- 1 How to clean a skateboard-Follow these steps to clean your deck and wheels
- 1.1 How to clean a skateboard deck?
- 1.2 How to clean skateboard wheels?
- 1.3 What to avoid?
- 1.4 How to prevent dirty grip tape?
How to clean a skateboard-Follow these steps to clean your deck and wheels
As you enjoy skateboarding, you want to keep your board clean. However, sometimes you catch gum, grease, gunk, and dirt on your way. Also, skateboards are highly sensitive to water and they are exposed to the grime of the streets every time you use them. So it’s important to clean your deck and wheels once in a while. Read on to learn how to clean a skateboard properly.
How to clean a skateboard deck?
Cleaning your skateboard deck is easy and simple with a soft wire brush. All you need to do is to buy soft wire brush and grip gum, then they will help you to maintain the cleanliness of your board.
Step 1: Buying a good soft wire brush
You can find soft wire brushes from your local stores. Get one that has sturdy bristles but not too sharp because they might tear the grip tape. Besides, you want them to be small so that they can provide precision during the cleaning. Big ones will ruin the grip tape of your skateboard deck.
Step 2: Brushing the grip tape of the deck
Once you get the soft wire brush, now it’s time to know how to clean a skateboard deck properly. You can start brushing your grip tape at the end of the deck through the other side. And you should go on a section by section to bring out the deeper dirt on the surface. You can use your hands to sweep it. Make sure not to push hard the soft wire brush in your deck or strip the grit of your board.
Step 3: Removing the excess dirt with grip gum
Use some grip gum that you can buy from local skate shops to remove any excess dirt from your deck after you brush it with a soft wire brush. Similar to using a pencil eraser, you rub it on the grip tape then brush it away. If you do it precisely and perfectly, your board will look like a brand-new one.
How to clean skateboard wheels?
Compared to cleaning a skateboard deck, the wheels require more work to clean. Follow these steps to clean your skateboard wheels properly.
Step 1: Remove the wheels and bearings
First, you need to make sure that you have a skate tool or a socket wrench to take off the wheels from your skateboard. You do this by taking off each bolt on your truck’s axle. When your bolt is already off, you need to position the truck’s axle inside the mouth of the bearing at a 45 degree angle.
By doing that, you are creating a crowbar like effect to pry the bearings out. Keep in mind that you need to put both two bearings for each wheel in a secure space. So your wheels are ready to be cleaned. In the meantime, you can also clean your bearings.
Step 2: Clean bearings (Optional)
If you decide to clean your bearings while they are taken out, put them into a cup of isopropyl alcohol. Cleaning bearings often improve your riding experience and you will be able to enjoy a faster and smoother ride.
Step 3: Soak your wheels in soapy water
Prepare a bucket of soapy water or you could run them under a faucet. Then you can start soaking your wheels in a bucket with some dawn dishwashing soap. To make them clean, the soap needs to dissolve the gunk lying in the bearing beds so the bearings should be out of the wheels.
Although the wheel track that touches the ground is dirty, the most damaging dirt is inside the wheels. So you should use a cloth, rag or paper towel to clean them thoroughly. The key is to clean the inside, the wheel track and the sides of the wheel. Make sure to soak the wheels to the point where the gunk can go off the wheel track easily.
Step 4: Wire brush away the gunk
Find a wire brush in a local hardware store or any online stores. In case you are not able to find one, you could use an old toothbrush. This step requires your attention to detail. To loosen up the gunk, you can run your wheels under hot water and then use the brush to scrape off any embedded debris.
Because you kept your wheels soaking for a while in the previous step, now it’s easy for the gunk to come off. But you need to keep adding dawn dish soap to particular spots. At the end of this step, make sure that the soap is washed away. Now as your wheels are all clean, you can proceed to step 5.
Step 5: Drying your skateboard wheels
This is an important step of the cleaning process. If you leave your wheels wet, they will attract more dirt and grime. Besides, wet wheels make your ride less smooth. You also need to make sure that your wheels are completely dry before putting in your bearings as these bearings can be destroyed by water.
Not to mention, water can log your deck with sogginess. If you skip this step, you can actually ruin your skateboards as you are trying to clean the wheels. You can use a rag or paper towels to dry off your wheels separately and place them in the sun for a few hours.
Step 6: Reassemble your wheels and board
As every part of your skateboard is now clean, you can start reassembling your board by rotating your wheels. You can skip this part if your wheels are old and weathered to avoid a crooked alignment.
Otherwise, you are advised to rotate your wheels to extend their life and smoothness. Firstly, put back in your clean bearings into their beds. Then assemble your board back together. And it’s all done, you can have some fun with friends and enjoy your freshly clean wheels!
What to avoid?
As you have learnt how to clean a skateboard, there are still some more restrictions you need to know. Firstly, do not use water or cleaners to clean your deck. Also, when using steel brushes, avoid applying too much pressure if you don’t want to ruin the grip. It’s best to gently apply a bit of pressure.
More importantly, try to avoid skating in areas with a lot of dirt as they are not good for your grip tape as well as your bearings.
In addition, when cleaning your skateboard, you should secure your workspace in the proper area to avoid making a mess. The ideal area is a flat surface with plenty of room to move things around. Try to keep the area clean and avoid the wooden deck of your board and your bearings from getting wet at all costs.
How to prevent dirty grip tape?
If you often skate near mud, sand or a dusty environment, you will get dirty grip tape. So the best way to prevent your grip tape from getting dirty is to avoid these areas as much as possible and don’t skate outside just after it rained.
In case you step in a muddy space, don’t step on your board. As we already mentioned, water is the worst enemy of your deck. So if you still want to skate in these areas, you could consider getting a rain deck. The best place for your skateboard is in indoor parks or any places that have some cover.
As you can see, it’s not too difficult to clean your skateboard when it looks dirty. Hopefully with this article, you already know how to clean a skateboard properly to be able to use it for a long time.