What Causes Night Vision To Damage – Complete Guide 2023

Night visions are essential for hunters, military forces, and various other professionals. But just like other technical equipment, night vision can also get damaged so you need to know what causes night vision To be damaged. 

A damaged night vision will not give you clear vision at night, making it useless. Therefore, it is crucial to take care of these devices and use them safely to protect them from any kind of damage.

To maintain your night vision, you need to know what causes night vision damage. In this article, we have discussed the factors that cause night vision to get damaged and various methods to make your night vision reusable if it gets damaged.

Causes of Night Vision To Get Damaged

The following factors can make your perfectly fine working night vision device. It’s because several parts of the NV devices are sensitive to these factors, and even if only one part gets impaired, the NV doesn’t function properly.

1. Exposure to strong light

Created for seeing in the dark, it is not a good decision to expose your night vision to bright light. If a night vision device is exposed to bright or strong light, it will burn the image intensifier tube as it is designed only to amplify low light

Once the image intensifier tube is burned out, it won’t work, and nothing will be visible from it in the dark. Therefore, do not take the risk and never face your NV device towards a source of bright light such as a bulb, torchlight, etc. otherwise, you will need to repair it, and that is going to cost you a lot.

2. Using high-voltage batteries

Every model and generation of night vision needs a more or less voltage depending on how powerful it is. Also, different night vision devices need specific voltage. If you use a high-voltage battery with a device that is incapable of handling such high voltage, it may get damaged.

3. Damage to the lens

The objective lens of an NV allows you to see through the device. If the lens of an NV gets damaged or broken, you will need to buy new ones.

The lens can be damaged if a sharp or heavy object happens to touch it. Besides, there is a special kind of sensitive coating on both lenses of an NV device. This coating is specifically for making the device waterproof or Water resistant. This coating can also be damaged by your finger or anything else.

4. Damage by Water or by dropping

Although most of the NV devices available now are waterproof and have a rubber-armored coating on them, still a few models without any coatings get damaged if you use them in the rain or fog or if they get dropped from your hands.

Water and fog not only make the view unclear but also permanently damage the lens. 

Once any part of the device gets damaged or broken, you will need to find a new part of the same size and shape.

5. Trying your own techniques to repair it

Night vision devices are delicate and require to be handled with care. If you are a beginner or do not know how to fix the device. You should not try to repair it by yourself. 

Also, some parts of the device, such as image intensifier tubes, require specific tools to be repaired, so you can not do it on your own.

Measures To Prevent Damaging Your Night Vision Devices:

Night visions are expensive, and no one likes to put money on something and damage it in a short span of time. This might happen if you don’t have proper knowledge about night visions and use them for the first time. 

We are here to guide you about what you shouldn’t be doing if you want your NV device to last long.

Night Vision Care and Maintenance:

Always follow the user’s manual

Every NV device comes with a user manual to instruct you about the do’s and don’ts of using the device. Carefully read the instructions when you open the device and ask an expert’s opinion for anything you can’t figure out about it.

Do not expose it to bright light.

Bright lights can badly damage your night vision as the image intensifier tube of a night vision is supposed to amplify dim light, and if bright light enters it, it becomes dangerous for the lens. Therefore, keep your device away from bright light.

You might find a few models that can automatically turn off when the device is exposed to bright light, but it would still impact the device slowly

Clean your NV carefully.

You need to clean the tube and lens of the NVs from time to time. But always remember to use a clear and soft piece of cloth or simply the lens paper, which is also used to clean the cameras. 

Avoid using your fingers or anything rough to clean the device, as it would leave a scratch on the lens.

Take care of the lens.

Keep your lens covered when not in use to keep them protected from dirt and dust particles. Regularly clean the lens carefully. Do not carry the device without a bag or strap to avoid dropping it during your trip.

Get to know about your NV device’s features.

For professionals, waterproof and fog proof NVs are better as they need to use them outdoors in different weather conditions, and the rain and fog can make the view blurry other than making them dirty.

Also, always learn about the various features of your night vision before starting to use it. This will also make it easier for you to control the device.

Turn off the device when not in use.

As night vision devices are powered by batteries, you should turn them off when not using them; otherwise, the battery power will drain.

The four different generations of night vision have different life expectancies of 1000 to 10,000 hours, and after that, you will need to change the batteries. Also, you can keep the batteries out if the device is not being used for a long span of time.


Night vision devices are very helpful devices, but they can get damaged easily. Thus, the above considerations are necessary for professionals. 

These considerations are not at all difficult for a simple user, nor do they cause you anything. Besides, they will save you a lot of money. However, you might still need to change the parts of the night vision from time to time.


Normally, night vision goggles do not burn out. But continuous usage of an image of bright light for a long span of time might cause it to burn out.

You can replace any part of a night vision device, including the night vision tubes. Various tubes are available for generation 1,2, and 3-night visions in the markets. You can find one that will suit you the best for your device as well as your budget.

When the night vision is powered off, it means that the image intensifier tube that intensifies the light is not working. Therefore, there is no way that a turned-off night vision can be damaged until it is dropped down.

The life expectancy of a Gen 2 and Gen 3 night vision is between 2000 hours to 5000 hours. But if you are an amateur, a Gen 1 night vision with a life expectancy of 1000 hours will be suitable for you.

Additional Questions

What causes the deterioration of night vision?

The decline of night vision or difficulties in seeing under low light conditions can be associated with various factors. Primarily, it could be a sign that you require new glasses or change in your current glasses prescription. However, **it might also be due to certain medical conditions like cataracts, dry eye syndrome or even diabetes**. In other words, if you are experiencing trouble with your night vision, it is critical to consider all these possibilities.

Which vitamin deficiency contributes to problems with night vision?

Deficiency of any vitamin can have detrimental effects on your health, but when it comes to night vision, **Vitamin A deficiency** is a primary concern. This is because Vitamin A plays a critical role in our ability to see the full spectrum of light. Our eyes rely on specific pigments for the retina to function appropriately – these pigments are produced with the help of Vitamin A. Hence, a lack of this vitamin halts the production of these indispensable pigments, resulting in night blindness.

How to restore night vision?

You’ve not provided a detailed answer here, but I’d suggest practicing good eye health habits such as regular check-ups, eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins, not straining your eyes, and using good lighting. Lens corrections or surgery may restore vision in some cases. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice.

Does night blindness worsen with age?

Age is indeed a factor that can impact your ability to see in dim light. As we grow older, our eye muscles, like the rest of our muscles, tend to weaken and operate less effectively. This impacts our night vision capacity. Moreover, Rod cells – the photosensitive cells in our retina crucial for low light vision – progressively decline as we age. So, handedly, **aging can make night vision worse due to weakened eye muscles and fewer Rod cells**.

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