Maintenance Tips for Your Golf Clubs

Everyone's got a favorite golf club or set of golf clubs that makes all the difference out on the links. Most golf clubs are durable, but they do show signs of wear over time, and some damage can have a negative impact on your game. They may not be as demanding as a finely tuned sports car, but golf clubs do need regular care and maintenance to deliver reliable performance.

Keep Your Clubs Clean
After playing a few holes, you'll likely find your club head grooves filled with dirt and mud. Those grooves put spin on your ball, so leaving the mess will cost you distance and control of your shots. Keep a clean towel in your golf bag and wipe the heads clean after every shot. When you get home, grab something with a point to clean out any remaining mud and grass from the grooves. Don't use anything metal to clean the clubs; you could scratch off the protective coating, leaving the heads vulnerable to rust. 

Wash Your Clubs Regularly
You may not need to wash your clubs after every game, but it's a good idea to do this every few weeks. For a quick cleaning, use a damp chamois and a little soap to wipe everything down. Dry the clubs with a clean towel. If you're using woods made from wood, this is all the cleaning they should need.

Irons occasionally need a good soak. Fill a pail with soapy water and let your irons rest in it for a while, making sure to keep the grips dry. You can use a nylon brush to scour out the grooves. After soaking, dry each club thoroughly with a clean towel, spread them out and let them air dry before returning them to your bag.

To clean the grips, use a moistened brush. Rubber grips will stand up to a little soap. Steer clear of Armor All and other cleaners for rubber and vinyl that leave a slick finish behind, or you'll be searching for your clubs in the woods after every shot.

Bag Them Up
Generally speaking, golf clubs come with their own golf bag, and this is where they should live when you're not using them. Leaving your clubs lying around increases the risk of them being kicked, stepped on or otherwise damaged. Keep your clubs are in the bag, facing the right way.

Don't forget that temperature and dampness cause metal and wood to expand and contract. Don't leave your clubs in the trunk on hot summer days or through freezing temperatures in the off season. Find a cool, dry place to store your bag and clubs.

You don't really need zippered pouches or club head covers during golf season unless you regularly play in the rain or drag your bag through the mud. If you do get caught in the rain, be sure to dry your golf bag and turn it upside down to release any water caught at the bottom. During the off season, toss a kitchen-size trash bag over the top of your clubs to keep dust away.

Get a Grip
Check your club grips on a regular basis. If the lines or dimples start to get shallow from wear, it's time to replace them. Although it looks easy, it's best to have a professional regrip a golf club, especially faster clubs like woods and low irons, so that you're not left holding the grip while you watch your club sail into the air.

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