If you’re a regular skateboarder, you know how great it feels when your board responds to your movements. A dirty skateboard will influence the overall appearance and your skateboarding experience. Besides, a skateboard of dirt and mud in your board’s bearings can keep the wheels from spinning, for example, and grimy grip tape can cause you to slip and lose your balance while you’re riding. Therefore, knowing how to clean skateboard grip tape, trucks, wheels, and bearings isn’t just a good-looking matter – it’s important for your safety too. Read on to find out how to clean and maintain your skateboard properly!
How to clean grip tape?
A skateboard with dirty grip tape is difficult to ride and not very pretty to look at. Layers of dirt and mud can lessen traction and resistance, making it hard to land any tricks. Learning how to clean your own grip tape can save you money and your board will stay in good shape for longer.
What you need: soft wire brush, soapy water, microfiber cloth, grip gum
- Prepare a soft wire brush and a bowl of soapy water with a little lemon.
- Dip your brush in thebowl and scrub your grip tape. Do not submerge the whole skateboard. Pushing too hard will tear the grip and strip grit from the tape.
- Dry the grip and board with a microfiber cloth. Do not ride the board until it dries completely.
- Use grip gum if there is still residual grime andbrush away the residue left behind.
- If it’sto dirty to clean or you think it’s too much trouble to clean the grip tape, you may also replace it with a new one.
How to clean skateboard trucks?
The trucks on your skateboard are it's only piece of connective material, and keeping them clean and lubricated is absolutely crucial to having good rides.
What you need: skate tool; emery cloth; wire brush; alcohol; dry cloth;
1.Use a skate tool to remove 4 axel nuts and 2 kingpin nuts from the trucks. Check the condition of these nuts to decide if they should be replaced.
2.Pull off the top bushing and washer from each truck and remove the hangers. Then lift the bottom bushing and washer to let the kingpin drop out.
3.Use a emery cloth to coarsely sand the old paint and oxidization off. Then use a wire brush to scrub the hangers.
- Wipe these parts with a dry cloth to get rid of the majority of the dust and rubbing alcohol to strip any grease from the surface.
- If you want to change the color of your base plate, kingpins o washers, you can choose to spray paint these parts. Remember not to paint the axels of the trucks.
6.Reassemble your trucks. And now you can use your renovated trucks and get them looking and riding as good as new.
How to clean skateboard wheels?
It’s so tough to watch a perfect new wheel get all kinds of nasty. It’s nice to give them a deep clean sometimes and make them look new again.
What you need: socket wrench; tooth brush/rag; bucket; soapy water; paper towel
1.Use a socket wrench to unscrew the axle nuts and remove the wheels from the board. (Make sure you keep all the nuts, bolts or washers together so that you can find them all when you are done.)
2.Pry the bearings from the wheels which will be cleaned separately.
3.Use a rag or a toothbrush to scrub any obvious mud and grime from the wheels and place them into a bucket of hot soapy water to soak for at least ten minutes.
4.Give the wheels another gentle scrub with your rag or toothbrush, and then dry them carefully with paper towels.
How to clean skateboard bearings?
Crud and dirt collects easily within skateboard wheel bearings and can really slow you down. If your bearings are making noise or your wheels don’t spin freely, you’ll really know the benefits of keeping your bearings clean!
What you need: skate tool; solvent (Acetone or Isopropyl Alcohol);skateboard bearing lubricant; bearing cleaning bottle; sewing needle or similar object; paper towel or rag
1.Unscrew the axle nuts with skate tool and remove the wheels from the axle, paying attention to the axle washers between the nut and bearing. Then you need to take a little muscle to pry the bearings out of the wheels.
2.Remove the bearing shield with a needle and be careful not to bend the shields, especially if you have rubber/nylon shield bearings.
3.Place the shields in a small bowl of hot water and dish soap. Don not use hard solvent, because the solvent will dry out and destroy rubber/nylon shield. Rub the dirt off with your fingers and immediately dry them.
4.Drop the bearings into the solvent-filled bottle and shake them up to flush the dirt out. Then take the bearings out of the solvent and let them dry on a paper towel or rag.
5.Apply skateboard bearing lubricant to the bearings and also two to three drops onto the steel balls inside the bearings. Do not soak the bearings in lubricant as the lube will go all over your wheels and attract dirt and grime to the bearing while skating.
6.Carefully press the bearing shields back into place on the bearing.
To briefly sum it up, the component that needs cleaning most is the bearings. Riding bearings that are super dirty and un-lubricated will increase friction and cause excess heat, creating more wear and tear on the bearing balls. Eventually your bearings can even stop spinning and lock up. Even if they don’t seem dirty, cleaning your bearings regularly will keep them in good shape and so you can avoid spending extra money to replace them completely. To extend the service life of your skateboard as long as possible, regular cleaning for all these parts is essential.