The best way to keep your camera lens from fogging at night is to acclimate your gear to the environment. One way to do this is by leaving your gear outside your camera bag before it’s time to use it.

I’m Caleb, and I have over five years of photography experience. I’ve mainly specialized in sports photography, which has given me plenty of lessons in working under various conditions to capture the best results.

In this article, I’ll explain how to avoid your camera lens getting fogged up at night. If you’ve ever encountered this problem, keep reading for easy methods to avoid it.

Tips to Prevent Camera Lens from Fogging at Night

Before covering the fixes for this problem, let’s look at the reason lenses fog up in the first place. The most common reason is a shift in temperature, leading to condensation. This condensation, of course, is manifested as the annoying ‘fog.’

If this happens to you, don’t just try to wipe the fog away. It won’t get rid of the condensation. Instead, it will just move around the surface of the lens to create streaks and can even lead to small scratches on the surface of the glass.

The best way to deal with the condensation is to leave it be and let it go away by itself over time. Usually, this shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes. There are, however, methods to avoid ending up here, to begin with.

1. Acclimate Your Gear

The best way to proactively avoid lens fogging is to acclimate your camera gear to the environment. That means exposing your equipment to the outside temperature before you actually need to use the camera.

For example, if you’re taking pictures during winter, and the temperature outside is much colder than indoors, you can leave your gear outside for 10 minutes before using it. By the time you actually pick up the lens, it should be acclimated to the weather.

2. Leaving Your Gear Out of The Bag

Your camera bag is an obstacle to getting your gear acclimated. The air inside a zipped-up camera bag is stagnant, and your lens won’t quickly adjust to your new surroundings while it’s still in the bag.

You can deal with this problem by simply taking your gear out of your bag before using it. At the very least, opening up your camera bag and letting some air in is a step up from the alternative.

3. Using a Microfiber Cloth

Removing fog from your camera lenses is hard once it’s already there. Your best bet is to avoid it in the first place instead of fighting it after the fact. But if that fails, it is possible to use a microfiber cloth to wipe away some of the fog.

Obviously, you should ensure you’re using a cloth designed for this type of thing. You should also make sure the materials are of the highest quality. 

While it might be tempting to buy any random cleaning cloth, you don’t want to scratch your $1,000 lens with a poorly made cloth that only costs a few dollars.


Here are some frequently asked questions about the subject of lens fogging.

Why Is There Condensation On My Lens at Night?

In short, condensation happens on your lens thanks to a sudden change in temperature. The best way to avoid it is to allow your lens to get used to the new temperature.

How Do You Beat Lens Fogging?

Lens fog is hard to get rid of once it appears. The best ways to beat lens fogging are to wait it out or to avoid it in the first place through acclimation.

How Do I Stop Security Camera Lenses from Fogging Up?

If a security camera lens keeps fogging up, you may have luck with adding a silica packet to the device. This absorbs moisture from the air, which in turn cuts down on condensation and, by extension, fogging.

Final Thoughts

Condensation causes lenses to fog after temperature changes, but spending more time in the new temperature will quickly eliminate this. It’s also easy to avoid this problem entirely by getting your gear used to the new temperature before it’s time to use it.

Do you have any methods of your own for avoiding lens fog? Let us know in the comments!

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