Your skateboard’s performance could be drastically, drastically affected if you don’t know how to clean a skateboard. And isn’t it only natural with all the things that the board of wood has to go through?
With yourself sliding and riding it across streets or any random surface at your own will, it will be surprising if it doesn’t. But since we, your lovely helpers, are here to take charge (or back you up at least), you don’t need to worry about piling filth as we have some home remedies and DIYs up our sleeves to that thing clean and sparkly all over again.
Maybe not sparkly, but you get us.
How to Clean a Skateboard?
In order to roll smooth as silk and ride fast as horses, you’ll need to understand the basics of how to clean your skateboard. But here’s the thing: you don’t be scrubbing them every wretched time you see dirt on the deck.
About the deck, it is honestly unnecessary and even offensive for some to be cleaned, since the scruffs and scratches are badges of honor.
Back to what we were saying, yes, you don’t need frequent cleaning. Only when you feel that you are going slower than your fellow skateboarders, and it isn’t your fault, you know where to check.
We’ll say start with the bearings first. Because dirt accumulated here reduces the level and intensity of your performance. So if you want to get back the old glory of speed and pushing through the streets, we suggest you start right here:
How to Clean Skateboard Bearings?
Now, what to clean skateboard bearings with is highly dependent on the availability of one thing, that we previously mentioned: dirt. So you’ll need dirty bearings, some lubricant, paper towels, single-use cups, and some speed cream.
Pro tip: If you don’t like how garages smell or anyone in your house doesn’t like how garages smell, you can do the whole task outside your home. To understand the effectiveness of your cleansing, roll the bearings pre-cleansing and run it again post-cleansing. It should be rolling smoother now.
Anyway, some bearings may come with added, removable shields. When you are cleansing bearings, get rid of these. Placing a paper towel on areas where you will work, you can prevent probable accidents and injuries from slipping from the lube.
- Pour/spray the lube into a cup. Any cup other than styrofoam would do.
- Take your bearings on hand and pour them into the cup to let them sit in the pool of lube. Some say you can keep it for an hour; some say you can keep it for longer.
- Coming back, if you notice the lube getting dark and dirty from the dirt leaving the bearings, it’s time to change the situation and replace the lube in the cup with a fresh pour.
- Leave your eight bearings in the second arrangement as well. Keep repeating the process till you see clean lube left on the cup. A good suggestion is to use WD-40. This leaves a relatively thin film of residue once done and can cleanse better whatever remains from before. But you could go your own way too.
- Now, use the paper towel to clean your bearings. Don’t jumble them up, clean them one after the other for a proper result.
- Roll the bearings and shake off what’s excess.
- Next, use any speed cream with Teflon to lube them the last time, and they’ll be ready for next use.
How to Clean Skateboard deck?
As you know already, skateboard decks are made of wood. So the one cleaning method you will not follow is washing the deck with water. Otherwise, it will deform in shape, and the whole thing will be troublesome to ride and do tricks with.
Be it downturned performance levels or softer wood that we don’t want, and there are better ways to clean decks. There are furniture oils and spirit/linseed oil mixes that can get the stain out of the wood at the bottom.
But on the surface, this requires you to clean the grip tape along, so we would like to discuss the whole thing there.
But you could clean it with water/vinegar mix if you can do it fast, but you will have to let it dry under scorching heat to let it dry completely.
How to Clean Skateboard wheels?
No matter how clean the streets or ramps are, your wheels are bound to get dirty with time. And there’s undoubtedly one dirt that you can’t fix so correctly, and that is the yellowing of wheels. In that case, you’ll need changing. But otherwise, you can tackle the dirt with us.
Here a two ways you can adopt to clean the wheels. Firstly, by removing them, Secondly, by not.
You can not remove it and clean with a wet rag the parts of the wheels that come in contact with the ground to improve the rolling if there isn’t much dirt. Spin the wheels and keep cleaning first with the wet and then with a dry rug. This can fasten the drying process as the water from the damp cloth can damage the bearings.
Now let’s come to the point of removing them and cleaning them.:
- Using a wrench, you have to unscrew the wheels.
- You’ll also have to remove the bearings to clean them. Use a screwdriver to pry these out and keep them separate for separate cleaning.
- Next, you will need a wire brush or toothbrush and some dish soap to scrub off the dirt. Get brushes with thinner bristles that can get inside curves and edges and squeaky clean it.
- After that, soak them in warm water for 15-20 minutes or so and scrub them a final time. (Try not to use WD-40 here as you did in the bearings. But according to some, post-cleansing, you can apply lotion to let the boy roll better.)
- We suggest you let them dry naturally or use paper towels.
How to Clean Skateboard grip tape?
You could be one of those guys, to whom the best way to clean skateboard grip tape is to remove it, un-grip it or peel it off for some fresh, new grip tape.
While you may have some rightfully earned bucks spent in this process, we love to be on a budget and do some DIYs, and hence we’d rather clean it than go all over for this new fuss of replacing grip tapes.
Anyway, the first method in which you can do it requires a microfiber cloth, soft brushes, and rubber. Don’t get confused about the last bit.
There is a thing called grip gum, sold by shopkeepers, that allows you to take the grime off the surface. A similar product if you don’t find this is the rubber cement remover.
- You have to put much pressure to slide it over the deck and have it cleaned.
- Once you are out with the surface-level grime, you can use your brush too deep clean and delve into the process. That’s what some articles will tell you. But that’s honestly pointless and has ruinous results.
- If you use a soft dry brush, there is no issue. You can dust off the excess with a cloth.
But if you are using a wet one and cleaning with water too, be prepared to have the perforated grip tape of your shortboard malfunction and lead to the damage of the whole thing with time.
If you ask us, soft brushes can’t precisely clean the grip tape as much, being what they are: soft brushes.
The second method is meant for longboards, and this one is rougher.
- Now, a piece of quick information: longboards do not usually have perforated grip tapes, so you may use the window cleaner/soft brush technique to scrub off the excess dirt first.
- You can use small, repetitive strokes to clean the grip tape thoroughly till you reach one end from the other.
- After that, use the microfiber cloth to dry it off completely
- Then use the grip gum method to clean it totally. This won’t work on the damp grip tape. So make sure your grip tape is dry as a desert.
How to Clean Skateboard trucks?
Skateboard trunks have the issue of rusting of all things. For that:
- Get yourself some white vinegar and paper towels.
- After detaching the truck from the deck and the wheels, you can see where the rust has formed. This rust sometimes causes truck breakage, and since we don’t want, what you have to do is wipe vinegar on it, depending on the amount of rust or soak it in vinegar till the rust goes off.
- After a few hours, scrub it off, cleanse it with paper towels and leave them.
- Before reassembly, spray lube on them to prevent future resting.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which household items help in cleaning skateboard bearings?
See the section on what to use to clean skateboard bearings: it’s lube, paper towels, and cups.
Is it bad if you get your skateboard wet?
Yes. It can deform.
Is grip tape ruined by water?
For shortboards, yes.
We hope you learned how to clean skateboards from our article. Use all this information for your next cleaning spree and don’t do DIYs unless you are sure they won’t harm your little treasure.
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