How much do you love your skateboard? Too much, right?
Then you clean it more often. How do you find skateboard bearing cleaning to be? The process of cleaning skateboard bearing may look tough, but it is not. Nevertheless, cleaning bearings is essential for your skateboard.
Now the question is ” How To Clean A Skateboard Bearing ?”
Before finding that out let’s first look at why it is essential.
Skateboard bearings might be small, but they enable the rotations of your wheels. The spin and smoothness of these rotations determine the speed of your skateboard. It is important always to clean them.
Cleaning your skateboard bearing maintains their smoothness. It is this smoothness that guarantees how fast you can skate.
Keeping your skateboard bearings clean improves their lifespan. When you skate, bearings naturally collect dirt inside them. Removing the grime helps them to last longer. It saves you money since you won’t always have to buy new bearings. It can also save you from buying the whole set of wheels.
Cleaning your skateboard bearings can save you from nasty falls. Too much dirt that accumulates inside them damages their evenness. The roughness can cause some damages to your wheels, resulting in you falling.
Now that you know why you should clean skateboard bearing, here is the bearing cleaning solution.
What Do You Need to Clean the Skateboard Bearings?
- Socket wrench/ratchet/skate tool
- Clean bowl
- Clean bucket
- Small plate
- Non-water-based solvent (Acetone or carburetor cleaner)
- Skateboard bearing lubricant
- Generic dish soap
- Two dry rags
- Sewing needle
Step by Step Process of Cleaning the Bearings
1. Remove the Wheels
Use the socket wrench or ratchet or skate tool to unscrew the wheel nuts. Steadily hold the wheels in place. Remove the wheel from the axle when you have finished unscrewing the nuts. Mind the axle washers that may be between the nut and the bearing. Put the washers on a small plate so that they don’t get lost.
2. Remove the Bearings and Shields
The bearing is located at the center of the wheel and circular. Cautiously pull it out from the wheels with a screwdriver. Put them in a clean bucket. Remove the bearing shields with a sewing needle. These can either be metal shields or rubber/nylon shields.
Put them in a clean bowl of warm water and dish soap. Do not place the shields in acetone or any solvent. It dries out the shield rubber/nylon compound that is essential for keeping the dirt out.
3. Clean Off Dirt and Grime
Apply a modest amount of solvent to a clean, dry rag. Gently rub the bearings with the cloth to remove the visible dirt. Avoid grinding the dirt into the bearings.
4. Prepare the Cleaning Solution
Fill the clean bucket with a non-water-based solvent (Acetone or carburetor cleaner). Note that if you are using acetone, you should wear gloves. Fill enough solvent to cover all bearings.
Some best skate bearing cleaning solutions:
They are the market winner products suitable to apply instantly on your bearing.
5. Immerse the Bearing in the Solution
Put the bearings in the cleaning solution. Whirl them around in the solution for about five minutes. Let them soak for ten minutes. When the grease has darkened, carefully drain the solvent and add some more to the bucket. Repeat this step many times until the bearings appear clean. Remove them when you are sure they are clean enough.
6. Remove and Dry the Bearings
Put the wet bearings on a clean rag. Allow them to dry naturally. Give them sufficient time to dry out completely. You may fan them to accelerate their drying.
7. Lubricate the Bearings
Use the skateboard bearing lubricant to oil the bearings. Don’t use cooking or motor oil, and any oil that may cause stickiness. Put 3 drops of lubricant in each bearing. Avoid putting too much lubricant as this will create a huge mess, which you will need to clean up again. Make sure you spin the bearing to distribute the lubricant all over the bearing.
8. Put Back the Bearing Shields
This is easy. Place back each shield, ensuring that there is no space seal between each shield and bearing.
9. Put Back the Bearings
Simply use your finger to put back each bearing in each respective wheel firmly. Push the wheel down onto the skateboard truck to shove the bearings further. Remember to put back the bearing spacer if your skateboard came with it.
10. Refasten the Wheels
Put the wheels back onto the skateboard trucks. Make sure to put a washer on each side of each wheel. Use the socket wrench or ratchet or skate tool to tighten the wheel nuts until the wheels are firm, not rigid. Test each wheel by spinning using your hand. Loosen the nut a little bit if the wheel doesn’t spin or hard to turn.
Let’s say you might skate for exercise or fun. If you are not a professional skater or a mechanic, the equipment above might be out of your reach. Not to worry, here is a bearing cleaning solution using household items.
How to clean skateboard bearing with household items?
- Use a socket wrench to remove the wheels without removing the bearings.
- Put the two together on a clean, dry rag.
- Spray the Acetone lubricant a few times on the bearings. Ensure that the spray hits the bearings and clean off the dirt.
- Pat the wheels with a clean towel.
- Cover the wheels with another cloth to dry.
- Screw back the wheels on your skateboard. Make sure to put a washer on each side of each wheel.
- Spin the wheels with your hand to test them. If the wheels don’t spin or are hard to spin, loosen the bolts a little bit.
To Sum Up
Finally, you have finished the process of skateboard bearing cleaning, and you are good to go. Once you have finished skateboard bearing cleaning, take your skateboard for a spin. Don’t get demotivated when your skateboard isn’t fast on your first try. You would need about 10 minutes for the lubricant to spread all over inside the bearings.