Remove a Stuck Lens Filter by Tapping It Lightly With Your Finger

Here’s a strange photography hack that may sound stupid and unbelievable… but it can actually work: if you have a filter that’s hopelessly stuck to the front of your camera lens, try lightly tapping it with your finger. The Koldunov Brothers show how it’s done in the 1-minute video above.

When a filter is frozen to your lens, you may naturally think that more force is what’s needed to free it. Even Canon recommends busting out a hammer and hacksaw for the most stubborn filters.

It may seem counter-intuitive, but sometimes what you actually need is some gentle coaxing. Try lightly tapping the edge of the stuck filter all around the circumference (and be patient, as it could take some time):

After tapping for a while, try twisting the filter off as you ordinarily would. You may be surprised to find that the filter has suddenly become unstuck!

The Koldunov Brothers tell PetaPixel that their trick was scoffed at when the video was first uploaded several months ago, but they have yet to find a stuck filter that can’t be freed with this strange technique. And as the months went by, comments started flooding in from grateful people who were surprised to find that it actually works. Here’s a sampling of the top comments:

“I thought this was the stupidest thing ever…then I tried it. You are a genius.”

“F*** you blew my mind I had a filter stuck for months I took it to camera repair stores and nothing, you are a god, thanks!”

“I kept flicking my filter for five minutes thinking that this video was BS, but then it finally worked. Thanks for the tip!”

“Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!! I’ve been attempting for years to (unsuccessfully…) remove a skylight filter from my old (but good…) Zuiko 180 f2,8. My last chance was to break the glass and cut the ring. With your method I removed it in 30 seconds!!!”

“You are a LEGEND. Thank you so so so so much. I thought I could never use my camera again. It worked after about 5-6 minutes!”

“It does really work. And not just work it works pretty smoothly without harming the lens or leaving any physical damage on it.”

Other users suggest using a pen or a utensil handle to tap on the filter instead of a finger.

“The problem of other methods is that it’s necessary to exert force,” the Koldunov Brothers tell PetaPixel “And if the lens is fragile, then you can damage it. This method is gentle and accurate. It’s long and tedious, but often works even for hopeless cases.”