Your flute should be cleaned inside EACH time it has been played.
This removes moisture from inside the tube and prevents it from causing damage to keys and pads. To do this you will need a cleaning rod (this is kept inside the flute case) and a small cleaning cloth. This is best kept in a music bag—not inside the case.
THE HEAD JOINT
Thread the tip of the cloth through the eye of the cleaning rod
Place the larger portion of the cloth over the tip of the rod and smooth the cloth so it remains flat against the rod without being too bulky.
Carefully remove the head-joint from the body and insert the cleaning rod with cloth into the head-joint. Very slowly continue to push the rod in until it reaches the end wall of the head-joint
It is VERY important not to push too hard when cleaning the head-joint as this can change the instruments intonation.
Twist rod so the cloth can wipe inside and remove.
Remove body from the foot-joint—taking care not to handle the key work at all. The rods and keys can be easily manipulated which can cause damage to its structure.
Insert cleaning cloth into the body (on the rod) and continue to push it the whole way through the body, removing from the opposite end. If it feels as though it is getting stuck, carefully remove, flatten the cloth (checking it is not too large) and start again.
THE FOOT JOINT
Clean the foot joint in the same manner as the body.
Check inside each piece to ensure it is dry and place into case.
Wash your face and hands before you play.
As a general rule not much cleaning is required on the outside of the flute. If your face and hands are clean this will help dramatically. You may use a soft polishing cloth on the lip plate or bodywork of the flute surrounding the keys to help remove grime and fingerprints. You should do this once a week as it is good for the flute and keep it looking shiny.
CARE IN THE HOME
Please keep your instrument inside its case when not in use. This not only prevents dust from building up on your flute but also helps protect it from accidents around the home. If it is inside its case and put away it will not be sat on, knocked off beds, benches etc. If there is a problem with your flute—DO NOT TRY TO FIX IT YOURSELF. Take it to your tutor and they may be able to fix it or they will advise where to take it to be repaired
Cleaning products can be purchased from all good Music Stores.