How to Clean Roller Skate Wheels: A Step-by-Step Guide

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Regular cleaning of roller skate wheels is essential for them to stay in their best condition; otherwise, they can become less efficient or stop working altogether – leading to an expensive repair bill.

To Clean Roller Skate Wheels, follow these steps:

  1. Gather Your Materials.
  2. Removing the Wheels.
  3. Removing the Bearings.
  4. Cleaning the Wheels.
  5. Cleaning the Bearings.
  6. Replacing the Bearings.
  7. Remounting the Wheels.
  8. Adjusting Your Wheels.
How to Clean Roller Skate Wheels

How to Clean Roller Skate Wheels

Keeping your roller skate wheels clean is essential in order to ensure safe and efficient skating. You first need to know how to remove your wheels so that you can get the best possible clean.

1. Gather Your Materials

Before you begin cleaning your roller skate wheels, it is important to make sure you have all the materials you will need. First and foremost, obviously, are the skates! You’ll also need a skate tool – available for around $10 at sports shops – for taking off and putting back on the wheels.

Additionally, you should have a bowl or bucket handy to soak the wheels in soapy water, as well as two small towels and some paper towels. Lastly, make sure to pick up some dish soap that won’t damage or corrode your wheels. Once you are ready with your supplies, you’re well on your way to clean roller skate wheels!

2. Removing the Wheels

Removing the wheels from your roller skates is an important step in cleaning them. Start by using a skate tool or ½ inch nut driver to loosen the wheel’s nuts, then unscrew them with your hands. Turn the skate tool in a ratcheting motion turning to the left to get the nuts loose.

Once undone, pull off the wheel from its base. Repeat for all eight of your wheels, keeping the nuts together so you don’t lose any of them. Finally, set aside your boots so they don’t get wet during cleaning.

3. Removing the Bearings

If you want to give your roller skate wheels a deep clean, the first step is to remove the bearings so that they don’t rust. This process can easily be done with a bearing tool. Simply insert the angled end with the rubbery band into the hole of each bearing and apply gentle pressure until it pops out.

Don’t force it – if you have trouble prying one out, try a different point inside the bearing in a circular motion. There should be two bearings for each wheel, for a total of 16, so make sure to keep them organized in a neat pile. Once you’ve removed all of them, you’ll be ready to deep clean your wheel!

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4. Cleaning the Wheels

Cleaning roller skate wheels is easy and can be done with a few simple steps. Begin by mixing warm water and dish soap in a bowl. This mixture should be slightly soapy but not overly bubbly, so add more soap if necessary.

Next, take one of the towels and wet it in the soapy water then wring out most of the excess moisture. You want the towel to be damp but not soaking wet. Then scrub the outside of each wheel with this damp cloth to remove all gunk and dirt buildup on your wheels – they’ll look much better afterward!

If you’re feeling extra fancy, you can even clean inside the holes of each wheel by dunking them in the soapy water and swishing them around (although don’t do this if your cores are made out of metal or aluminum since they may rust). Finally use another towel to dry off each wheel once you’ve cleaned all eight of them. Voila – clean wheels ready for their next ride!

5. Cleaning the Bearings

Cleaning the bearings of your roller skate wheels is a simple process. All you need to do is grab a paper towel and wipe away any dirt and grime that has built up on the surface.

To clean a bearing, you can use your fingernail to get the dirt out of its creases and roll up a paper towel into a tube shape to make sure everything is wiped away.

6. Replacing the Bearings

Replacing the bearings in your roller skates is an easy and straightforward job. To begin, you’ll want to take the bearing and gently press it into the wheel until it’s flat. This might take a little pressure, but don’t worry – you won’t damage your skates if you’re doing this correctly.

Once the bearing has been pushed in securely, repeat for all sixteen of your bearings. With new bearings in place, you’ll be skating smoother and faster than ever!

7. Remounting the Wheels

Remounting the wheels is an important step when it comes to cleaning roller skate wheels. Start by connecting the skate trucks to the wheels of one of your skates. Slide the wheel onto the post and use a nut to secure the wheel in place, tightened by hand as much as possible.

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Take a skate tool and tighten each nut, creating a clockwise, ratcheting motion until you can no longer move the wheel. Repeat this process with all eight wheels until they are tight up against the skates so that they do not move.

Finally, adjust them so that they fit your preference – this will ensure that you have safely remounted your wheels!

8. Adjusting Your Wheels

Adjusting your wheels is an important part of maintaining your roller skates. Once all of your wheels are tight, the first step is to use the skate tool to loosen them in increments of a quarter turn until you achieve the desired tightness.

Remember that each skater has their own preference, so if you’re not sure what’s best for you, find someone who can help you get a feel for it.

Once you have adjusted the wheel to your liking, make sure everything is secure and check that they do not move or rattle around. Once all of this is done – congratulations! Your wheels are squeaky clean and ready for some fun on the track.

What Can You Use To Clean Your Roller Skate Wheels?

If you’re wondering what can be used to clean your roller skate wheels, the answer is simple: warm soapy water! Soak your wheels in water and scrub them using a brush or cloth until all the dirt and debris have been eliminated. After cleaning them, rinse them with water and let them air dry for the best results.

This easy cleaning routine will ensure that your wheels are always ready to roll! And if you need even more power against dirt and grime, you can invest in some special skate cleaner designed specifically for keeping roller skate wheels squeaky clean.

Either way, no matter what product you use, regular cleaning of your wheels is essential for keeping them as reliable as ever!

How often should you clean your skate wheels?

Skaters should clean their skate wheels at least once a month. When they do, they should remove the wheels from the skates, rinse them off with soap and water, and then dry them thoroughly before putting them back on the skates. Doing this regularly will help ensure that the wheels last longer and don’t become worn down from skating.

In addition to cleaning their wheels, skaters should also make sure to clean their bearings on a regular basis.

To do so, use a clean cloth and make sure not to get any water or other liquids inside the bearings. By taking proper care of your skate wheels and bearings, you can enjoy your favorite hobby for years to come!

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How do you lubricate roller skate wheels?

Lubricating your roller skate wheels is essential for reducing friction and preventing wear. To properly lubricate them, you need to use a silicon-based lubricant, which you can apply using a cloth or brush.

Make sure to spread the lubricant evenly over the wheels by rotating them slowly, then wipe away any excess after a few minutes. Taking good care of your roller skate wheels can help them last for a long time.


Can you use WD40 on skate bearings?

Skate bearings should not be lubricated with WD40, since it contains petroleum. Skateboard bearings are made of steel, meaning they can be damaged by petroleum-based products, leading to potential failure.

Can you clean roller skate wheels with alcohol?

Absolutely! Isopropyl alcohol is a great way to get your skate wheels sparkling clean. It dissolves dirt and grime, and it won’t leave behind any residue when it evaporates quickly. Plus, paper towels are lint-free and offer streak-free cleaning so nothing will interfere with your skating session.

Does water ruin roller skates?

If water gets into roller skate bearings, they will quickly rust, leading to the skates becoming unusable. It is a fact that water can be damaging to roller skates.

Should I oil my skates?

Skaters should clean and oil their bearings on a regular basis, as dryness is an indicator that they need lubrication.

How do I make my skate wheels white again?

To efficiently clean your wheels, let them soak in hot water and a few drops of dish soap. The soap will break up the grease and oils that would otherwise be hard to remove, especially near the bearings.


Maintaining clean roller skate wheels is essential for optimal performance and longevity. Regular cleaning not only enhances the skates’ maneuverability but also ensures a smoother and safer skating experience. By following the simple yet effective steps outlined in this guide, skaters can easily remove dirt, debris, and grime from their wheels, preserving their quality and maximizing their lifespan. Remember, a little maintenance goes a long way in keeping your roller skate wheels in top condition, allowing you to enjoy your skating adventures to the fullest.

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Joseph E. Bogle

This is Joseph E. Bogle, the founder and lead writer of, an enthusiast of skating for over a decade. I'm an aggressive skater and certified skating coach, dedicated to sharing his knowledge and passion for skating with others through his blog. With my unique combination of personal experience and professional expertise, is a valuable resource for skaters of all levels, from beginners to advanced athletes.