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How Often Do You Wax A Surfboard?

   July 5th, 2022   Posted In: Articles   Tags:

How Often Do You Wax A Surfboard?

You know you’re a good surfboard owner when you wax your board. But are you doing it too little? Too much? Or maybe waxing your board never occurred to you as a task needing to be done. Just like properly caring for your wetsuit, your surfboard needs a little TLW (Tender Loving Waxing) sometimes too. 

When it comes to your surfboard, how often should you be waxing on and waxing off? (Sorry, had to.) Also, what does wax on a surfboard do? Find out everything you need to know by reading on. 

Why Wax?

Before we dive into answering the question ‘How often should you wax a surfboard?’, let’s discuss the reasoning behind needing to wax first. 

As you are already aware, a dry surfboard is typically smooth to the touch. Imagine adding water to that smoothness and you’ve got a slippery combination that inhibits you from enjoying your surf session. How are you going to pop up and ride the waves with no grip? That’s where the wax comes in. 

Surfboard wax gives you and your board traction. Instead of slipping off your board, the wax provides your feet (or wetsuit booties) with grip. The surf wax also repels water which certainly works in your favor as you’re catching waves.

Types of Wax

Designed to coat your board, surfboard wax comes in two types. There’s cold water wax and warm water wax. You might be thinking ‘Wax is wax. Why does the water temperature matter?’ – and valid question. The truth is, that a softer wax works better in cold water and a harder wax works best in warm water. This is due to melting points. 

You’ve seen a flame melt the wax in a candle. The heat turns the wax into a liquid. You don’t want that happening with your surfboard and wax. This is why a soft wax (like that of a cold water wax bar) would be pointless in warm waters. It’ll just melt or come right off the board once it hits those warm temps. The harder wax does a better job at sticking to the board in warm water temperatures while the softer wax excels at grip and traction in cold waters.

How Often Do You Wax a Surfboard?

Now that we know the very simple science behind the wax and the types of wax, as well as when to use them, how often should you be applying wax to your board? The general consensus – as often as you deem necessary. You can wax your board before each session if you see fit to do so. 

Now, with that logic, we highly recommend that you do a full cleaning and re-waxing every two to three months. Unless you surf every day and wax every day, then we recommend cleaning your board slightly more often per season/year. 

You can’t just keep piling dirty/sandy wax on top of the wax and hoping for the best. Think of it as a seasonal cleaning task. Once a season (or more if need be), gently remove the old and built-up wax and add a fresh coat. Be sure to get all of the old wax though so that your new layer of wax adheres properly. 

Wax It On, Wax It Off

To sum up the answer to ‘How often do you wax a surfboard?’, you wax it as much as you feel it needs to be. Whether that’s before every surf session, every other session, or seasonally, it’s totally up to you. Just be sure to give that board of yours a fresh de-waxing once in a while in order to prevent buildup and to ensure your new layer of wax will stick! 

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Lauren Collison

Contributor at Wetsuit Wearhouse
Lauren (LoLo) has been turning words into blog posts for Wetsuit Wearhouse since 2014. She learned to surf for the first time ever in Costa Rica but she gravitates more towards SUP. When she's not scouring the web for travel deals, you can find her either hiking, running, gardening, tending to her animals, or reading a good book outside on a beautiful day.
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