How to Clean Longboard Bearings?

Longboarding is not just a hobby; it’s a lifestyle for many enthusiasts. To ensure your ride stays smooth and your longboard performs at its best, proper maintenance is key. One crucial aspect of maintenance is cleaning the bearings.

Dirty bearings can significantly affect your ride’s performance, causing friction and hindering speed. Let’s delve into the art of cleaning longboard bearings for an optimized experience.

How to Clean Longboard Bearings?


How to Clean Longboard Bearings?

Understanding Longboard Bearings

Before diving into the cleaning process, understanding the anatomy of longboard bearings is essential. Bearings consist of small metal balls within a metal ring, enclosed in a shield or casing. Over time, dust, dirt, and debris can accumulate within the bearings, hampering their performance.

Importance of Cleaning Bearings

Clean bearings ensure a smooth and efficient ride by reducing friction and maintaining optimal performance. Regular cleaning prolongs the lifespan of your bearings and enhances the overall longboarding experience.

Methods for Cleaning Bearings
MethodMaterials NeededEffectiveness Rating (Out of 5)
Solvent MethodCleaning solvent, container, paper towels4.5
Citrus CleanerCitrus-based cleaner, container, gloves4.0
Isopropyl AlcoholIsopropyl alcohol, container, cloth3.8
DIY Bearing CleanerVinegar, baking soda, container3.5
Solvent Method

Using a cleaning solvent specifically designed for bearings is highly effective. Submerge the bearings in the solvent, agitate gently, then dry thoroughly.

Citrus Cleaner

Citrus-based cleaners are eco-friendly alternatives. Soaking the bearings in the cleaner breaks down grime, followed by a thorough rinse and drying.

Isopropyl Alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol is a readily available option. Soak the bearings, swish them around gently, and ensure complete drying before reassembly.

DIY Bearing Cleaner

A mixture of vinegar and baking soda can serve as a homemade cleaner. Soak the bearings, rinse thoroughly, and dry completely.

In competitive longboarding circuits, maintaining equipment at optimal performance is a constant focus. Athletes and professionals routinely clean and maintain their bearings to ensure top-tier performance during races and exhibitions.

Expert Insights

Experts in the longboarding community stress the importance of regular maintenance. Cleaning bearings after every few rides or when noticeable dirt accumulation occurs is a recommended practice.

In my years of exploring the longboarding scene, I’ve encountered various challenges related to bearing maintenance. Utilizing a solvent-based cleaning method has consistently delivered excellent results for me, ensuring a smoother ride every time.

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What can I use to clean my longboard wheels?

To clean longboard wheels, you can use dish soap and a coarse sponge or wire brush. Scrub the wheels thoroughly and then dry them with an absorbent towel or set them out in the sun to dry.

If the wheels are extra dirty or covered in an oily substance, they may need to soak longer to loosen the dirt or gunk. You can also swap out your soap mixture for a fresh bowl if your wheels are super dirty. 

What household items can you use to clean skateboard bearings?

To clean skateboard bearings using household items, you will need the following materials:

  1. Skate tool or wrench: To remove the wheels from your skateboard.
  2. Tray or container: To store small hardware like nuts and washers while working on the bearings.
  3. Razorblade or safety pin: To remove the shields from the bearings.
  4. Acetone, isopropyl alcohol, or mineral spirits: To clean the bearings.
  5. Toothbrush or small brush: To scrub the bearings.
  6. Clean, dry cloth: To dry the bearings.
  7. Bearing lubricant (optional): To re-lubricate the bearings after cleaning.

Follow these steps to clean your skateboard bearings:

  1. Remove the wheels from your skateboard using the skate tool or wrench.
  2. Place the bearings in a small bowl or container and add enough acetone, isopropyl alcohol, or mineral spirits to cover them.
  3. Let the bearings soak for a few minutes to loosen any dirt or grime.
  4. Use a toothbrush or small brush to scrub the bearings, removing any remaining dirt or grime.
  5. Thoroughly dry the bearings with a paper towel or hair dryer.
  6. Re-lubricate the bearings with petroleum jelly, motor oil, or a skate brand lubricant.

Remember to reassemble the skateboard wheels and bearings once they are clean and lubricated. Regular maintenance will help prolong the life of your skateboard and keep the bearings in optimal condition.

What is the best cleaning solution for bearings?

Is it worth cleaning skateboard bearings?


The art of cleaning longboard bearings is a crucial skill for any enthusiast. Regular maintenance enhances performance, extends the lifespan of your bearings, and provides a smoother, more enjoyable ride. Experiment with different cleaning methods to find the one that suits you best and keep rolling!

For further insights into longboard maintenance, refer to Longboard Bearing Maintenance Guide.

I was born and raised in the U.S. I started skating at the age of 10 when I got my first skateboard. I started doing longboarding a few years ago and I loved it so much that I started my own website.

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