Either you are an amateur or a pro, skateboarding can bring a lot of fun. However, at some points, your skateboard will wear down every time you go out for skating, and it’s unavoidable. Skateboards come in a wide range of prices, but electric skateboards are much more expensive than common skateboards. To extend the lifespan of your skateboard and its hardware, regular and proper maintenance is required. Furthermore, skateboard maintenance does not require complex equipment or techniques. Every skater can conduct these tasks with some easy-to-find tools and a comprehensible guide. Here are a few tips to keep your skateboard in good condition:
For the grip tape of your skateboard, it’s necessary to clean it and check its condition. All the dirt and dust will influence your riding experience, and the attrition provides less friction to hold your feet. When cleaning your grip tape, use a soft wire brush, soapy water and grip gum. All these tools will get you back a clean and good-looking skateboard. For the peeled grip tape, some people just choose to peel off the whole grip tape and replace it with a new one. It’s a good chance for you to change a different style of grip tape and make your skateboard have a whole new outlook. Just be careful when you apply the grip tape into your skateboard deck to avoid air bubbles. But for others who might be on a budget or want to save money, the peeled grip tape can be reused. They may peel the grip tape off and re-grip it with some super glue. It’s the easiest and quickest way to solve the problem. But do remember don’t use the hair dryer to warm the glue, which will dry out the wood deck.
It’s quite normal that your skateboard deck will develop a crack or two over time. Often you don’t even notice that your deck isn’t responding as well as before. The worst case is that one day your deck will just break in half. Another common deck problem is razor tail. Razor tails can leave nasty cuts and often cause injuries. And sometimes these sharp tails may hurt bystanders. If your tail wears down and gets sharp, you need to do something before it cracks or chips. You can shave it off a little the get rid of the sharp edges. If there are cracks you can seal those by applying glue or sealer and put some clamps on it. This will help for a while but eventually, you’ll need to replace your deck. You may wonder how often you should replace your skateboard deck. It depends on the frequency and type of skater. Just keep an eye on the deck. Sharp tails, chipped noses, and pressure cracks are signs you should replace your deck.
To keep your skateboard in a good performance, you’ll need to do regular maintenance to your trucks. We all know that the tightness of the trucks controls how easy or hard it is for the skateboard to turn. Sometimes you just want to adjust your trucks depending on how loose or how tight you prefer to skate. Keep in mind that a multi-purpose skateboard tool is always helpful for you to maintain trucks. When speaking of truck maintenance, it mainly involves tightening your kingpin, replacing a broken kingpin or bushings. It’s recommended loosening the nut on each truck a half or quarter turn counterclockwise at a time, then giving the board a try. Don't over loosen to the point that you risk having the nut fall off the kingpin. Don’t over tighten it either. Too tight will damage your bushings which will make your board will dead and unresponsive. A full turn should give a noticeable change. Some skaters develop a preference for a tighter truck on the front or the back, but it would be better to keep the two trucks consistent with each other until the skater develops.
After skateboarding for some time, your skateboard wheels could be blocked by dirt and cannot spin properly, thereby affecting the movement of your skateboard. Also, flat spots on wheels is a headache for skateboarders, as it vibrates and makes a nasty buzzing noise wheel you roll on it. It’s time to replace your skateboard wheels when they are irregular shaped, show signs of flat spots and your ride is a bit bumpy. Irregularly shaped wheels are very inconvenient and can make the difference in landing a trick or not. The wheels’ diameter slowly decreases over time due to friction and they’ll lose rebound. Replace the wheels when the profile is not thick enough. You can swap your wheels around about every 2 or 3 months, depending on how often you ride your skateboard. Rotating or swapping your wheels will increase prolong lifespan and your wheels will wear out more evenly.
Bearings and Bolts
Investing in good quality bearings is key to a good skateboard, but it’s of the same significance to maintain them regularly. We all know that every riding will impose a certain effect on the bearings and bolts. The bolts may loosen or ride on the wet streets might rust out the bearings. To maintain the bearings, you need to remove the bearings from the skateboard wheels first. A bearing puller is always useful to pull out bearings. Make sure you won’t damage the bearing shield in the process. Wipe dirt off each skateboard bearing and spray them with bearing lubricant. Remember not to choose the bearing lubricant that will coagulate and clog your bearings. If you feel your bearings making noise, or slowing your skateboard wheels, it's definitely time to buy new bearings.
Each truck is intended to be securely attached to the skateboard deck by bolts and nuts. You need to keep an eye on these bolts and nuts and they should be checked before every ride. The nuts have a nylon locking feature, but theoretically, they could loosen over time due to constant vibration. If they do, just tighten them back up. No need to over tighten, you'd want to avoid over embedding the bolt deeply into the board. Besides, the axle nuts should be tightened as far as they can be without impeding the spin of the wheel.
The most important maintenance tip is to not overcharge your batteries. Overcharging them can damage the cells and reduce their life cycle. You’ll find yourself looking for electric skateboard replacement batteries sooner than you need to. It’s important to use the right battery chargers. Using a charger with a higher or much lower voltage rating is a bad idea. It will damage your cells and can cause over or undercharging. Significantly reducing the working cycle or even causing them to stop altogether.
Only use the charger the manufacturer has supplied or one that meets the right specifications. Make sure you connect the charger first to the electric skateboard and then plug it into the wall socket. Unplug the charger when the battery is fully charged. It is important to charge the battery at least once every two months and maintain at least 80% battery level if you don't use the electric skateboard for a while.
In addition to maintenance of the specific components, there are also some tips for you to keep your electric skateboard in a good performance and prolong its service life:
- Store it in a dry place
- Avoid skateboarding when it’s wet or rains
- Maintain your bearings
- Sand down chips and splinters
- Clip grip tape that peels off
- Replace parts when needed
- Don’t throw it around
- Avoid extremely high temperatures or extreme cold
It indeed will take you some time to disassemble, clean and re-assemble your skateboard. Nevertheless, without regular maintenance, it will cost you more money to purchase new board components or even a brand new electric skateboard. With well-performed and regular maintenance, your skateboard will not only last longer but also deliver the best performance you can expect. An electric skateboard with regular maintenance will not only give you a pleasant skating experience but also protect you from possible accidents or injuries. Actually, the maintenance process isn’t that complex to you, right? Grab your tools and start now!
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