It’s normal to assume that the quality of a ping pong racket deteriorates depending on the frequency of use. However, while this may be true , it’s more accurate to say that proper maintenance goes a long way to significantly slow down this deterioration process.
For more savvy ping pong players, deterioration doesn’t necessarily mean breaking of the handle , or the rubber padding coming off. Maintenance is more important in keeping the quality of the bat intact in terms of the performance rating – speed, spin and control.
The rubber coming off the blade, or the handle breaking accidentally doesn’t necessarily affect that. However, keeping every small but significant part of the paddle alive is. Little things such as dust, accumulating on the surface of the blade over a period of time could compromise the springiness or gripping ability of the rubber and prevent your shots from going where you placed them.
Also, poor maintenance could make the rubber smoother, and reduce the accuracy of the racket. Therefore, it’s not only important to clean your ping pong paddle, but also more important to do it right.
How to Clean Your Ping Pong / Table Tennis Paddle
There are more than one ways to clean your paddle, and each method requires a certain amount of know-how and delicacy. If you engage one method with an uneducated skill set, you might end up damaging the paddle you’re so intent on preserving.
The methods discussed thus will be based on the solution used, in what quantity they should be used and how they are best applied.
- Water :
This is the simplest and cheapest solution used for cleaning ping pong rackets. However, you can’t just rinse it with your bare hands and expect the dirt to come off. You can either use a soft sponge or a tooth brush to cover the hard-to-reach spots between the pimples on the surface of the blade. Even though it’s just water, you have to be delicate about its use.
For sponges, dampen the sponge and gently wipe the surface of the blade with it. Take your time with it, but make sure that the water in the sponge is not so much that the paddle becomes dripping wet.
Also, it’s best to wipe the surface in a straight line (from the bottom of the paddle to the top), or in a circular motion (from the outermost part towards the center of the blade). This way, you can keep track of the areas you have touched and get all the dirt out without much trouble.
You could try the same with a soft-toothed brush. This has proven to be more effective. However, whichever you end up using, avoid rigorous scrubbing to avoid compromising the roughness of the paddle unintentionally.
- Rubber Cleaning Solutions :
Clearly, rubber cleaning solutions are more delicate. There are lots of rubber cleaning solutions on the market today that come in different forms such as foams and sprays. They are more efficient than plain water and sponges as they help to cut out the dirt that has built up to level up the paddle and make it smoother than it should be. However, it’s more advisable to only try this if plain water doesn’t do the job.
There’s a lot of controversy on the use of rubber on the market today. Some users have complained that rubber cleaning solutions could be too sensitive for the rubber type on your racket and could deteriorate your rubber faster. If you’re scared of that, you could go for less potent solutions that work just a little better than ordinary water.
To be safer, make sure that every trace of the solution is gently wiped off the surface of the rubber after cleaning, because residues could do more damage (such as oxidization or aging) than overused sensitive chemicals. The method of application is the same as for using water, although it’s not reasonable to use a brush with cleaning solutions. Use a softer material like a towel or tissue paper.
There’s more focus on cleaning the blade then the handle because that’s the most vulnerable spot on the paddle. You can clean the handle of the paddle with a clean cloth every once in a while to keep it clean.
Also, after cleaning with whichever solution, leave the paddle on a similarly clean surface for it to dry off before returning it into its case. Avoid the use of detergents and always keep your paddle covered when it’s not in use.
If you’re looking to purchase new paddles , have a look at our buyers guide : https://pingthatpong.com/best-ping-pong-paddle/
Hey! , I am Roland Campbell , a 24 years old Computer Science student and a lover of table tennis. Pingthatpong is where i share tips and journal my experience playing the game of table tennis.