PvP Healers Guide to Cleansing

First published on Xam Xam Says, 15th November, 2017.

A PvP Healing Guide for Star Wars The Old Republic.

This is a Guide about Cleansing specifically for Healers (and DPS with a cleanse). I will not be discussing Purges in this Guide as they are an entirely different thing.

Cleansing is an important part of being a healer and a very handy tool at our disposal. Cleansing basically removes up to two negative effects on yourself or any friendly player you’ve selected.

So what are each of the healing classes cleansing abilities?

ClassCleanse AbilityAbility Icon
OperativeToxin Scan
CommandoField Aid

What negative effects can each healing class cleanse?


PvP Cleansing Basics

In PvP environments, your priority as a Healer (and DPS) is to Cleanse CC’s (Crowd Control Abilities)/Mezzes. The CC’s you can Cleanse will depend on whether you are a force or non-force users.

So what can each healer cleanse? Mercenary’s and Operatives can cleanse Tech CC’s (8-second duration) and Sorcerers can cleanse Force CC’s. All classes can Cleanse Mental CC’s.

Note: You can not Cleanse a CC that is on you. You have to rely on others to Cleanse you.

Here is a table listing the main things each healer class can cleanse and what the icons look like (on the Operations frame or your player frame).

ClassCleansable EffectIcon
Mercenary/Commando, Operative/ScoundrelFlashbang / Flash Grenade
Sleep Dart / Tranquilizer
Sorcerer/SageWhirlwind / Force Lift
Mind Trap / Mind Maze
AllIntimidating Roar / Awe
Concussion Charge / Concussion Missile

Here is what each CC animation looks like (open spoiler tags).

Concussion Charge/Missile Animations

Concussion Missile Animation

Concussion Charge Animation


Sleep Dart/Tranquilizer Animations

Sleep Dart Animation

Tranquilizer Animation


Flashbang/Flash Grenade Animations

Flashbang Animation

Flash Grenade Animation


Whirlwind/Forcelift Animations

Whirlwind Animation

Force Lift Animation


Mind Trap/Mind Maze Animations

Mind Trap Animation

Mind Maze Animation


Intimidating Roar/Awe Animations

Intimidating Roar Animation

Awe Animation


Advanced – Other Abilities that can be Cleansed

Once you’ve mastered the art of knowing which CC’s you can cleanse, there are also a few additional negative effects (debuffs) that are applied by various abilities by some classes that are cleansable. Generally, these aren’t that much of a priority to cleanse as you should always prioritise CC’s/Mezzes. In some scenarios, however, it can be helpful to cleanse yourself or an ally of a (non-CC) negative effect. For example, cleansing a ‘Slow’ or ‘Snare’ can be quite useful (be mindful of if you or your ally are standing in an AOE that’s causing the slow otherwise the cleanse will be wasted).

The best scenario for cleansing a Slow is if it’s on yourself or a teammate you’re grouped with or know. For example, if you have someone of a particular class attacking you and you notice that you’re slowed, depending on the class, you will be able to cleanse the Slow.

ClassAbilityEffect ClassIcon
Sorcerer/SageForce SlowForce
Assassin/ShadowForce SlowForce
Juggernaut/GuardianChilling Scream/Freezing ForceMental
Marauder/SentinelCrippling Slash/Leg SlashForce
Operative/ScoundrelSever Tendon/Tendon BlastTech
Sniper/GunslingerLeg ShotTech
Interrogation Probe/Explosive ChargeTech

Note that you can only cleanse the slow effect when you have Interrogation Probe/Explosive Charge on you. The Probe/Charge will remain on you and still do damage but at least you won’t be slowed.

Crippling Slash also has an additional negative effect (debuff) that reduces your healing received by 20% (icon and tooltip are pictured below).

Snipers/Gunslingers also have an ability called Shatter Shot/Flourish Shot that puts the same negative effect (pictured above) on you. So be mindful if you see the ‘Green man’ debuff on you. You should probably cleanse it, especially if you’re being focused.

Also, be mindful of AOE’s that put a Slow on you such as the Engineering Sniper’s Plasma Probe (Saboteur Gunslinger’s Incendiary Grenade) or the Shield Tech Powertech’s Oil Slick (Shield Specialist Vanguard’s Riot Gas). You are continually slowed while inside these AOE’s and even if you cleanse the Slow, it is immediately reapplied. So there’s no need to waste a Cleanse if you get stuck in one of these AOE’s.

And finally, keep in mind that unfortunately, SWTOR does not have a Cleansing priority system. So you have no way of targeting which negative effects you want to be Cleansed.


  • Soft Stun/Mezz/CC – an 8-second stun that breaks/ends when damage is taken.
  • CC – Crowd Control (see above definition).
  • Hard stun – a 4-second stun that does not break/end when damage is taken (not cleansable).
  • Slow – An ability that slows your movement.
  • Snare – An ability that impairs movement completely.

I’d like to thank Vasmi for her input on my guide! You can watch her Stream SWTOR at twitch.tv/vasmigaming.

I’d also like to thank Andynul for helping with various testing and for being a guinea pig for all the recording and screenshots I did for this Guide!

Thank’s for reading my Guide! If you have any questions or comments, let me know!