Tips for Extending the Life of Your Ice Skates

Written By: Riedell | May 25, 2022

Taken care of properly, ice skates can bring joy for several years. If they’re ignored, the boots become weak and unappealing, and the blades become dull and rusted. Like all sporting equipment, your ice-skating boots require tender love and care. The more work you put into them, the better you’ll feel and the more passionate about skating you’ll be.

Riedell Ice manufactures quality ice skates for competitors and casual skaters alike, from children to adult sizes. This post will cover how best to take care of your ice skating boots and blades so you can use them for years to come.

Cleaning Your Ice Skate Boots

Keeping your boots clean is about more than maintaining a good appearance. Ice skating boots kept free of grime and stains will prevent premature deterioration of the material, and the type of product you use to clean your boot will depend on how it’s made.

Note: Before cleaning your boots, you’ll want to remove the laces and insoles for an easier, more thorough clean.

Leather Boots

For cleaning the exterior of leather ice skating boots, avoid using a simple soap and water mix. You should use cleaning products made specifically for leather, like saddle soap. Traditional soap can cause the leather to become dry and crack. We also recommend using Silicone Protectant to prevent moisture buildup. Sno Seal® can also be used for leather outsoles and protect the boot from moisture buildup. 

PVC & Microfiber Boots

For ice skating boots made of other materials like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or microfiber, try to use a soft brush or cloth with warm water (not hot) on the boot’s exterior. Avoid soap, if possible. But a little bit of soap is okay on PVC.

Unsure of what your ice skate boot is made of? Check the tag or search for the model on the ice skate manufacturer’s website.

Cleaning the Inside of Your Ice Skates

Cleaning the inside of your skates won’t do much for the longevity of the boots, but you’ll be glad to get in the habit of it – and your nose will thank you, too. There are a few ways people clean their boots, but we recommend using water with a little bit of vinegar. Scrub with a towel and then air dry. 

Sharpening & Cleaning Your Ice Skate Blades

When it comes to sharpening your skating blades, we highly recommend you take the skates to a sporting goods shop or ice skate dealer for sharpening – preferably a place known for sharpening figure skating blades. For instance, hockey skates are sharpened differently than figure skates.

Cleaning Your Blades

Wipe them when you first get off the ice to help prevent rust prior to attaching your blade guards. Then, use a simple cloth rag or towel to wipe off dirt and grime. Avoid using soap on your blades. If tough-to-remove muck or grease ends up on the blade, use hot water with a soft brush.  

Use Blade Guards

Competitors and experienced skaters know it’s important to utilize accessories that protect your skates. Blade guards protect your ice-skating blades from dings and dents and help keep blades sharp. They also help prevent rips or holes the blades may cause in other materials like bags and vehicle seats. Use hard blade guards when walking with your skates on, and remember to switch to soft ones after wiping your blades.

How Long Do Figure Skate Blades Last?

Depending on the blade build and amount of use, figure skating blades and ice skate blades, in general, should last at least four years. If you’re skating hard every day, depending on your amount of sharpening, blades will usually last one to two or three years. Quality ice skates may last several years longer, depending on the skater’s investment of time and maintenance.

What to Do With Your Ice Skates When You’re Not Using Them

Store your ice skates in a dry place, like in a cardboard box in a closet with little moisture. Keep the skates wrapped in something soft and be sure to remove the blade guards before storage, leaving the guards somewhere nearby so they’re ready when you take the skates out to use again.

Over 75 Years of Quality Ice Skate Production

From high-end competitor models to affordable, family-friendly models, Riedell Ice manufactures a wide selection of ice skates for skaters at every level. Find a dealer near you to see what’s available.