There are a few things that make it risky. The following are especially risky:
- Taking the word of clueless accidents-in-the-making who insist that it's OK to use cotton swabs to clean VCR heads.
- Using drug-store rubbing alcohol to clean VCR heads and parts.
- Using head cleaning tapes. I know that some people say they're OK now and then. I used one of those tapes only once, after which the video head replacement from the damage cost $196.00. Don't use the damn cleaning tapes, no matter who says you can. Besides, those heads were available 15 years ago. Forget about it today.
Google and the forum search utility are your friends:
Stuff for proper cleaning: