How To Clean Your Hockey Gear

How to Clean Your Hockey Gear
Keeping your hockey gear clean is not only important for hygiene reasons, but it also helps prolong the lifespan of your equipment. Here are 5 supporting facts on how to effectively clean your hockey gear:

1. Remove all detachable equipment: Before cleaning, make sure to remove any detachable parts such as helmet visors, pads, and straps. This allows for thorough cleaning and prevents any damage to these delicate components.

2. Hand wash or machine wash: Depending on the type of equipment, you can either choose to hand wash or machine wash. Items like jerseys, socks, and base layers can be safely machine washed according to the care instructions. However, larger gear such as pads and chest protectors might need to be hand washed for better results.

3. Use mild detergent: When washing your hockey gear, always use a mild detergent to avoid any harsh chemicals that could damage the materials. Avoid bleach or any fabric softeners as they can break down the fibers of the gear.

4. Air dry your gear: After washing, it’s crucial to properly dry your equipment to prevent any unpleasant odors or mold growth. Hang your gear in a well-ventilated area or use a fan to speed up the drying process. Avoid direct sunlight or hot dryers as they can warp or shrink certain materials.

5. Regularly clean your helmet and skates: Your helmet and skates, being in direct contact with sweat and moisture, require special attention. Clean the interior padding of your helmet with a mild soap solution, and wipe down the exterior with a damp cloth. For skates, remove the blades and wipe them clean before drying thoroughly to prevent rusting.

Now, let’s address some frequently asked questions about cleaning hockey gear:

1. Can I put my hockey gear in the washing machine?
– Yes, you can machine wash certain items like jerseys, socks, base layers, and even some elbow and shin pads. However, always refer to the care instructions of your specific gear to ensure it can tolerate machine washing.

2. What if my gear has a bad odor even after washing?
– If your gear still smells after washing, you can try using a sports gear deodorizer spray or soaking your gear in a mixture of vinegar and water before washing. Additionally, regularly airing out your gear after each use can help prevent odors from developing.

3. Can I use regular detergent for washing my gear?
– It is recommended to use a mild detergent specifically designed for sports gear or a detergent that is free from harsh chemicals. Regular detergents may contain fragrances or additives that can irritate the skin or damage the gear.

4. Should I wash my hockey gear after every use?
– While washing your gear after every use might not be necessary, it is essential to let it air out properly to prevent odor and bacteria buildup. Frequency of washing depends on how often you play and how much you sweat. Washing your gear every few weeks or when it starts to smell is a good practice.

5. Can I dry my gear in a dryer?
– It is not recommended to dry your gear in a dryer as it can cause damage to certain materials, shrink the gear, or affect its protective capabilities. Air drying is the preferred method to maintain the integrity of your hockey gear.

6. How do I clean the visor of my hockey helmet?
– To clean the visor of your hockey helmet, avoid using abrasive materials that could scratch it. Instead, use a soft cloth or microfiber towel soaked in warm water and mild soap. Gently wipe the visor in a circular motion before rinsing it thoroughly and patting it dry with a clean cloth.

7. How often should I clean my hockey skates?
– It’s a good idea to wipe down your skates after each use to remove excess moisture and prevent rusting. However, a deep cleaning may be needed every few months, especially if your skates are exposed to wet or dirty ice. Use a damp cloth or a diluted vinegar solution to wipe the boot and remove any debris before drying them thoroughly.

BOTTOM LINE:
Regularly and properly cleaning your hockey gear is crucial for maintaining its performance, increasing its longevity, and ensuring personal hygiene. Follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturers, and remember to inspect your gear regularly for any signs of wear and tear.