SOCCER Cleats Care
Soccer cleats are an integral part of your soccer experience, so you want to be sure you give them the care they deserve. After all, a well-maintained pair can be your ultimate tool on the pitch. With that in mind, here are some tips that will help you get the most out of your soccer cleats.
Cleaning the Soles of the Cleats
After practice or playing in your soccer cleats, you’ll get mud or dirt on your cleats. Be sure to take the proper maintenance steps immediately after use.
Knock off excess dirt
Hit the cleats against each other, sole facing sole, to remove as much excess dirt, grass, and mud, as possible.
Dry clean excess dirt from the soles
Use a soft-bristled brush or a cleat specific cleaning tool to scrub the bottoms of the cleats. This will loosen any dry clumps of built up grass and mud on the sole and between the spikes.
- When cleaning the sides of the sole that are close to the upper of the shoe, consider switching brushes, and using a toothbrush. A toothbrush will still have abrasive bristles to loosen dirt, but it will be more controllable and easy to focus in on the area you’re scrubbing.
- Be careful not to use a stick to remove grass and dirt from the soles of your cleats. A stick could scratch the soles and damage your shoes.
Mix your cleaning solution
The cleaning solution should consist of warm water and a small amount of cleaning solution. Cleaning solutions like dish soap or hand soap work really well. Fill up a container with about two cups of warm water and add about a tablespoon of soap. Mix the water and soap around with the toothbrush until the mixture starts to become sudsy.
- You don’t want to add a lot of soap to the cleaning solution, especially if you are planning on cleaning leather cleats. A small amount of soap will suffice.
Clean the soles with the soapy solution
Now that you’ve mixed your soapy solution, dip the soft-bristled brush you used earlier to dry clean the soles in the soapy solution and scrub the soles of the shoes. When the brush becomes filled with dirt and grass, run it under a stream of clean water from a sink, dip it into the soapy solution again, and continue scrubbing.
- Again, you can use a smaller toothbrush to wet clean the cleats when you move to the upper sides of the shoe, near the top portion of the shoe. The toothbrush will allow you to continue cleaning the sides of the soles, with the precision of a smaller scrub brush.
Wipe the soles clean
Dip a paper towel into the soapy solution and wipe the soles of the shoes to remove any last bits of dirt and grass. The paper towel will gather any remaining debris, and allow you to use your fingers with the paper towel, and reach the areas in between the spikes.
Cleaning the Upper Portion of the Cleats
Remove and clean the laces
Unlace the laces from the cleats, and dip them in the soapy solution. Let the laces sit for approximately 10 minutes, then use your fingers and toothbrush to gently scrub the laces and remove dirt build up.
- After scrubbing the laces, run them under clean water, and lay them out on a towel, on a flat surface, to dry.
- You could even lay the laces out in sunlight, but keep in mind that sunlight could possible fade the coloring of the laces.
Clean the tops of the cleats with a toothbrush
Dip your soft-bristled scrub brush or toothbrush in the soapy water, and scrub the tops of the cleats. Start scrubbing at the middle area of the cleats, near the laces, and work your way down to the sides of the shoe. This will allow the watery dirt to naturally fall downward to the sides of the cleats.
- Don’t forget to scrub the tongue of the cleat as well. With the laces removed, you can scrub all areas of the cleat’s tongue.
- It may be helpful to insert one hand into the cleat while the other hand scrubs the sides of the cleat.
- An alternative and equally effective cleaning method for cleaning the upper portions of cleats, is using a cleaning eraser sponge.
Clean the tops of the cleats with a cleaning eraser sponge
Dip a cleaning eraser sponge into the soapy solution. Wring it out with your hands until most of the water is gone from the eraser. Hold onto the shoe and use the eraser to rub areas of the top portion of the cleat.
- Be sure to rub the tongue area of the shoe as well, now that it’s more accessible with the laces removed.
Dry off the cleats
Use a paper towel, or clean, dry rag to dry off the cleats and collect any dirty, soapy water that may be remaining. Dry all parts of the cleats: the tongue, the sides, and the soles.
- Consider stuffing the inside of the cleats with newspaper to absorb any water that may have made it’s way inside the cleat.
Replace the cleats
Once your laces and cleats are completely dry, relace the cleats loosely, put on the cleats, and then make lacing adjustments to make the lacing tighter or looser.