Life on roller skates is pretty sweet, cruising along with the wind in your hair and not a care in the world. But just like life itself, occasionally you may hit a bump, feel a tug to the side, or even grind to a stop. Don’t worry, you can always get back on track. Check out these roller skate maintenance tips to learn when (and how) to give your skates the TLC they need.
Roller Skate Problems to Watch Out For
Some of the most common problems you may notice with your skates include:
- Wheels not spinning freely
- One skate “pulling” to the left or right instead of rolling straight
- Wobbling all over the place, or on the other end of the spectrum, you feel like you can barely turn
So, how can you fix these issues?
- Clean your skate bearings. Over time they pick up dirt and debris, even if you’re skating at an indoor skating rink. If you try to spin your wheels and they don’t spin freely, this is the likely culprit. Cleaning your skate bearings is easy, and you should do it every 2-3 months to keep them in good shape.
- Examine your skate to determine why it’s pulling to one direction. It could be due to a bent axle, misaligned plate, or too much tension on one of the trucks. If you’re having trouble determining the cause, stop by our Odenton pro shop to chat with one of our helpful team members. We’re passionate about skating, and we love to help people progress in the sport, so don’t be afraid to ask questions!
- Check your trucks if you feel like your skates aren’t handling correctly; they may need to be tightened or loosened. The looser your trucks, the more easily they turn. The tighter you make them, the harder it will be to maneuver. You want to find a happy medium between responsiveness and stability.
A Roller Skate Maintenance Checklist
Ideally, you’ll stick to a roller skate maintenance schedule to head off any problems before they affect you on the rink. Use this checklist as a starting point, and adjust as needed for your frequency and intensity of skating.
- Every time you skate:
- Unlace and open up the tongue to let your skates dry out. DO NOT sit them in front of a fire, radiator, or attempt to dry them with a blowdryer, as this can warp the skate boot.
- Every week:
- Tighten stoppers
- Check wheel nuts
- Every 3-5 weeks:
- Give your boots, wheels, and plates a wipe down with a soft, damp cloth.
- Check your trucks and adjust as needed. They should be loose enough that you can move them with your full hand, but not so loose that you can move them with just your fingers.
Now that you know basic of roller skate maintenance, put those wheels to use! Join us for open skating sessions, weekly specials, and monthly events at Wheels Skate Center in Odenton, MD.