Looking After Your Camera
Your camera requires a bit of regular care and maintenance. Some of the best places for you to take photographs are your camera's worst nightmare. The beach, for example, not only has salt water but sand which will get into all the smallest cogs in your camera and make a nauseating ratchet sound before killing it. Underwater housings or a disposable camera are good options.
Preventative measures always pay. Because cameras are fragile instruments a small, accidental bump can easily break your camera. Invest in a bag that offers a good level of protection from bumps and the environment.
Cameras don't like extreme temperatures. Cold drains their batteries much faster and can stop them working altogether. Extreme cold can also cause film to become brittle and snap and digital media to stop working. Ensure that if you are moving from a warm room to a very cold environment outside you should check for condensation. Hot conditions can ruin your film turning it bright pink in hours. Avoid leaving your camera or film in the full sun or other hot places like a car's glove compartment.
Refrigerating film is an excellent way to store it. Keep it sealed in the original pots and let it warm up unopened for 30 minutes before using it. Always process film as soon as possible after exposure.
Fungus is common in lenses. If you get fungus in a lens have it removed as soon as possible as fungus will damage the coating on the glass permanently. Store your camera equipment in a cool, dry area and pack them in an airtight box with silicon gel packs to remove the moisture. A tupperware-style container is ideal and cheap. If you don't have an airtight container consider wrapping the camera in an airtight plastic bag with a couple of silicon packs.
As mentioned in the Getting Started any lens capable of having a UV or Skylight filter on it should have one on AT ALL TIMES. It is considerably cheaper to replace a scratched filter than a lens.