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Pool Table Care: Protect Your Investment

Pool Table Care: Protect Your Investment

Pool Table Care: Tips for Making Sure Your Pool Table Stays in Good Shape and Lasts Longer

So you finally decided to buy a quality pool table. How do you make sure you protect this investment?

Much of this article with tips for pool table care comes from www.BillardsDigest.com.

A good pool table isn’t cheap. And after going without your daily Starbucks for a year, you finally saved up enough money to buy one. To make sure your investment outlasts your desire to go caffeine-free, you just need a few tips on how to take care of a pool table.

First, you must remember your pool table is actually a quality piece of furniture. As such, you need to make sure and treat it like one. Even though you will be playing on it, you should keep everything else off of it besides the game. In other words, no drinks on the side, no sitting on it, and no kicking it when you scratch on the 8-ball.

Billards Digest asked some of the billiard industry’s leading manufacturers, distributors and service providers to spill some pool table maintenance tips you can follow — and a few common-sense warnings you can observe — that will allow you to both enjoy your table and pass it on to future generations.

Beware chalk — the silent killer

“The chalk is abrasive; it gets into the cloth and destroys the cloth,” says Dwight Porter, table designer and manager of the high-end Renaissance line for AMF Billiards & Games, based in Bland, Mo.

Keeping the table brushed will help but even then – about half of the chalk is actually just ground in to the table’s felt cloth. Over time, this can severely degrade the integrity of your pool table’s surface. Then, it not only starts to look bad, put play bad as well. As such, many experts recommend lightly vacuuming the surface to get the chalk off instead of brushing.

Don’t take the heat…

…Near your pool table that is. Think about it… what happens to a person’s skin over time when you are out in the sun? Yes, you get burnt! And what happens to fabric on clothing you repeatedly wear out in sunny weather? IT FADES! Neither are things you want to happen to your pool table. Therefore, make sure your table does not spend its day in direct sunlight, near a fireplace, etc.

“You’d be surprised how many people put them in a room with a big window, and after a year half of it is faded,” says Andee Atkisson, table designer for Vitalie Manufacturing, based in Rosman, N.C. He adds, “You need humidity conducive to fine furniture.” Therefore, he prescribes humidity levels of 40 percent to 60 percent as the best possible environment for fine wood.

Use Humpty-Dumpty As A Warning

Humpty Dumpty was the one hurt by sitting on the wall when he fell off. In this case, your pool table will suffer more if people use it as a jungle gym.

First, there is a chance the rails will pop off. Then, if you do not have “floor to ceiling pool table legs”&#8212the tall kind that extend all the way up to the pocket and are attached to the main frame—you run the risk of them getting wobbly over time. Ever try to play a game of pool on a shaky table? Yeah… not fun.

Moisture is NOT your friend.

Nothing will kill a pool table leg like urine so make sure to always supervise pets near the table. And then make sure no one ever sets a drink of any kind on the rails or the felt. It’s bad enough in that it will likely create a ring, but if it spills… Well, that can be costly to fix.

Keep your balls clean…

OK…stop laughing. But seriously. Keep them clean. As Mason King of Billards Digest says, “You can mop your kitchen floor for hours, but all it takes is one filthy pair of sneakers to track in more dirt. On the felt, your game balls — and especially the cue ball — pick up dust and chalk and then reapply them to the table and rails.” Therefore, it is very important to just lightly wipe them with a microfiber cloth periodically. Don’t use waxy cleaners because they can leave a film.

Consider a yearly checkup…

Just like you get periodic physicals to help prevent something major from sneaking up on you, experts recommend you get your pool table inspected on a regular basis as well. Some suggest you should get this pool table inspection done every year.

According to Billards Digest, here are some of the things you should check and/or get done:

  • Check to see if the pool table is level
  • Are the rubber cushions still attached tightly to the rails? (The rubber itself should last for decades.)
  • Are there any obvious signs of wear on the cloth, and is it still tight? (Here’s a way to check cloth tautness for yourself: You should be able to place your open palm on the cloth and put your weight on it without moving the fabric.)
  • Has the table slate shifted, or have seams opened up between the pieces of slate?
  • Are the rail bolts still tight?
  • Is the cabinet still sound and tight?
  • Are there any surface cracks?

They also say to make sure and get a pool table inspected at the very least, when you get your pool table felt changed—something that should also be done periodically.

At Professional Billiards of Atlanta, we do free pool table inspections with any of our other services and we also fix many of the problems we might find.

With just a little care, your pool table can last for a very long time. And we can help make sure that happens. Give your pool table care. But if you have neglected it a bit, call us now. We will be glad to help you get back on the right track!