Are you a skateboarder looking to get the most out of your ride? Keeping your skateboard clean is critical to maximizing its performance and longevity. In this ultimate guide, we will take easy steps to ensure your skateboard stays in top shape.
Whether a beginner or a seasoned pro, cleaning your skateboard is simple yet essential, not only will a clean board make your tricks smoother, but it will also help prevent dirt and debris from causing damage to the bearings and wheels.
From removing dirt and grime to maintaining the grip tape, we’ll cover all the steps to keep your skateboard looking and performing its best. You’ll learn about the necessary tools and products and some handy tips and tricks for maintaining your board.
So, if you’re ready to take your skateboarding to the next level, dive into our ultimate guide and discover how to clean your skateboard easily. Get ready to experience maximum performance and ensure the longevity of your skateboard.
Why is cleaning your skateboard necessary?
Cleaning your skateboard is not just about aesthetics; it plays a crucial role in maintaining its overall performance and longevity. Here are the top reasons why cleaning your skateboard regularly should be a part of your skateboarding routine:
- Smooth and consistent performance: Dirt, grime, and debris can accumulate on your skateboard over time, affecting its performance. A dirty skateboard can make your tricks less smooth and hinder your overall riding experience. Keeping your board clean ensures it performs at its best, allowing you to execute tricks efficiently.
- Prevention of damage: Debris and dirt can cause significant damage to your skateboard’s moving parts, such as the bearings and wheels. When dirt gets into the bearings, it can increase friction and wear them out faster. Cleaning your skateboard regularly helps prevent this damage, ensuring that your skateboard lasts longer and saves you money on replacements.
- Maintaining grip: Grip tape is essential to your skateboard, providing traction and stability. Over time, dirt and grime can build up on the grip tape, making it less effective. Cleaning your grip tape allows you to maintain its grip, allowing for better control and fewer slip-offs.
Now that you understand the importance of cleaning your skateboard, let’s dive into the tools and materials you’ll need for the cleaning process.
Tools and materials needed for skateboard cleaning
Before you begin cleaning your skateboard, gathering the necessary tools and materials is essential. Here’s a list of items you’ll need to ensure a thorough and effective clean:
- Skateboard tool: A skateboard tool is a versatile tool that includes a variety of wrenches and screwdrivers. It allows you to easily remove and tighten the bolts on your skateboard, making it an essential tool for maintenance.
- Soft-bristle brush: A soft-bristle brush will help you remove dirt and debris from hard-to-reach areas of your skateboard, such as the trucks and wheels. Look for a brush with nylon bristles to avoid scratching your board.
- Microfiber cloth: A microfiber cloth is perfect for wiping down your skateboard after cleaning. It is gentle on the surface and absorbs water and dirt effectively.
- Skateboard cleaner solution: Specific skateboard cleaning solutions are available on the market and are designed to remove dirt and grime without damaging your board. Alternatively, you can create a DIY solution using mild soap and water.
- Bearing lubricant: You’ll need a bearing lubricant to keep your bearings running smoothly. Look for lubricants designed for skateboard bearings to withstand the high speeds and impact skateboarding entails.
Now that your tools and materials are ready move on to the step-by-step guide to cleaning your skateboard.
Step-by-step guide to cleaning your skateboard
Cleaning your skateboard involves several steps that are easy to follow. These steps will ensure a thorough cleaning that will enhance your skateboard’s performance and extend its lifespan. Let’s get started:
Step 1: Remove the trucks
Start using your skateboard tool to remove the trucks from the deck. This will allow you to clean each component separately and thoroughly.
Step 2: Clean the deck and grip tape
Your skateboard’s deck and grip tape are prone to accumulating dirt and grime, especially if you skate in parks or on the streets. Cleaning the deck and grip tape regularly will help maintain its appearance and functionality. Here’s how you can clean your skateboard grip tape and deck effectively:
- Removing dirt and debris: Use a soft-bristle brush to gently remove any loose dirt or debris from the deck and grip tape. Brush in long strokes, moving from one end of the board to another. This will help loosen any stuck-on dirt.
- Using a skateboard cleaner solution: Once you’ve removed the loose dirt, apply a skateboard cleaner solution or create your solution using mild soap and water. Dip the soft-bristle brush into the solution and gently scrub the deck and grip tape. Focus on areas with stubborn dirt or stains.
- Rinsing and drying: After scrubbing, rinse the deck and grip tape with clean water to remove the cleaner solution. Ensure that all the soap or cleaner residue is washed away. Use a microfiber cloth to dry the deck and grip tape thoroughly. Avoid leaving moisture behind, as it can damage the wood and grip tape.
By following these steps, you’ll keep your skateboard deck and grip tape looking clean and feeling grippy, allowing you to perform your tricks confidently.
Step 3: Clean the trucks
While the deck is drying, clean the trucks using the same soft-bristle brush, cleaner solution, or soap and water. Scrub all areas of the trucks, including the baseplate, hanger, and kingpin. Remove any dirt or debris that may have accumulated. Rinse the trucks with clean water and dry them thoroughly with a microfiber cloth.
Skateboard trucks are responsible for the turning and stability of your skateboard. Proper maintenance of the trucks will ensure optimal performance and control. Here are some tips for maintaining your skateboard trucks:
- Regularly tighten the bolts: Over time, the bolts that hold the trucks to the deck can loosen due to the vibrations and impacts of skateboarding. It’s essential to regularly check and tighten these bolts to ensure the trucks stay securely attached to the deck. Use your skateboard tool to tighten any loose bolts.
- Clean the trucks: Cleaning them is essential to remove dirt and debris affecting their performance. Use a soft-bristle brush, skateboard cleaner solution, or soap and water to scrub the trucks thoroughly. Pay attention to areas where dirt can accumulate, such as around the kingpin and pivot cup. Rinse the trucks with clean water and dry them thoroughly before reattaching them to the deck.
- Inspect for damage: Regularly inspect your trucks for any signs of damage, such as cracks or bent axles. If you notice any damage, it’s important to replace the affected parts to maintain the performance and safety of your skateboard.
These tips will keep your skateboard trucks in optimal condition, ensuring a smooth and controlled ride.
Read also: How to Tighten Skateboard Trucks
Step 4: Clean the wheels
Skateboard wheels are subjected to constant wear and tear, making them prone to accumulating dirt and debris. Cleaning and caring for your skateboard wheels will improve their performance and extend their lifespan. Here’s how you can clean and care for your skateboard wheels effectively:
- Removing the wheels: Start using your skateboard tool to remove the wheels from the trucks. This will allow you to clean each wheel thoroughly.
- Cleaning the wheels: Use a soft-bristle brush and a skateboard cleaner solution or soap and water to clean each wheel. Scrub the inside and outside of the wheels, removing any dirt or debris that may have accumulated. Pay attention to the areas around the bearings, as dirt can get trapped there. Rinse the wheels with clean water and dry them thoroughly before reassembling them with the bearings.
- Inspecting the wheels: While cleaning the wheels, take the opportunity to inspect them for any signs of wear or damage. Look for flat spots, cracks, or uneven wear patterns. It may be time to replace the wheels if you notice any significant damage.
- Rotating the wheels: To ensure even wear on your skateboard wheels, it’s a good idea to rotate them regularly. Switch the front wheels with the back wheels to distribute the wear and tear more evenly. This will help prolong the lifespan of your wheels and maintain a smooth ride.
Following these steps will keep your skateboard wheels clean and in good condition, allowing for a smoother and more enjoyable ride.
Step 5: Clean and lubricate the bearings
Your skateboard’s bearings play a vital role in ensuring a smooth ride. Over time, dirt and debris can accumulate in the bearings, causing them to slow down or become less responsive. Regular maintenance of your skateboard bearings will help keep them in optimal condition. Here’s how you can clean your skateboard bearings:
- Removing the bearings: Use your skateboard tool to remove the wheels from the trucks. Once the wheels are removed, use the skateboard tool or a bearing puller to remove the bearings from the wheels. Take note of the order in which the bearings are placed on each wheel.
- Cleaning the bearings: To clean the bearings, you can use a bearing cleaner solution or isopropyl alcohol. Pour the solution into a container and place the bearings inside. Close the container and shake it vigorously for a few minutes to remove dirt and debris. You can also use a bearing cleaning kit with a bearing cleaning unit to make the process easier. After cleaning, use a microfiber cloth to dry the bearings thoroughly.
- Lubricating the bearings: Once the bearings are dry, apply a few drops of bearing lubricant to each bearing. Ensure that the lubricant is designed explicitly for skateboard bearings, as other lubricants may not withstand the high speeds and impact of skateboarding. Spin the bearings to distribute the lubricant evenly.
Regularly cleaning and lubricating your skateboard bearings will maintain their performance and extend their lifespan, allowing for a smooth and enjoyable ride.
Step 6: Reassemble the skateboard
With all the components clean and dry, it’s time to reassemble your skateboard. Use your skateboard tool to reattach the trucks to the deck, ensuring all bolts are correctly tightened. Give the skateboard a final wipe-down with a microfiber cloth to remove any remaining moisture or dirt. Let’s explore some additional tips for keeping your skateboard in excellent condition.
Skateboard Maintenance tips: Storing and protecting
In addition to regular cleaning and maintenance, proper storage and protection of your skateboard are essential for its longevity. Here are some tips to help you store and protect your skateboard when it’s not in use:
- Store in a dry place: Moisture can cause damage to your skateboard, especially the deck and bearings. Store your skateboard in a dry place, away from humidity or moisture, when not in use. Avoid leaving it outside or in a damp environment.
- Use a skateboard bag: If you need to transport or store it for an extended period, consider using a skateboard bag. A skateboard bag protects against scratches, dust, and moisture. It also makes it easier to carry your skateboard around.
- Avoid extreme temperatures: Extreme temperatures, both hot and cold, can affect the performance and lifespan of your skateboard. Avoid leaving your skateboard in a car on a hot day or exposing it to freezing temperatures for extended periods. Extreme temperatures can warp the deck and damage other components.
- Regularly check for damage: Even with proper storage, it’s essential to check your skateboard for any signs of damage regularly. Inspect the deck, trucks, wheels, and bearings for cracks, bends, or other issues. By catching and addressing any damage early on, you can prevent further problems and maintain the longevity of your skateboard.
By following these tips, you’ll ensure that your skateboard stays in excellent condition, ready for your next skateboarding session.
Congratulations! You’ve successfully cleaned your skateboard and are now ready to hit the streets or skatepark with a board that’s in top shape. But the cleaning process is not the end of maintaining your skateboard. Remember, the key to a long-lasting and high-performing skateboard is regular upkeep.
After each ride, take a moment to wipe down your board and remove any debris that might have accumulated. Keep an eye on your hardware and components, tightening or replacing them as needed. By incorporating these simple maintenance practices into your skateboarding routine, you’ll not only extend the life of your beloved board but also ensure a safe and enjoyable riding experience.
So, as you embark on your next skate session, take a moment to appreciate the effort you’ve put into maintaining your skateboard. With a clean and well-maintained board beneath your feet, you’re ensuring top-notch performance and respecting the tool that enables you to push your limits and explore new horizons.