Why Do Skateboard Wheels Turn Yellow? (Explained)

Learn why skateboard wheels turn yellow, how to prevent it, and how to clean them in this beginner's guide to skateboard wheel maintenance.

If you’re a skater, you know how frustrating it can be to watch your once-pristine wheels slowly turn white to yellow. It’s not just an aesthetic issue—yellowing can affect the performance of your skateboard. But fear not, my fellow wheel enthusiasts—we’ve got you covered.

In this post, you’ll learn about the science behind why skateboard wheels turn yellow, how to prevent them, and how to clean yellowed wheels like a pro. Get ready to keep those wheels in pristine shape.

Why do skateboard wheels turn yellow? Skateboard wheels turn yellow due to exposure to UV light. This is caused by a chemical reaction that happens when the UV light breaks down the polyurethane material in the wheels.

What is a skateboard wheel?

A skateboard wheel is a crucial component of a skateboard that is mounted on the axle and facilitates movement and turning of the board. Skateboard wheels are typically made of polyurethane and come in various sizes, shapes, and hardness levels, depending on the type of skating and personal preference. The size of skateboard wheels is an important factor that can affect the skateboard’s speed and agility.

Image of skateboard wheel. Source: robert kostrucha, pexels
Image of skateboard wheel. Source: robert kostrucha, pexels
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My favorite wheels (at the moment):

Spitfire Classic Skateboard Wheels

Why do skateboard wheels turn yellow? (explained) | 61cahmq78ml. Ac sl1050 | skateboard salad
My favorite wheels (at the moment):

Spitfire Classic Skateboard Wheels

These are the quintessential street skateboarding wheels. These wheels are very hard and therefore are not great on bumpy roads, but for street skating tricks, they are awesome and really, really smooth.

Why do skateboard wheels turn yellow?

Skateboard wheels turn yellow due to various reasons. The most common cause is the breakdown of the polyurethane material they are made of, which is caused by exposure to UV light or sunlight.

In addition to UV light exposure, skateboard wheels can turn yellow due to heat, aging, and wear and tear. Exposure to high temperatures can cause the plastic to break down, yellowing the wheels. Friction against the ground can also cause the wheels to heat up, change color, and become more brittle over time, leading to the yellowing of the plastic.

…skateboard wheels can absorb dirt, oils, and other materials from the ground, which can contribute to their yellowing…

Moreover, skateboard wheels can absorb dirt, oils, and other materials from the ground, which can contribute to their yellowing over time.

Why is it important to take care of your skateboard wheels?

Skateboard wheels play a crucial role in the overall performance of a skateboard, affecting factors like speed, maneuverability, and agility. So, taking care of your skateboard’s wheels is important to ensure they work well and last as long as possible. Regular maintenance, like cleaning and turning the wheels, can help keep them from wearing out and needing to be replaced too quickly.

It is suggested that skateboard wheels be replaced every two to three months, depending on usage. Proper maintenance can also help prevent the wheels from yellowing over time.

Image of a colorful skateboard with white wheels. Source: pixabay
Image of a colorful skateboard with white wheels. Source: pixabay

What are some of the best skateboard wheel cleaners?

Soap and Water, while not a specialized product, is a simple mixture that can effectively clean your skateboard wheels. Just be sure to dry them thoroughly to prevent rust and corrosion.

Keeping your skateboard wheels clean is important to maintain their performance and extend their lifespan. Regular cleaning can help remove dirt, debris, and grime, slowing down your board and making it less responsive.

Preventing skateboard wheels from turning yellow

To prevent skateboard wheels from turning yellow, it’s important to maintain them properly. One common reason skateboard wheels turn yellow is exposure to sunlight and heat, which causes the urethane to break down and degrade over time. To avoid this, it’s best to keep your board out of direct sunlight when not in use and to store it in a cool, dry place.

Cleaning the wheels and bearings is also important if you want your skateboard wheels to last as long as possible. When cleaning the wheels, you can use soap and water or a specialized skateboard wheel cleaner, and for the bearings, you can use a bearing cleaner to remove any dirt and debris. Protective wax or silicone sprays can also help reduce UV light’s effects.

…regularly rotating your skateboard wheels can help spread out the wear and tear…

In addition to keeping them clean, regularly rotating your skateboard wheels can help spread out the wear and tear so that no one wheel wears down more than the others.

Finally, try to skate on smooth surfaces and avoid doing too many power slides, as this can cause the wheels to wear down more quickly.

If you want even more tips and insights, watch this video called “How to Choose Skateboard Wheels | Tactics” from the Tactics Boardshop YouTube channel.

A video called d “How to Choose Skateboard Wheels | Tactics” from the Tactics Boardshop YouTube channel.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do you still have questions about why skateboard wheels turn yellow? Below are some of the most commonly asked questions.

What causes skateboard wheels to turn yellow?

Skateboard wheels turn yellow due to exposure to UV light which breaks down the polyurethane material.

Does yellowing affect skateboard wheel performance?

Yes, yellowing can affect the performance of the skateboard, as it indicates the breakdown of the material and a loss of hardness.

How can I prevent skateboard wheels from turning yellow?

You can prevent yellowing by keeping your skateboard wheels out of direct sunlight, storing them properly, and cleaning them regularly. Protective wax or silicone sprays can also help reduce UV light’s effects.

Conclusion

That’s it, folks; we’ve reached the end of our yellow-brick road to skateboard wheel maintenance. But before you roll away, let me ask you: How yellow are your wheels? In summary, we’ve explored the science behind skateboard wheel yellowing, how to prevent it, and how to clean yellowed wheels like a pro. Remember, keeping your skateboard wheels in top condition isn’t just about aesthetics; it can also impact the performance of your board. So don’t neglect your wheels, my friends.

Did we cover all the tips and tricks you were hoping for? Let me know in the comments; I read and replied to everyone. If you found this article helpful, share it with your skate crew and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on skateboarding. Until next time, keep shredding and stay gold!

Key takeaways

This article covered why skateboard wheels turn yellow. Here are some key takeaways:

Here are the key takeaways from the content:

  • Skateboard wheels turn yellow due to exposure to UV light, which breaks down the polyurethane material.
  • Yellowing can affect the performance of the skateboard, as it indicates the breakdown of the material and a loss of hardness.
  • Proper maintenance of your skateboard wheels can prevent yellowing, including keeping them out of direct sunlight, storing them properly, and cleaning them regularly.
  • Protective wax or silicone sprays can also help reduce UV light’s effects.
  • To maintain optimal performance, take proper care of your skateboard wheels and don’t neglect them.

Helpful resources

Steven Portrate
Written by Steven Sadder, Staff Writer

Hey! I'm Steven, a lifelong skater, and proud New Yorker. I’ve been skating since I was a teenager. I may be a bit older now, but I'm not slowing down. Follow me for skating tips and latest gear reviews.

Nick eggert.
Edited by Nick Eggert, Staff Editor

Nick is our staff editor and co-founder. He has a passion for writing, editing, and website development. His expertise lies in shaping content with precision and managing digital spaces with a keen eye for detail.

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