Surfboards can be costly, but like every high-value item, they can last for years if the proper care is taken. Storing your surfboard properly at home means it will also perform better.
To store your surfboard safely, keep it away from the sun: whether you're keeping your board inside or out, finding a place out of the sun is the key to maintaining its condition. The UV rays will cause your board to yellow, turning its brilliant white colour into an aged creamy-yellow shade.
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Boards that have been exposed to the sun become weaker and deteriorate more quickly, even before they go yellow. Continued exposure will expand the foam, burning away some of the protection that the fibreglass layers and epoxy provide. This will leave your surfboard more prone to dings and dents, and cause an overall weaker structure.
If you keep your surfboard outside, choose an area that's entirely shaded throughout the day. If it’s indoors, don't leave it near big windows.
Cleaning your board
For both short and long-term storage, always clean your surfboard with fresh water after use.
Salt can corrode your board and even though it's made for use in the sea, this doesn't mean it's good for it. If you don't clean it, the salt will gradually eat away at the surface, the traction pad and the leash rope.
Once you've rinsed your board with fresh water, let it dry. This is especially important for longer term storage.
Removing the wax and fins
If you're not planning to use your board any time soon, remove the wax. Let the wax warm by leaving your board outside on a hot day for a few minutes. When it has softened enough to be stripped away, use something thin, such as an old bank card, and peel the wax right off.
Remove the fins too. Salt, sand and water can get trapped in the fin box, so always wash these areas well after removing them.
Never keep your surfboard in your vehicle
It's a bad idea to leave your board in the car, even for a day and especially in the warmer summer months. Intense heat can build up, and it can get to well over 100 degrees. This can be so detrimental to your board that it can destroy it permanently! An otherwise perfect surfboard can be ruined in a few hours if it's left in such intense heat.
It's not ideal to store a board outside, but even this is better than leaving it in the car. Sometimes, especially with longboards and stand-up paddleboards, it can be difficult to keep them in the house.
For outside storage, you need a surfboard bag, created specifically for the protection of your board when not in use. Minimising any exposure to the elements is a sensible step. If you can store it in a shed, or under an awning, this can help prevent sun damage.
If you prop your surfboard up, protect the tail. You shouldn't let your board touch the hard surface of the ground. Always rest the tail on something soft, such as a foam brick or a folded towel.
Indoor surfboard storage
Storing your surfboard indoors is the best option if you have enough room. Surfboard racks are a good choice, as they enable the board to rest safely on a soft surface, so none of it touches the wall or the floor.
A stand-up rack is a great option for storing shortboards. They usually don't need drilling into the wall and have slots to slide your board into, so the tail rests on the soft base. They look pretty good too and are also easy to move around.
If you're short of floor space, try wall-mounted racks - the nose and tail of the board can lie horizontally. This distributes the board’s weight evenly on two arms extending from the wall. Some can also hold longboards.
Surfboard slings are another storage option when you need to conserve floor space. They consist of two sections of rope mounted onto the ceiling, one for the nose and the other for the tail. Slide the board in evenly from above.
A surfboard sock is a cloth cover designed for specific sizes of surfboards. It slides around the exterior of the board and fins. Although they are not as thick and heavy as a board bag, they provide an affordable means of adding another layer of protection.
Proper surfboard storage isn't difficult. Surfboards aren't cheap and they’re probably something that means a great deal to you, so don't risk damaging them, as it can be costly to get them fixed. It’s well worth the small effort it takes to store your prized possession properly.
If you need any further help or advice, please do not hesitate to contact the surfboard experts at Ocean Magic.