Pool table bumpers are often neglected when it comes to general maintenance. The average pool table owner won’t even realize the amount of wear and tear this part of the table can go through. It’s important to take action and ensure the damage does not spiral out of control. With that in mind, it’s time to look at how to soften pool table bumpers the right way. It’s the simple changes that will make all the difference in the world. Here is a breakdown of some of the most important tips to keep in mind and why it’s important to soften pool table bumpers in the first place. Note that these tips work on either slate or non-slate pool tables (see our picks for some of the best non-slate pool tables currently available) equally well.
Related: What is the Difference Between Pool, Billiards, and Snooker?
Reasons To Soften Pool Table Bumpers
Before looking at the tips, let’s start with the basics, including why softening the pool table bumpers is critical.
The benefits include:
* Improved Performance
* Less Breakage
* Consistent Speed
* Improved Rebounds
It is these reasons that matter the most when you are trying to keep the pool table in optimal condition. A lot of people don’t do that and it leads to subpar results.
Softening the Bumpers
Keep The Room Cool
You will want to take the time to keep the room as cool as possible. This is a common mistake people make because they don’t regulate the temperature in the room. This does not mean it should be too cold, but it’s important to reduce the heat in the room. If you are going to turn on the heat, keep it minimal where the pool table is.
The humidity in the room has to be stable. You can use a dehumidifier for this purpose if that is the only option available to you. If it is not set at room temperature, the pool table is going to give out. This is not just about the bumpers but the rest of the table too. Be careful when it comes to the amount of humidity in the room.
Related: Slate vs Non-Slate Pool Tables
Insulation is a good idea depending on how the room is set up. You have to prep the room, which means insulation around the walls. If the room is not insulated, this can create a situation where it is too cold for the pool table bumpers and this can deaden their impact. You will notice this when you walk into the pool table room. If it’s too cold then you have to make changes or the pool table bumpers will never work as planned.
Keep The Table Clean
The bumpers are going to have to be cleaned and that is not just simple wiping. You have to take the time to use a handheld vacuum on the bumpers and surrounding surfaces. A lot of dust can accumulate on the bumpers, which is why they lose their bounce. The dust deadens their efficiency, which is the last thing you will want as a player. You want to ensure the bumpers work well and that is why keeping the pool table clean is a must. Additionally, replacing the pool table felt occasionally can also ensure that the ball is getting the best bounce possible.
Use A Pool Table Cover
How are you storing the pool table when it is not in use? Just leaving it out in the open is dangerous and not something you should be doing. The reason it’s dangerous has to do with moisture seeping into the bumpers and causing them to lose their efficiency. In situations such as this, your pool table doesn’t perform well, leading to major financial repairs or replacements, especially if it is a slate table (see How to Tell if Your Pool Table is Made of Slate). Keep things simple and use a pool table cover when you are not playing. It’s simple, efficient, and will work well for all types of pool tables.
If you are thinking about softening a pool table bumper, it’s important to understand what works and what does not. The tips mentioned here are going to set you on the right path and will yield the type of results you’re after. The pool table will start performing better, which is what makes a real difference. If you are frustrated with how the pool table is performing look into this part of pool table maintenance. You will notice the change in performance instantly.