You've embraced your love of the game and decided to get a fantastic pool table for your home. You have the perfect space in the house with plenty of clearance to practice your trick shots and host all of your family and friends. However, that new table comes with some upkeep. Here's what you need to know about pool table maintenance.
Why Every Pool Table Needs Regular Care and Maintenance
While you may not realize it, your pool table takes a lot of abuse. The racking and hitting of the balls can create a lot of wear on the fabric and the frame. If you have more inexperienced players using your table, you may also deal with scuffs and tears.
To protect the longevity of your table, you'll need to make regular repairs. By consistently monitoring the status of your table and fixing issues as they arise, you'll have your table to enjoy for years to come.
Diagnosing Your Table
Start by evaluating each part of the table to see if anything is starting to get worn down. Check the felt first. If it's not smooth, you can't play well. Are there any rips or bubbles in the fabric? Do you notice spots where the felt has pulled away from the frame? Also, consider the aesthetics. Light can cause the felt to fade, and stains may happen with regular use.
Some of these issues may be simple to fix by cleaning or retucking the fabric. However, more serious issues may require you to refelt the table.
Look at the frame. Make sure your table is level so you can trust the accuracy of your shots. If you or other players tend to lean the pool stick against the frame when making shots, check for any grooves in the wood or leather. And since pool tables are often the center of the party, watch out for any water spots on the wood from drinks.
Things to Consider When Playing
One of the most important parts of billiard table maintenance is prevention, which means using your table correctly. By making sure you and other players use the proper stances and technique, you can head off frame problems and felt rips.
Start by going over the proper stances at the pool table. When the people using your table understand the right way to hold the cue and stand at the table, the risk of felt damage is reduced. Turn this into a fun lesson for your guests to make things easier.
When was the last time you cleaned your billiard balls? They may have excess chalk on them that can get stuck in the fabric and prevent them from rolling smoothly. Take time between games to clean the balls using a product like Aramith Ball Cleaner. This also gives you the chance to regularly inspect the balls for chips.
Pay Attention to Room Conditions
Many people put their pool table in an attic or basement. These rooms tend to make great game rooms because they have great space and are often not used for other purposes. However, these rooms may not be well insulated. Humidity is important because excess moisture in the air can damage your table. Check the conditions before placing a pool table in one of these areas.
Check the lighting in the room. A space that's too dim makes it hard to play your best game. However, if there is bright natural light coming through windows or skylights shining directly on your table, this could lead to your felt fading quickly.
Pool Table Maintenance 101
Learning how to care for a pool table can be simple. Start by keeping the frame clean. If you have leather trim, use a cleaner specifically made for the material. About once a week, take the time to use a soft cloth and quality furniture polish to wipe down your table's frame, legs, and sides.
Use a specialty brush to clean the felt. Pay close attention to spots where chalk and dust may have built up in the fabric. Carefully clean any stains with a gentle solution when needed. Every so often, you may find you need to replace the cloth.
To clean the holes in the table, use a vacuum attachment to make sure no dirt or dust is building up inside. And if young children are around your table, make sure they know not to put toys or small objects in the holes.
Finding a proper pool table cover is also a good idea. When you're not playing, keeping the table covered keeps it dust-free and from fading because of direct light.
A quality billiards table is a big investment, so be diligent with it.