How to Clean Golf Balls at Home

Playing golf means you’ll inevitably end up with dirty golf balls, which can affect their performance and longevity. Cleaning your golf balls at home is an easy task that requires minimal supplies and time. By following these simple steps, you can keep your golf balls in pristine condition and improve your game.

Materials Needed:

  1. Bucket or large bowl
  2. Warm water
  3. Dish soap or mild detergent
  4. Soft-bristle brush or toothbrush
  5. Soft cloth or towel
  6. White vinegar (optional)
  7. Baking soda (optional)

Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. Gather your materials: Before you begin cleaning your golf balls, make sure you have all the necessary supplies handy.
  2. Fill the bucket or bowl with warm water: Pour warm water into a large bucket or bowl, ensuring there’s enough water to fully submerge the golf balls.
  3. Add dish soap or mild detergent: Add a few drops of dish soap or a mild detergent to the water, and gently mix until you see suds forming. This will help break down dirt and grime on the golf balls.
  4. Soak the golf balls: Place the dirty golf balls into the soapy water, ensuring they are fully submerged. Allow them to soak for about 10-15 minutes. This will help loosen any stubborn dirt or grime.
  5. Scrub the golf balls: After soaking, use a soft-bristle brush or toothbrush to gently scrub the golf balls. Pay special attention to the dimples and any engraved markings, as dirt tends to accumulate in these areas.
  6. Rinse with clean water: Once you’ve scrubbed the golf balls, rinse them thoroughly with clean water to remove any soap residue.
  7. Dry the golf balls: Use a soft cloth or towel to gently pat the golf balls dry, making sure to remove any excess water.
  8. (Optional) Remove stains with vinegar and baking soda: If your golf balls have stubborn stains or discoloration, create a paste using equal parts white vinegar and baking soda. Apply the paste to the affected areas and gently scrub with the soft-bristle brush or toothbrush. Rinse with clean water and dry as described in steps 6 and 7.


Methods of Cleaning Golf Balls at Home

MethodMaterials NeededTime RequiredEffectivenessProsCons
Soapy WaterMild soap, water5-10 minutesHighSimple, effectiveMay not remove stains
DishwasherDishwasher, detergent20-30 minutesHighTime-efficientMay damage dishwasher
Ultrasonic CleanerUltrasonic cleaner, water, mild detergent10-15 minutesHighThorough, efficientExpensive equipment
Baking Soda PasteBaking soda, water10-15 minutesMediumEco-friendlyRequires scrubbing
Bleach SolutionBleach, water10-15 minutesHighRemoves stainsHarsh on golf balls

Soapy Water Cleaning Process

StepDescriptionDurationTipsSafety Precautions
1. FillFill a bucket with warm soapy water1 minuteUse mild soap to prevent damage
2. SoakPlace golf balls in the water5 minutesEnsure all balls are submerged
3. ScrubUse a soft brush to clean3 minutesFocus on dirt and stainsAvoid splashing
4. RinseRinse golf balls with water1 minuteUse a hose or sink for easy rinsing
5. DryDry golf balls with a towel1 minutePat dry to prevent scratching

Dishwasher Cleaning Process

StepDescriptionDurationTipsSafety Precautions
1. LoadLoad golf balls into dishwasher2 minutesUse a mesh bag or dishwasher-safe tray
2. Add DetergentAdd dishwasher detergent1 minuteUse regular detergentAvoid overfilling
3. SetSet dishwasher to a gentle cycle1 minuteChoose a cycle without heated dry
4. RunRun the dishwasher20-30 minutesEnsure dishwasher is closed properlyKeep away from heat
5. UnloadUnload and dry golf balls2 minutesCheck for any remaining dirt or stains

Baking Soda Paste Cleaning Process

StepDescriptionDurationTipsSafety Precautions
1. MixMix baking soda and water1 minuteCreate a thick paste
2. ApplyApply paste to golf balls2 minutesUse a toothbrush or soft clothAvoid skin contact
3. ScrubGently scrub the golf balls5 minutesFocus on dirt and stains
4. RinseRinse golf balls with water1 minuteUse a hose or sink for easy rinsing
5. DryDry golf balls with a towel1 minutePat

Bleach Solution Cleaning Process

StepDescriptionDurationTipsSafety Precautions
1. MixMix bleach and water (1:10 ratio)1 minuteUse a well-ventilated areaWear gloves, avoid skin contact
2. SoakPlace golf balls in the solution5 minutesEnsure all balls are submergedKeep away from children/pets
3. ScrubUse a soft brush to clean3 minutesFocus on dirt and stainsAvoid splashing, wear eye protection
4. RinseRinse golf balls with water1 minuteUse a hose or sink for easy rinsing
5. DryDry golf balls with a towel1 minutePat dry to prevent scratching

Household Items for Cleaning Golf Balls

ItemUsageEffectivenessTipsSafety Precautions
ToothbrushScrubbing golf balls with cleaning solutionHighUse soft bristlesClean after use
ToothpasteAbrasive cleaner for tough stainsMediumApply a small amount to toothbrushAvoid skin contact
VinegarDiluted in water as a cleaning solutionMediumMix 1 part vinegar to 10 parts waterAvoid eye contact
Magic EraserRemoving stubborn stainsHighWet the eraser before usingAvoid skin contact
Denture TabletsDissolving dirt in waterMediumPlace 2-3 tablets in water with golf ballsKeep away from children

Maintenance Tips for Golf Balls

Regular cleaningClean golf balls after each roundRegularlyConsistent performance, longevityTime-consuming
Inspect for damageCheck for cuts, cracks, or other imperfectionsRegularlyEarly detection of unusable ballsNone
Rotate golf ballsUse different balls for practice and gamesRegularlyEven wear, longer lifespanNone
Proper storageStore in a cool, dry place away from sunlightAlwaysPrevents damage from heat and moistureNone
Replace when necessaryDiscard damaged or heavily worn golf ballsAs neededEnsures optimal performanceCost

Factors to Consider When Cleaning Golf Balls

MaterialType of golf ball (urethane, surlyn, ionomer, etc.)HighChoose a cleaning method suitable for the ball’s material
Dirt and StainsAmount of dirt, grass, and other stainsHighUse more aggressive cleaning methods for stubborn stains
Time and EffortAmount of time and effort available for cleaningMediumChoose a cleaning method based on available time and effort
Environmental ImpactEnvironmental friendliness of the cleaning methodMediumOpt for eco-friendly cleaning methods when possible
CostExpense of cleaning materials and equipmentMedium


Cleaning your golf balls at home is a simple and cost-effective way to maintain their performance and appearance. Regular cleaning can help prolong the life of your golf balls and ensure consistent results on the course. By following these easy steps, you’ll have clean and ready-to-use golf balls for your next round.


  • Ray Barnes

    Ray Barnes, our Senior Staff Writer and a Golf Analyst with a PhD in Sports Analytics, is a beacon of insight in the golfing world. With a deep understanding of the sport's nuances, statistical analysis, and a talent for demystifying complexities, he provides in-depth analysis and captivating narratives that engage golf enthusiasts worldwide.

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