I know that many of you reading my article want to skate outside in the rain since you are very addicted to skateboarding. However, is this even possible? What if you left your skateboard outside in the rain or it fell on the swimming pool? Can your skateboard get wet when you accidentally or intentionally splash water on it? Let us find out!
Can skateboards get wet? Yes! Skateboards can get wet. Skateboarding in the rain or water can damage your skateboard. The board of yours will become waterlogged and warp, the bearings will rust and lose lubrication, and your grip tape will get loose. If you have lots of money to get a new skateboard, then go ahead and skate in the rain.
Yes! You can dry and re-lubricate your hardware after they get wet and save them. However, your deck and grip tape cannot be saved. That is why it is very critical to prevent your skateboard from getting wet. It is a common problem for skateboarders since they cannot skate when it is raining.
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Can A Skateboard Get Wet?
Your skateboard should not get wet but it can get wet.
Some parts of your skateboard can be saved but the wood of your deck will be permanently damaged, which you should avoid if you don’t want to spend some money again. Once the water gets inside the wood fibers, they naturally expand. This distorts the shape of your board! The glue will also begin to fail due to the changing shape of the board.
However, you can’t predict or fully know how and when the glue in your skateboard might fail. You might think that your board is fine to ride still and technically you can still ride it actually. But, you will notice that it no longer pops the same and that it will break easier than a well-cared skateboard.
If the board is from your kid or for a young kid who is not into tricks, then you don’t have to worry about it. Your kid will be a kid. He/she will leave the board out in the rain because kids are naturally careless. Kids can still ride a waterlogged skateboard and they won’t notice much of a difference. However, if your kid tries to learn a trick, you have to get him/her a new board.
I advise you to not try skateboarding in the rain and make sure that your shoes are not wet when you step on your skateboard. You should also avoid wet grass, puddles, and tiles. However, even though you did not skate on wet surfaces, if your shoes are wet, then it has no difference from skateboarding on wet surfaces.
What Happens When Your Skateboard Gets Wet?
Skateboards are not surfer boards that can get wet. They were not designed for water. The oil that lubricates the bearings of your skateboard will wash away. Water will find its way between the epoxied layers of your board and weaken the adhesive. Your board will warp and become more brittle.
The worst thing that might happen is that the water ruins your board. However, bearings can be cleaned, re-lubricated, and saved. Steel trucks won’t rust and moisture can be cleaned off of components that contain iron.
But if your board becomes waterlogged, it will never be the same before when you buy it from the store. The feeling will be soggy and damp. Your board will become heavier and not pop the same. The wood of your skateboard will become weakened and more susceptible to brittle fracture. This is where your board gets the real damage.
So if you don’t want your skateboard to feel that way, then stay away from wet surfaces and don’t wander under the rain while skateboarding. You will regret skateboarding on wet surfaces I tell you.
What Should You Do When Your Skateboard Gets Wet?
It is inevitable for most skateboarders out there to get their skateboards wet. If it is just a splash of water from a puddle or water from a light drizzle, then it is not a big deal and you don’t have to worry about it. However, if you leave your skateboard outside in a storm, strong rain, or big puddle, you have to do some maintenance, which I will teach you right now!
If your skateboard gets wet, do the following things listed below:
- Remove it from the water source.
- If your board is visibly wet, use a dry towel to pat dry the exterior including the grip tape of your skateboard.
- Remove the trucks and hardware from the deck itself. Use again your towel to pat dry where the hardware connects to the board.
- Use the heat of the sun to dry your skateboard if the sun is out. However, if the sun is hiding and still raining, then let it air out in a dry open space like your garage. Never attempt to use the heat dry because it can damage the glue holding your board together.
- Remove the wheels and bearings of your skateboard from your hardware. Use some paper towels to dry out the bearings and wheels. Buy a WD-40 or skate-specific bearing lubricant and put a little bit on your bearings using an old toothbrush if you have one. By doing this, it will stop your bearings from getting damaged later on.
- Give your board and components some time to dry. A day or two should be fine unless the local humidity is off the charts.
- Put your skateboard’s parts in the right place and get out there again to skate. However, make sure that you try your best to prevent your skateboard from getting wet.
That’s it! That is all the steps you have to follow when your skateboard gets wet. Don’t be lazy because doing these steps is very essential. The long your board and hardware are exposed to water, the more likely they will end up becoming damaged.
How To Fix Wet Skateboard Bearings?
This question was answered above already but let me answer it again here since many are asking about this.
Follow the given steps below to fix the wet bearings of your skateboard:
- Remove your hardware from your skateboard.
- Remove your wheels and bearings from your skateboard.
- Dry your bearings with a dry towel.
- Put some WD-40 or other lubricant on your bearings.
- Put your board back together and perform skateboarding tricks again!
The bearings of your skateboard are not that expensive, but you should always try or attempt to save them when you can. Don’t be lazy! Being a wasteful person is not a good idea even if you have lots of money. So never neglect the bearings of your skateboard and always do some maintenance on it.
How To Know If Your Skateboard Is Waterlogged?
When your skateboard becomes waterlogged, there isn’t much you can do to save your skateboard. You of course can still skate on it but it won’t pop the same and the board itself will become loosen as the wood warps and the epoxy holding the board together is affected.
You can know if your skateboard is waterlogged by doing the following below:
- Feel the deck with your hand to see you can feel moisture.
- Drop the deck onto concrete and listen to the sound of it. Does it sound dull and muted? If it does not sound right, then your skateboard is most likely water-logged.
- Ride your skateboard and perform an ollie or other skateboarding tricks that you can execute properly which requires you to pop the tail. Does it feel heavier than before? Is the sound of the pop duller? If yes, then your board is water-logged.
The best way to diagnose a waterlogged board is by the sound your board makes and by how it rides. You will be able to tell the difference between both. Your board might also simply feel like it is holding some kind of moisture when you touch it. If your skateboard gets wet, check if it becomes water-logged.
How To Fix A Waterlogged Skateboard?
If you found out that your board was waterlogged, then there is no fix for it. You should save some money and look for another board and maybe keep this one around just in case you want to ride your skateboard during rainy days.
I know this is sad to hear, but a waterlogged board simply will never pop like it used to before. It will also break easier, and the wood of the board will likely start to warp and change shape. Water will expand the wood fibers and degrade the glue between the layers of your board.
You become careless and the damage has already been done. You have nothing to do about it. So get a new board and this time be more careful and cautious to prevent your board from getting wet.
Can You Skateboard On Wet Roads?
To be honest with you, you can ride on wet roads with your skateboard. But you risk hydroplaning and you will lose control of your board much easier. It is very risky to skate on wet roads. Also, like I have mentioned multiple times in this article, getting your skateboard wet will damage it potentially beyond repair.
Skateboarding on wet roads is possible but it is not a good idea, generally speaking. The skateboard’s wheels will easily slip causing you to fall more often than usual. The moisture will likely soak into your board and hardware causing damage. If it is wet outside, the best thing to do is to go to an indoor skatepark.
However, if you really want to skate in the rain, use an old or cheap skateboard that you don’t care about damaging. Find spots with coarse concrete so that the wheels don’t slip so easily and try only to skate flatground.
A half-pipe or bowl is not possible to skate in the rain. You will just slip out and will hurt yourself. If you are very unlucky, you can get a severe injury. Some people think that skateboarding in the rain is not a bad idea and only does minimal damage. However, to be honest, it is very risky. Not just with your board, but for yourself too. You can get your head whack when you fall and your board might get waterlogged.
Is It Better To Skate During Winter Or Summer?
The answer to this question is very obvious. It is better to skateboard during summer, of course. Why? Yes! It is hot. But your skateboard and you are both safe. Your skateboard won’t get wet because of the rain or snow and you will not get accidents due to slipping because the surface is wet.
Is Cold Bad For A Skateboard?
Sometimes, if we are not skateboarding, we store our skateboard in the trunk of our car, garage, or terrace. These places are not temperature controlled, and your board might get very hot or cold, especially during summer or winter. But does coldness damage your board? Yes or no?
To be honest with you, cold weather will never damage your board. During winter, some materials shrink which causes stress and cracking in brittle materials. Concrete is a good example and this causes potholes. Wood, on the other hand, is flexible and cold temperatures won’t cause it to get cracked. The skateboard’s metal hardware components will also be generally unaffected.
Yes! Your board might experience some mechanical stress from becoming extremely cold so if this gets you anxious just bring your whole skateboard inside your house.
To conclude, skateboards can get wet, and they can destroy your skateboard. That is why you have to act cautiously during the winter or rainy season. If you are not cautious with what you are doing, your skateboard is at risk, and also you. You can get injured when you try to skate in the rain.