Have a Filter Stuck On Your Lens? 4 Ways to Remove it Fast (VIDEO)

We've all experienced this frustrating problem, and it often occurs when shooting in the field: There's a stubborn filter on your lens that refuses to come off no matter how hard you try. This experience is not only unnerving, but it makes it impossible to change filters when the light or other conditions change.

This dilemma is often caused by using too much muscle when mounting the filter, while other times you were careless and cross-threaded the filter—damaging it's threads or those on the front of your lens. Even worse is when you drop the camera or bang the lens on a hard object, smashing the filter and the underlying lens mount.

Instead of freaking out when the foregoing occurs, all you have to do is remember the four tricks you'll learn in today's video from the Signature Edits YouTube channel— a great source of videos on image-editing, shooting techniques, and solutions to common gear problems. In this episode the founder of the channel Ryan demonstrates what he says are "the four easiest and safest ways to loosen a jammed filter no matter how tight it is."

One trick works great when the filter is slightly too tight and you can't get a great grip because of sweaty hands. Another is useful when the filter is super tight and works best when you're at home. The third is a go-to option when you need even more force to get the job done. Method #4 involve taking a deep breath and doing a bit of surgery, and it's reserved for those times when the other three fail.

The first trick is super effective when you're at home and dealing with a filter that extremely tight or slightly damaged. The solution involves employing a soft, rubbery mousepad, but not in the way you might think. Instead of using the mousepad to get a better grip, here's what you do: Leave the mousepad on your desk, hold the camera with the lens pointed down on the pad, and then press firmly while and rotating the camera to unscrew the filter.

The second approach  is pretty much foolproof when shooting in the field, and you just can't get a good grip because your hands are wet, dirty or greasy. This simply requires that you pull a thick rubber band out of your bag and stretch it over the outer ring of the filter. Then a quick counterclockwise turn usually does the job.

The last two techniques are increasingly more aggressive but either one or will definitely remove filters that are broken or bent. Just follow Ryan's advice  and you'll be able to get the darn thing off without any further damage to the delicate front of the lens.

The very popular Signature Edits YouTube channel offers videos on a wide variety of popular photography topics, so be sure to pay a visit when you have time to explore.