What To Do With A Broken Camera Lens

Nothing is more soul-crushing than watching your favorite lens slip out of your hands and fall to the ground. Sometimes, the lens can be repaired. But other times, you have to shed a tear as you wave your lens goodbye. Rest in pieces.

Luckily though, you can still make use of your broken camera lens. Even though it will never be able to take a photo again, it can still be used for something else.

Join me as I take a look at what you can do with a broken camera lens.

What To Do With A Broken Camera Lens

Have a look below and some amazing and creative ways of repurposing a broken camera lens.

DIY Pen Holder

A very effective way of keeping all of your pens and pencils in one place, and also a great way to pay homage to your favorite lens that perished too soon. Christian Mohn took his broken Tamron 70-300 lens and turned it into a handy pen holder for his desk.

Flower Pot

Another great way to repurpose a broken camera lens and liven up your desk space. Kenneth Yung took his broken Nikon 18-55mm lens and turned it into a flower pot. A sturdy home for an otherwise fragile cactus plant.

DIY Telescope

Calling this a DIY project is a bit of a stretch because it takes a lot of skill to build this. gizmologist managed to turn this Minolta 500mm and turned it into a telescope. Fancy a bit of stargazing?

Lens Necklace

This is extremely creative and such an amazing use of lens parts. MarshmellowTree took parts of a broken lens and broken camera and made this lens necklace.

Macro Lens

This all depends on how broken your DSLR lens is, but like tastygiant, you can turn this Canon 50mm f/1.8 Mark II into a macro lens capable of taking amazing close-up shots. Very useful, especially if you don’t own a macro lens already.

Can You Repair A DSLR Camera Lens?

If you simply cannot let go of your camera lens and turn it into a flower pot, you might be wondering if it can be repaired. I once dropped a telephoto lens off the cliff and I had to go fish it out of the Atlantic, and even after all of that, I was curious if it can be resuscitated.

DSLR camera lenses can be repaired, but it depends on the lens and the extent of the damage caused to the lens. Mechanical faults can be repaired, however, if the lens’s glass is broken then it can’t be repaired and you would need to replace the lens.

How Much Does It Cost To Repair A Camera Lens?

Once again, this all depends on the extent of the damage caused to the lens, but you can expect to pay anything from $100 up to $250 to get a lens repaired. If the repair costs are close to what you paid for the lens itself, then you might need to consider replacing it altogether.


As you can see, all is not completely lost when your camera lens is completely broken. You have a few options for giving it a second life, albeit not really on the photography side of things.

One amazing way of repurposing a broken lens is turning it into a macro lens, especially if you don’t own a macro lens yet. Macro photography gives you the opportunity to be very creative, so why not try to convert your broken lens into a macro lens?

There might also be a chance that your broken camera lens can be repaired, except of course if the glass is broken. There’s no coming back from that. But if you suspect that it has a mechanical fault, let a professional technician look it at.