Prepping your ski and snowboard gear for summer storage is imperative. Without proper summer maintenance, your gear can rust or bend, and you'll spend more time and money getting it repaired and less time enjoying yourself on the slopes next winter. It's a quick and easy process to take care of your equipment and you will thank yourself when winter arrives. Here's how you can properly prepare your ski and snowboard gear for the off season.
The first thing you should do to prep your equipment is to address the bindings. If you ski, you'll want to loosen your DIN settings on each toe piece, as well as move each heel piece into the ski position. This process takes the tension out of the springs, giving your gear longer life. If you snowboard, go ahead and completely remove the bindings from your board to reduce wear on the binding inserts.
It’s best to clean your skis or snowboard and rid them of dirt, salt and other unwanted materials that can build up in the snow. Using a base cleaner, scrub the base of your board. If the top is dirty you can clean it with warm water, but if you do, make sure you are extra careful to thoroughly dry every spot around your bindings.
Once everything is cleaned and tuned, you will want to apply a thick coating of wax to be left there over summer. The wax will prevent your edges from rusting while it is in storage. This layer will also seal in your clean base and keep it in better condition. Unlike a normal wax, the all purpose wax you will use for your summer coat needs to be thicker than normal and should liberally cover all surfaces of your board or skis.
With everything waxed and ready to go, it is time to consider your storage options. If you have skis, it is recommended that you bind the pair together, base to base, and do not let them touch. You can hang them in a closet, or lay them flat and slide them on a shelf or under the bed for easy storage. However you choose to store them, make sure they rest in a cool, dry place. Though it may seem tempting, do not store your equipment in an attic or garage. If you do not store your gear in a temperature controlled area, the heat and humidity that comes with the summer months can damage your skis and snowboards, causing warping or bending, while increasing the chances of rust. In extreme cases, leaving your gear in unregulated environments for the summer months can lead to de-lamination. Finally, do not allow your gear to be covered up by other storage items, such as other sports equipment, full boxes, or anything else that might be heavy enough to bend your snowboard or skis out of shape.
It may seem easier to just throw your ski and snowboard equipment in the garage and forget about them until the winter. However, if you care about your equipment or don’t want to spend money on repairs, heed our advice. The last thing you want is to find your equipment warped, rusted and ruined the next winter season. Take care of your equipment, and your equipment will take care of you.