Every skater knows to change their skateboard wheels when they show signs of wear and tear. The apparent signs include flat spots, cone shapes, varying diameters, and unusual sounds.
When you start noticing these, you know that your skateboard wheels have exceeded their lifespan. So, how long do skateboard wheels last?
How Long Do Skateboard Wheels Last?
This question does not have a simple answer. The length of time skateboard wheels last depends on many factors. This guide will examine these factors in depth.
On average, a skateboard used for several hours daily must have its wheels changed between 2-4 months. This timeframe considers factors like the frequency of use, the skater’s skills, and the tricks performed with the skateboard.
Skaters who do not use their skateboards often will not have to change their wheels as often. These types of skaters can use their skateboard wheels for years. This may seem far-fetching, but the truth lies in how well you take care of your skateboard’s wheels and other parts.
What Determines How Long Skateboards Wheels Last?
What determines how long skateboard wheels last longer than most skaters think? Here are a few factors determining how long skateboard wheels last.
The first factor is you have to get skateboard wheels of good quality if you want them to last. Skateboard wheels are made of urethane, a hardened type of rubber. However, not all board wheels are created equal. Get quality wheels suitable for your use, lasting up to the expected time, and more.
Frequency of Use
It is not difficult to understand that advanced skaters spend more time on their skateboards than beginner skaters. These dedicated skaters usually spend hours daily skating in parks, mini ramps, and outdoor surfaces that may cause considerable wear. If you are in this category, you will need to change your wheels in 2-3 months.
There is a lot you can do on a skateboard. You can do flip tricks, powerslides, and other complex tricks like professional skaters. However, you need to know that your skating style will cause your wheels to wear more quickly than someone doing casual skating.
If you prefer to show off your technical skills on more expansive running surfaces, you will need to change your wheels more often.
How to Make Your Skateboard Wheels Last Longer
You can make your skateboard wheels last longer by following basic care rules. While you may understand your riding style and speed, there is more to know. Here are a few things that will help make your skateboard wheels last longer if you know how to do them.
Buy Quality Products
The first way to make your wheels last longer is to purchase products that can last long. Buying an average product and expecting it to last is foolish.
Professional skaters invest in expensive wheels that can handle the complexity of their tricks. As a street skater, you don’t have to do so. Instead, you can go for the type of wheels guaranteeing you six months or more of bowl skating.
A golden rule is to always take proper care of your skateboard wheels. You can increase the lifespan of your set of wheels if you clean them after every use and store them in regulated conditions.
Avoid rough surfaces if you can, and decrease the wheel bite. Being careful will enable you to have smoother rides and skate for longer with the same set of wheels.
Rotate the Wheels
This is a trick that many advanced skaters use. If you skate on rough surfaces or do complex tricks, you can make your wheels last longer by rotating them from time to time. Doing this will require you to change the positions of the wheels every 2-3 months.
What you need to do is to switch the rear wheels with the opposing front wheels. This way, you can prevent one-sided or partial wear.
Things to Consider When Buying Skateboard Wheels
You must have realized from all you have read that buying skateboard wheels is a serious task. The choices you make then will determine how long your skateboard wheels last. Therefore, you need to examine all variables to decide on the best skateboard wheels for you. Here are some things to consider:
Quality of the Materials
You must prioritize the quality of your skateboard wheels’ materials. Different skateboard wheels are designed to suit varying needs. Therefore, check the one that suits your preferences and search for reviews from previous customers.
Getting the perfect wheel to last more than a couple of months requires you to pay for the value. However, you should not assume that costly wheels will automatically be better than lower-priced ones.
Some manufacturers deliberately put high price tags on average wheels. Meanwhile, some cheap wheels are of better quality. So just ensure you are getting the value for the price you are paying.
Size of the Wheels
The size of the wheels you are getting matters significantly. This is one of the most important factors that people overlook. Larger wheels provide better traction if you prefer skate parks and outdoor surfaces to smooth surfaces.
The size of the skateboard wheels is measured in millimeters. The average size is between 50-63mm. However, getting 54-56mm wheels is enough to do all you want.
Aggressive skaters prefer the biggest wheels to cushion the effect of their skating style. Common signs that your wheels are too small include uneven wear, reduced bearing speed, and difficulty skating on smooth surfaces.
Type of the Wheels
Beginner skaters usually know little about the type of wheels they are buying. This is why many of them struggle to skate for an extended period. The simple guide is to always consider the wheel hardness (durometer). Harder wheels are recommended for beginners because it is easier to learn to skate with them.
Professional skaters go for softer wheels that allow them to perform all their complex tricks. In addition, soft wheels are generally easier to maneuver and provide a smoother ride.
Finally, you should remember to consider your intended use. If you are just learning to ride a skateboard, your usage will differ from that of advanced skaters. You should opt for board wheels designed with the hardness to survive crashing into surfaces as you learn.
Dedicated skaters prefer classic wheels with the strength to survive challenging riding conditions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Skaters always want to make their skateboard wheels last as long as possible. Unfortunately, this may cause many to question how to achieve their goal. You can find answers to some of the common questions in this section.
When should wheels be replaced?
You should replace your wheels when you notice signs of wear and tear. They include flat surfaces, conning issues, and reduced speed. Replacing wheels is easy as they’re easy to disassemble and reassemble.
How often should you clean skateboard bearings?
The well-being of your skateboard bearings affects the wheels, so you need to pay equal attention to them. For example, a dirty bearing will prevent a smoother ride until you clean it. This task can be accomplished easily with household items like nail polish remover and some vaseline. On the other hand, a bad bearing will also make for a bumpy ride, so you should equally follow basic care rules with your wheel bearings.
How do you know when your wheels are bad?
You may find it interesting that one of the most popular questions people ask about wheels does not directly relate to skateboard wheels. Instead, it is about truck bushes but somewhat connects to board wheels. You know your mid truck’s wheels are impaired when you sense some vibration in the steering wheel, uneven tire tread wear, and increased noise.
The construction of skateboard wheels is similar to steel trucks, so knowing this may help you. Next, look for obvious signs like uneven wear and low-quality bushings, and you have your answer.
We have covered the average time for professionals, and casual skaters regarding how long do skateboard wheels last. The former need to change their wheels between 2-4 months while the latter can use their skates for an extended period.
We have also covered the factors determining your skateboard’s longevity and how to make it last longer. The latter part of the guide contains elements you need to consider when buying skateboard wheels and answers some popular questions.