After some time of Skateboarding, your skateboard speed starts resting, right?
The reason is Wheels and bearings get packed with dirt and debris, which creates plenty of problems while riding.
Wheels and bearings are essential equipment to examine in a skateboard, it decides your riding experience. To take care of your tools, especially wheels, is a sign of a pro rider.
Luckily, you have two options: replace wheels and bearing with a new one, or service the existing one.
In this article, you will master how to clean skateboard wheels and bearings. After completing the reading, you can perform it at home with ease.
How To Clean Skateboard Wheels And Bearings
Most people don’t know that you can get your old riding experience back by servicing wheels and bearings. For which you don’t require any skills or special tools.
If you follow the given steps, you can easily fix your rusty skateboard bearings and wheels.
Note: keep all the bolts and nuts of wheels and bearings together to avoid losing.
How To Clean Skateboard Wheels
Things you need to clean skateboard wheels:
- Socket Wrench
- Dishwashing Soap
- Soft brush or old toothbrush
- Paper towels
Before you start cleaning your skateboard wheels, rub the complete skateboard with water, and dry it.
1. Remove the Wheels from Board
Many people search for how to clean skateboard wheels without removing them. If you want your wheels to clean effectively, then you have to remove them from the board.
Now place your deck on the ground so that the wheels are facing up. It makes it easier to work further.
Use ½ inch or 13mm socket to twist and remove axle nuts from wheels. Please keep all the ousted stuff (like nuts and washers) together to reinstall it after cleaning.
2. Remove the Bearings from Wheels
After removing wheels from the board, pry out the wheel’s bearings, using a small tool like a screwdriver.
Hold the wheel sides out on your front, then insert the screwdriver tip in front of the wheel, and pull the screwdriver side to release the bearing.
Once it removed from the wheels, a bearing spacer will fall out from the wheels’ center. After removing one, apply the same trick on all other bearings.
Use a separate container for bearings, don’t mix both wheels and bearings in the same.
3. Remove Embedded Stuff
After separating all the wheels and bearings, clean the embedded stuff like rocks or gravel using a rag, scrubbing the surface of your wheels, or use your fingers to exclude the material.
4. Dip the Wheels In Soapy Water
Take a large container and make a mix-up of water and dishwashing soap. For that, take about ½ gallon water and two spoons of dishwashing soap.
Keep the mixture at rest until the water starts getting suds. Then add all your wheels (Not bearings) to that mixture and soak it for 10 to 15 minutes.
It helps you in cleaning all the small debris efficiently, which is hard to clean before.
5. Scrub the Wheels
After removing the wheels from soapy water, gently scrub and remove all the debris from the inner and outer parts using a soft rag or toothbrush.
After cleaning the skateboard wheels completely, use paper towels to dry the wheels.
Finally, your wheels are ready to race like earlier. Now let’s clean the bearings then we will see how to reinstall the wheels and bearing.
Before moving further, you can also check out how to make skateboard wheels spin longer if your wheels are not spinning for a longer time.
How To Clean Skateboard Bearings
Below are the step by step method to clean skateboard bearings:
1. Remove Bearing Shield
After finishing the cleaning of the skateboard wheels, you have to clean the bearings. While removing skateboard bearings, be soft. If it damages, you won’t be able to attach it again.
Use a razor blade, chock it between the bearing and its shield, then to pry the bearing shield from bearings, force the blade down.
2. Soak the Bearings
If you want to be on the safe side while cleaning the bearings, I would recommend using Citrus cleaner. I have seen some people use a harsh cleaner which damages your bearings and you can’t reattach it.
To clean the bearings with Citrus cleaner, you have two options, spray the bearings individually and clean them. The secondary option is to take a small container and soak it or use a bearing cleaning kit, which makes your work more manageable.
3. Bearing Lubricate
After drying the bearings correctly, lubricate them. For this, you can use a thinner lubricant like skateboarding oils or sewing machine oil. Release 2 to 3 drops of oil on each bearing.
Then spin all the bearings and ensure all the balls become coated. After that, use a paper towel and clean the waste lubricant from the outside of the bearings.
4. Reinstall the Bearing In Wheels
Finally, the time is to reinstall the bearing in wheels, which is very easy compared to removing it.
First, snap the shield back to its position using your thumbs. It helps in protecting bearings and keeps them lubricated.
Now reinsert the bearings into the wheel by pushing it, and do the same with all the bearings.
5. Reattach the Wheels In Skateboard
Using the socket wrench, attach the wheels with skateboard trucks, and tight the bolts and nuts. And repeat the same process with other wheels.
Now you have learned the entire process of how to clean skateboard wheels and bearings to service it yourself easily.
When should I replace my skateboard wheels?
The harsh truth is every time cleaning your wheels won’t work because every wheel has a limited life.
On average, skateboard wheels last up to 3 months, but it depends on your riding style. If you’re a rough road rider, you need the best skateboard wheels for rough roads to keep them last longer. Simultaneously, many people like to do tricks like powerslides on a skateboard; for those also we have a list of the best skateboard wheels for powerslides.
If you see your skateboard wheel has a crack or the surface material is moving and feels wobble while riding the board means the time has come to replace skateboard wheels.
Bearings also need replacement at least thrice a year, depends on your riding style. If you found the bearing is missing balls or crack on it, it means the bearings also need a replacement.
Benefits Of Regularly Cleaning Skateboard Wheels And Bearings
- Cleaning your skateboard bearings and wheels has several benefits:
- It will help to extend the life of your bearings and wheels.
- It will keep your skateboard running smoothly.
- It will prevent rusting and damage to your skateboard wheels and bearings.
- It will make your skateboard look new and clean.
- Cleaning wheels and bearings regularly increase their lifespan.
You may think cleaning bearings and wheels is a big job, but the truth is you only need to clean bearings, and wheels need only to be dipped in soapy water.
Is it possible that you are confused about how to clean longboard wheels and bearings? Are you also thinking there’s another method or the same as skateboard wheels? In summary, longboard wheels are different from skateboard wheels, but bearings are the same, so that the process will be the same as skateboard wheels and bearings.
A variety of bearings are available on the market. Some shields are metal or rubber, while others have no shield at all. Rubber or no shield bearings are the best if you want to clean the bearings and get them back to their original speed and performance. On the other hand, the metal bearings are hard to clean and back up as previously.
Yes, cleaning skateboard wheels have many benefits, like old wheels can give better performance again, increase speed, terrible noise reduction, and much more. Not only wheels but bearings also play a significant role, so keep cleaning both the wheels and bearings.
No, always use citrus cleaner to clean skateboard bearings because any harsh cleaner like vinegar can damage your bearings, and you can’t reattach it with wheels.
Putting WD40 on skateboard bearings is not recommended as it is made for removing dust and will shorten your bearings’ life. If you must use a lubricant, try using something like sewing machine oil.
It depends on the type of wheels. Polyurethane (PU) wheels are not affected by water much, but many other types of skateboard wheels will absorb water and swell up, which will ruin them. You should dry off your skateboard wheels every time they get wet to prevent rusting.
You can soak your skateboard wheels in soapy water to clean them, but it’s important to make sure they are completely dry before using them again. Wet wheels can cause your skateboard to slip and can also lead to rusting.
You should clean your skateboard wheels and bearings every few months or as needed. If you skate in dirty or wet conditions, you may need to clean them more often, like twice a month.
Yup, that’s all, guys!
Now you’re ready to fix rusty skateboard bearings and wheels. I hope your query on how to clean skateboard wheels and bearings is solved in this article.
If you have any more queries, let’s connect in the comment box below.
I am James Buckridge, the founder of skateboardidea.com. Skateboarding is my passion, and I have years of teaching experience in this field. Our vision and mission is to provide you with accurate information on everything related to skateboarding. Catch me on Twitter & Pinterest.