A Quick Guide On How To Clean Billiard Balls

After a period of use, the balls turn yellow. Replacing a new one is probably not an optimal solution because of its cost. Let’s learn how to clean billiard balls to keep them shiny as long as possible!

Home billiards players often just wipe them with a dry towel with glass cleaner water but absolutely, it is not the right way. Glass cleaner water doesn’t work for stubborn stains. 

Why Do Pool Balls Turn Yellow?

Today, billiard balls are made from any material such as phenolic synthetic leather, plastics, polyester, and acrylic. Sunlight and moisture will gradually break down the structure of the materials, causing oxidation and making the plastic turn yellow. You can see this natural phenomenon clearly on the white ones.

Cleaning Guide Step By Step

#Step 1: Using A Cloth To Wipe 

After gathering all the balls you need to clean, use a damp cloth and gently wipe their entire surface to remove oil and dirt. The color printed on them is quite durable, so you may consider using 70 degree alcohol instead of water.

Using A Cloth To Wipe The Ball

#Step 2: Soaking The Ball With Detergent

Mix the cleaning solution and water in a 1:2 ratio, meaning for every cup of detergent, mix two cups of warm water.

Depending on the number of balls, adjust the amount of solution accordingly. Make sure 1/2 of the surface of the ball is soaked in it.

Drop them into the bucket and wait for about 30 minutes. You should sometimes turn them to ensure that their entire surface is exposed to the detergent. 

After about 15 minutes, you will see the detergent turn yellow.

The detergent which we are mentioning, is professional billiard ball cleaner. Don’t make use of shower gel or dish soap because they can’t get the highest efficiency.

# Step 3: Removing Stains With A Sponge

Removing Stains With A Sponge

Using a sponge to rub the surface evenly, focusing on the spots where you see more dirt. Yellow stains will fade away without discoloring the billiard balls.

With white ones, you can scrub harder and not be afraid of them fading.

For stubborn stains, pour some baking powder over it and scrub it vigorously with the sponge. You can replace a new sponge if it has broken that reduces friction.

# Step 4: Cleaning Again With Water

Cleaning Again With Water

Rinse the balls with water two to three times to make sure all the detergent is removed. You can use a sponge to save more time.

Spread out a dry cotton towel on the table, leaving the cleaned ones on it. The towel will protect them from being scratched.

# Step 5: Dry

You shall absorb any excess water on the balls with a dry towel. Place them in a well-ventilated area and avoid direct sunlight. Remember to leave them on a flat surface and secure them if you don’t want them to get scratched by rolling, dropping or rubbing against other objects.

Storing In Cool Dry Place And Away From Directly Sunlight

# Step 6: Polishing

One of the steps to perfect this process is polishing. You can polish them by hand or machine. Here are steps to polish manually:

  • When they are completely dry, apply one or two drops of polish on their surface;
  • Using microfiber towel to rub;
  • Wait about three minutes for them to dry;
  • Using the dry cloth or paper towel to rub again with circular motions.

Using a billiard ball polisher, simply put them in the correct position and push the start button. Don’t forget to apply a few drops of polish on each ball. In our experience, setting 10 to 15 minutes is appropriate. Wait for it to finish and watch them glow under the light.

Products For Cleaning Pool Balls

Today, there are many different pool ball cleaning products on the market, including cleaners, polishes, microfibers, and a polish machine. The most famous are the products of the Aramith.

Cleaners or Polishes  are recommended after each game to remove chalks marks. Using the cleaner regularly will keep your balls polished and lustrous. 

Some people use paper towels to wipe the balls but pro players will recommend you to use microfiber towels which will save on the surface of balls and limit dust on them. You can choose microfiber towels from Aramith, Harilla, Gatorate or 3dRose. They cost from 5$ to 6 $. 

The polisher machine is a special assistant to keep the ball shiny and smooth. However, with the price between 150$ and 180$, it is not for everyone.


How Do You Clean Aramith Billiard Balls?

To clean Aramith billiard balls, the combo of Aramith Billiard Ball Cleaner, Aramith Billiard Ball Restorer, and Aramith Microfiber Cloth, which is specifically designed for them, is the go-to solution. 

  • Shake the bottle of Aramith Billiard Ball Restorer;
  • Apply a sufficient amount upon the ball;
  • Rub with the cloth;
  • Wait for it to dry and do it again with Aramith Billiard Ball Cleaner.

Can You Clean Pool Balls In The Dishwasher?

Many people think that cleaning billiard balls in the dishwasher is creative, but reality has proven that it is a mistake. Do not use the dishwasher to clean pool balls.

The heat of the dishwasher and the pressure of the water may cause the plastic to deform and discolor the numbers and letters printed on the ball.

How Often Should You Clean Pool Balls?

Cleaning the balls regularly is the way to maintain their longevity. After each game, you can wipe the balls with a damp cloth before storing them. A thorough six-step cleaning like the one above can happen once or twice a month.

How Do You Get Chalk Marks Off A Cue Ball?

There are often dark blue stains on the ball due to the chalk on the head of the cue. To remove it, take an old brush with some toothpaste and scrub the stain. Rinse with water and dry the ball with a towel.

Can I Use Car Wax On Pool Balls?

Yes, you can. Car wax works and has the same effect as professional polishing wax. It will help your balls shine and improve their glide capabilities. Make sure you choose good-quality car waxes.


Finally, you found the answer to how to clean billiard balls. Doing this correctly can help you extend the lifespan of them so that you won’t have to purchase a new set every now and then.

We’ve also listed what you can do or should avoid when cleaning balls. Once the balls are all clean, do not forget to store them carefully by placing them in a cool place and avoiding direct sunlight.

Follow our guide for the best results and share this useful information with those who love this sport.

Let the shiny balls make you proud!