As a snowboarder, the arrival of a new board is always exciting. But before hitting the slopes with your brand-new gear, it’s important to consider whether you should wax it first. Some believe that since new boards come pre-waxed from the factory, there’s no need to wax them again. Others argue that a fresh coat of wax can significantly improve performance and protect the base.
So, which is it? Should you wax a new snowboard or not? The answer isn’t black and white, as there are pros and cons to both options. It all boils down to personal preference, budget, experience level, and how often you plan on using the board.
“Waxing a new snowboard may seem like a daunting task, but the benefits can be worth it.”
In this article, we’ll explore the potential advantages and drawbacks of waxing a new snowboard. We’ll also discuss what type of wax to use and how to apply it properly, so you can make an informed decision about whether or not to wax your new ride.
If you’ve just invested in a new snowboard, read on to discover everything you need to know before hitting the mountain.
What Happens If You Don’t Wax A New Snowboard?
Decreased Performance on the Mountain
A new snowboard comes with a factory wax, but it is not enough to provide optimal performance in different conditions. Therefore, you need to wax your snowboard before heading to the mountains for an enhanced riding experience.
If you do not wax your new snowboard, you will experience decreased performance on the mountain. Your ride will be slow and sluggish because friction between the board and the snow builds up without proper lubrication from wax. The lack of speed also affects your maneuverability, making turning difficult and less responsive. Thus, without proper maintenance, not only are you sacrificing fun, but missing out on the full potential of your gear.
Increased Risk of Damage to the Board
Riding a new snowboard without adding fresh wax can lead to damage to both the base and edges. Unwaxed boards become dry and porous, making them susceptible to scratches and nicks. Over time, this may weaken the structural integrity of the board and negatively impact its overall longevity.
Varying temperatures and wetness can cause rust and corrosion to accumulate on unprotected metal parts, such as the steel edges. Rusty or corroded edges result in slick spots that reduce control, exposure materials beneath the surface, and more importantly dangerous game-changing slip-ups during slides and turns.
Shortened Lifespan of the Snowboard
A brand-new snowboard has a lifespan of 150-200 days if well taken care of. This includes waxing it every few runs to maintain its condition over time. However, neglecting valuable routine services like waxing could greatly decrease your board’s lifespan despite taking great caution while using it. Without regular waxing and tuning, the base can become brittle and break down faster than expected. The higher maintenance costs due to frequent repair and replacement will be a major setback in snowboarding.
“Waxing is crucial for keeping your board’s base in good shape. If neglected, you’ll end up with a dry base that will increase drag on any type of terrain, decreasing speed and overall performance.” – Raul Pinto, Head Snowboard Coach at Lake Tahoe Community College
It’s clear that waxing a new snowboard is not negotiable if you want to ensure maximum performance and extend its lifespan. Regular tune-ups, including base cleaning, edge sharpening, and applying fresh hot wax as required, are necessary components of proper maintenance. Most importantly, make sure that you are equipped with high-quality waxing products and tools or reach out to professional tuning shops for advice before hitting the slopes.
When Is The Best Time To Wax A New Snowboard?
A new snowboard is a prized possession for any rider. It requires proper care and frequent maintenance to ensure its longevity and peak performance on the mountain.
Before the First Ride of the Season
The best time to wax your new snowboard is before its first ride out on the slopes. This will help protect the base of your board from damage caused by rough and uneven terrain found on most mountains. Applying a layer of wax also helps create a smoother surface which results in better speed and maneuverability when riding down the hill.
Applying wax also helps seal any pores or small scratches present on the base, thereby reducing friction between the board and the snow. By doing so, you prevent moisture from seeping through and damaging the interior core of the snowboard.
“Waxing a brand new snowboard creates a protective barrier between the board’s base and abrasive snow conditions” – evo.com
When the Base Appears Dry or Dull
After the initial wax application, you can determine if your board needs more wax by checking the appearance of the base. When it appears dry or dull, it means that it has absorbed moisture, making it less glide-friendly than before. In this case, it’s advisable to add another layer of wax to refresh the protective layer, maintain performance, and extend the life of the board.
Also consider the temperature outside when deciding whether or not to re-wax. If it’s colder or warmer than usual, the existing wax may not be suitable, affecting the performance of the board on certain types of snow. Reapplying a coat of wax specifically designed for cold or warm temperatures ensures optimum functionality regardless of the weather conditions.
“Wax serves as a lubricant between your base and the snow. When the temperature or texture of the snow changes, you should have the appropriate type of wax on your board.” – Rei.com
After Extensive Use on the Mountain
Continuous usage on the mountain causes friction wear and tear to accumulate over time. A lot of debris such as dirt, rocks, branches, and other objects can easily damage the exterior parts of your equipment, including the board’s plastic sidewalls. Continuously exposing it to these elements without proper maintenance and repair shortens the lifespan of your equipment in general.
You can determine if your board is nearing the end of its wax life by taking notice of how much dribble comes out under normal use. If you’re not getting enough, then it’s probably due for another wax job.
“Extensive use changes everything with your board. You will feel the cohesion of the base and the snow change over time. Be sure to pay attention to this and adjust accordingly” -momentumski.com
Regular waxing plays an indispensable role in maintaining both condition and performance levels of your newly owned snowboard. Waxing before riding for the first time, re-applying when the base appears to be dry or dull, and after significant use are vital to ensuring top-level performance and extending overall longevity while protecting against moisture damage caused by rough terrain.
How Often Should You Wax Your Snowboard?
After Every 3-4 Days of Riding
If you are an avid snowboarder, then it is essential to maintain your board periodically. One way to keep it in good condition is to wax it regularly. Generally, experts recommend that you wax your snowboard after every three or four days of riding. However, this estimation may vary depending on the temperature and weather conditions that you encounter.
The reason for such a frequency is that during riding, the heat generated by friction can cause the base material of your board to dry out, causing damage and affecting its performance. Hence, frequent waxing provides hydration and protection from abrasion, prolonging the life of your gear. Moreover, regular maintenance ensures better speed control, smoother movements, and ease of turning.
“Waxing should be thought of as routine maintenance rather than an occasional treat,” says Kristin Butler, Director of Online Content at Ski Magazine.
When the Base Appears Dry or Dull
Another sign that your snowboard requires waxing is when its surface begins to appear dry and dull. This occurs due to prolonged exposure to harsh elements like ice, dirt, and rocks, which can scrape off the protective layer of wax and cause wear and tear to the base. Therefore, it’s crucial to pay attention to the appearance of your board and act accordingly.
Additionally, if you are going for a long trip or weekend getaway where you’ll be exposed to different terrains and climates, waxing before such expeditions could increase your comfort and performance. A well-cared-for board creates a better grip, reduces unwanted skidding, and ultimately saves energy and injuries.
“Many factors expire base materials over time, with UV rays being one of the most significant. Sun-damage affects anything plastic, and bases are no exception,” says Rob LaPlante, Director of Marketing, Sales & Distribution at Hertel Wax.
Snowboarding is an incredible winter sport that requires adequate care and maintenance to keep your gear in top condition. By waxing frequently, you improve the longevity of your snowboard’s performance and save costs on future repairs or replacements. Not only this, but a waxed board also offers better speed control, improved turning, and smoother glides over different terrains. Therefore, if you want to maximize your fun and safety, don’t hesitate to give your board regular waxing when necessary!
What Type Of Wax Should You Use On A New Snowboard?
Fluorinated Wax for High Performance Snowboarding
If you are looking to achieve maximum speed and performance on your new snowboard, then fluorinated wax is the way to go. This type of wax contains a chemical compound called fluorocarbon, which reduces friction between your snowboard and the snow. The result is increased speed and improved control as your board glides more smoothly over the snow.
Fluorinated wax comes at a higher price point than other types of wax. It also requires careful application, and should only be used by experienced riders or taken to a professional tuning shop.
“Using fluorinated wax on your snowboard can make a noticeable difference in your performance on the mountain.” -Transworld Snowboarding
All-Temperature Wax for Versatility
If you want one type of wax that can work well in all conditions, then all-temperature wax may be right for you. As the name suggests, this type of wax can function effectively in both warm and cold temperatures. All-temperature wax is also generally considered easier to apply than fluorinated wax, making it a good choice for beginners or those who prefer to tune their own boards.
While all-temperature wax may not offer the highest level of performance compared to specialized waxes, it is a versatile option that will get the job done in most situations. Its affordability and ease of use also make it an attractive option for many riders.
“All-temp wax is great for recreational snowboarders who don’t need to obsess over every last detail of their equipment.” -REI Co-op Journal
Natural Wax for Eco-Friendly Snowboarding
If you are concerned about the environmental impact of your snowboarding gear, then natural wax may be the best choice for you. Unlike fluorinated and all-temperature waxes, which contain synthetic chemicals, natural wax is made from organic materials such as plant or animal oils.
Natural wax is not only better for the environment, but it can also offer a high level of performance on the mountain. While it may require more frequent application than other types of wax, many riders prefer the peace of mind that comes with using an eco-friendly product.
“Choosing natural wax is a small yet important step towards reducing our impact on the environment while still enjoying the sport we love.” -Snowboarder Magazine
Choosing the right type of wax for your new snowboard depends on your individual needs, priorities, and preferences. If you are looking to maximize your performance on the mountain, consider investing in fluorinated wax. For versatility and affordability, all-temperature wax is a solid option. And if you want to reduce your environmental impact, natural wax is the way to go. Whatever type of wax you choose, proper application and maintenance will keep your board performing its best all season long.
Can You Wax Your Snowboard Yourself or Should You Leave It To The Professionals?
DIY Waxing for Basic Maintenance
If you have a new snowboard, the manufacturer may advise that it does not need waxing. However, whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or professional snowboarder, eventually your board will require some maintenance. The most basic level of waxing entails using an iron to melt synthetic wax onto the base and then scraping away any excess.
This task is relatively easy to complete yourself with a DIY kit. Such kits usually include edge tuning tools, P-tex sticks (for filling scratches), and a scraper. When waxing by yourself, remember to follow instructions carefully to avoid damaging your board. Avoid overheating the wax or leaving the iron in one place for too long to minimize potential damage.
- Wax after Every Few Uses: Regular waxing can help improve the speed and control on the slopes. Experts recommend doing this every few uses or when you notice the bottom of your board becoming dull or slow. How often you should apply wax depends on the specific conditions – such as ice or dirt – which you encounter while snowboarding.
- Clean Thoroughly First: Before applying the wax to your board, ensure that the surface is clean and dry. Wipe off all dust and debris using a base cleaner or rubbing alcohol. Dry your board properly before proceeding to the waxing.
Professional Waxing for Optimal Performance
If you don’t feel confident enough to do the maintenance work yourself, you might want to consider taking it to a specialist who offers waxing services. Professional shops like REI co-op offer high-quality servicing, including repairs, edge sharpening, and a high-performance wax job.
Professional snowboarders often opt for this level of service since it can provide them with the best board setup possible. They will use modern technology and advanced waxing techniques on your board to make sure it performs optimally in all environments, regardless of how difficult they may be. Additionally, professional shop technicians have more experience when working on boards, which means you are less likely to end up with any damages.
“The majority of riders will benefit from a fresh wax or service prior to hitting the slopes.” – The Snow Pros organization
If you’re new to Winter sports or do not frequently participate in them, then waxing yourself might suffice. On the other hand, if you’re an experienced rider competing in races and competitions regularly, investing in a professional wax is highly recommended.
Whether to wax your snowboard yourself or take it to a specialist depends primarily on your skill level as well as what activities you intend to perform during work hours. While DIY Kits undoubtedly allow you to save on money and time, using expert services seems like a safe bet if you want the best performance out of your equipment in demanding environments.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it necessary to wax a new snowboard?
Yes, it is necessary to wax a new snowboard. The factory wax is often minimal and wears off quickly, leaving the base dry and prone to damage. Waxing a new snowboard helps to protect the base from scratches, dings, and dents. Additionally, waxing the board helps to improve its performance, making it faster and smoother to ride.
Does waxing a new snowboard affect its performance?
Waxing a new snowboard can greatly affect its performance. A properly waxed board will glide more smoothly and quickly over the snow, making it easier to turn and control. Waxing also helps to protect the base from damage, which can affect the board’s overall performance over time. A new snowboard with a properly waxed base will likely perform better and last longer than one that is not waxed.
What are the benefits of waxing a new snowboard?
Waxing a new snowboard has several benefits. First, it helps to protect the base from damage caused by rocks, stumps, and other obstacles on the mountain. Second, a properly waxed board will glide more smoothly and quickly over the snow, making it easier to turn and control. Finally, waxing helps to prolong the life of the board by preventing the base from drying out and cracking.
When should you wax a new snowboard?
You should wax a new snowboard before its first use and after every few days of riding. Waxing before the first use helps to protect the base from damage and ensures a smooth ride. After a few days of riding, the board’s base may become dry and damaged, making it necessary to wax again. Additionally, you should wax the board whenever you notice that it is not gliding smoothly over the snow.
How often should you wax a new snowboard?
You should wax a new snowboard every few days of riding or whenever you notice that it is not gliding smoothly over the snow. The exact frequency of waxing will depend on your riding style, the conditions of the mountain, and the type of wax you use. However, as a general rule, it is better to wax too often than not enough, as waxing helps to protect the base from damage and improve the board’s overall performance.