How to Clean a Football [The Easy Way!]

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How to clean a football.

Footballs are one of the most important pieces of equipment for any football player. Not only do they need to be in good condition to play well, but they also need to be properly cleaned and looked after.

But cleaning a dirty football and freeing it from turf stains, mud and scuffs is not always as easy as it seems! If you’re not careful, you can end up damaging the ball or making it dirtier than it was before!

That’s why we’ve put together this helpful guide on how to clean a football the easy way.

With our tips, you’ll be able to get your football looking and feeling like new in no time!

How to clean a football ball step-by-step

What You’ll Need

To clean your football, you’ll need the following supplies:

-A bucket

-Warm water

-Mild soap or detergent

-A soft cloth

-A toothbrush (optional)

-A pump (optional)

Step 1: Fill Up Your Bucket

Some people are ok with using the sink at home. But we prefer to keep the mud and grime to the outdoors and use a bucket!

Fill up your bucket with warm water. You don’t want the water to be too hot, as this could damage the ball.

Just use whatever temperature is comfortable for you to touch. Then, add a small amount of mild soap or detergent to the water and stir it around until it’s evenly mixed in.

step 1 fill bucket photo instructions

Step 2: Submerge the Ball

Next, carefully submerge your football in the soapy water.

Let it soak for a few minutes so that the dirt and grime have a chance to loosen up.

Step 3: Scrub the Ball

After a few minutes have passed, take your soft cloth and start scrubbing the ball gently. Focus on areas that seem particularly dirty or stained.

If there are any stubborn spots that won’t come off with the cloth, try using a toothbrush instead. Just be sure not to scrub too hard, as this could damage the ball’s surface.

You can use a coarse sponge or a Brillo pad but don’t be tempted to use anything like wire wool as this will damage the surface too.

step3 image scrub the ball 2

Step 4: Rinse Off the Ball

Once you’re satisfied with how clean the ball is, lift it out of the bucket and rinse it off with some clean water. You can use a hose for this too.

Be sure to get rid of all of the soap suds before moving on to the next step.

Step 5: Dry Off the Ball

Now that your ball is clean, it’s time to dry it off. You can either let it air dry or use a towel to speed up the process.

Just make sure that it’s completely dry before moving on to Step 6—if not, mould could start growing on the ball!

step 5 dry the ball. man dries the ball with a soft cloth

Step 6: Pump Up The Ball (optional)

If you have a pump, now is a good time to use it and inflate your football back up to its proper size.

If you don’t have a pump or if your ball doesn’t need inflating, then you can skip this step!

And there you have it – a pristine football!

Watch and learn: How to clean a football.

Here’s a great video that shows you how to clean your football step by step, and some top tips to keep your match ball in great condition.

How do you keep a football clean?

Just like having a clean kit, a clean football is essential for playing your best game. Here are a few tips to help you keep your ball clean and in good condition.

First, always remove any dirt or grass from the surface of the ball before storing it. This will help to prevent the build-up of grime and stains.

Second, if the ball becomes wet, be sure to dry it off completely before storing it. Wet balls can develop mould and mildew, which can shorten their lifespan.

If your ball starts to develop any cuts or splits, be sure to apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly. This will help to protect the ball from further damage and keep it looking its best.

By following these simple tips, you can ensure that your football will stay clean and in good condition for years to come.

how to clean a football infographic advice - cleaning a football is important because it will extend the lifespan of the ball. A clean ball is also less likely to develop cuts and splits which can be difficult to repair.

Can you put a football in the washing machine?

You might be surprised to learn that you can put a football in the washing machine! But we wouldn’t recommend it!

Washing machines are designed for laundry, not footballs. The harsh detergents and high temperatures can damage the ball’s surface, making it more likely to develop cuts and tears.

If your ball is very dirty, it’s best to clean it by hand.

If you have to put it in the washing machine, just be sure to use a gentle cycle and cold water, as heat can damage the ball.

It’s also a good idea to place the ball in a mesh laundry bag to protect it from getting snagged on other items in the wash.

Let it air dry completely before using it again. Did you know, you can put your football boots in the washing machine too!

The final score.

And there you have it—a step-by-step guide on how to clean a football like a pro!

With these simple tips, you’ll be able keep your football looking brand new season after season. So what are you waiting for? Grab a bucket and get started!

This article was written by

  • Anna Adams, Creative Director & Content Lead

    Hi there! I'm Anna Adams, your go-to source for all things women's football. I've been crazy about football for over 20 years, ever since I was kicking a ball around with my brothers as a kid. I've turned my passion into a career where I get to share all the cool stuff about football with you. As a content lead, I've had the awesome opportunity to work with various sports brands and publications. Whether it's the latest gear, pro tips, or just some cool football trivia, I'm all about making f...