Snowboarding is a sport and recreational activity that many people enjoy, and new people are starting to snowboard every day. However, should beginner snowboarders wax their snowboards?
When a beginner snowboarder gets a new board they should leave the factory wax on it. The wax it comes with should let it glide across the snow, but if it isn’t, then it is time to put new wax onto the board. Sometimes it is necessary to remove the factory wax before putting your own on.
To find out more about when you should wax your snowboard and what the best snowboard waxes are, keep reading.
When to Wax Your Snowboard
Ideally, you should wax your snowboard after 2-10 days of consistent use. How often you apply wax to your snowboard will vary depending on how often you use it and what conditions you are snowboarding in. As you go snowboarding, your snowboard loses wax. However, you typically only lose a small amount of wax every time you ride, so you don’t need to apply wax to your snowboard after every ride.
Before you apply wax to your new snowboard, take it out for a test run on the slopes. New snowboards have wax applied by the company on it, so it is ready to use. However, many snowboarders have found that the factory-applied wax doesn’t work extremely well, depending on the company.
If you take your new snowboard for a test run and find that it doesn’t move across the snow very well or seems to get stuck for no reason, it is likely because of the factory wax. Remove the factory wax and apply new wax before you go snowboarding again.
However, if you fall multiple times on your first snowboarding run, it likely isn’t because of the board. Snowboarding is difficult to get the hang of. (Source)
After you ride your snowboard for 2-3 days, you may notice that you can’t go as fast as you normally can. This is a sign that you need to apply new wax. However, most of the time you won’t have to apply new wax until about 10 days have passed. (Source)
If you aren’t sure if you need to wax your snowboard or not, run your fingernail across it. If your fingernail had snowboard wax on it after you run your fingernail across it, you don’t need to add wax. However, if your fingernail comes up clean, you likely need to add more wax.
There are two different types of snowboards, and that affects how often you will have to wax your snowboard. Snowboards with a sintered base will need more wax than snowboards that have an extruded base.
However, sintered snowboards are made of a more porous material than extruded snowboards, so they absorb more wax. This means that more wax will be on the snowboard and you can go faster than expected. However, sintered snowboards require more care than extruded snowboards.
You will need to wax your sintered snowboard every 2-3 days if you consistently use it. If you don’t add more wax, you will notice that your performance is hindered and you are going slower than normal. However, sometimes you can get away with not waxing your sintered snowboard for up to 10 days.
If you have an extruded snowboard, you will need to wax it every 2-10 days of consistent use. If you have an extruded snowboard, you likely won’t notice a dramatic decrease in your speed until the 10th day, so you don’t have to necessarily take care of the board as much as you would if you have a sintered snowboard.
Benefits of Waxing Your Snowboard
There are many benefits to waxing your snowboard, which is why it is a necessary task that many snowboarders don’t mind doing. First, wax protects a snowboard from being damaged by small rocks, sticks, and other debris that is poking out of the snow, too small or deep for you to see in time to avoid it. (Source)
Wax helps your snowboard go faster, which means you will have more fun while snowboarding and can potentially participate in races, depending on what you want to do with snowboarding at your level of expertise.
Wax also makes it easier for you to maneuver your snowboard, especially as you are avoiding trees and large rocks. However, as a beginner snowboarder, don’t necessarily worry about your speed until you have the basics perfected. (Source)
If you haven’t snowboarded in a while, partially because there hasn’t been any snow on the ground in the area where you go snowboarding, you may want to remove the wax that has been sitting on your snowboard for the past few months and apply new wax.
This is to make sure there isn’t any dust or debris on the wax that you can’t see or remove. Because of this, you may not want to apply new wax to your snowboard right before you go back home after going on a snowboarding trip.
How to Wax Your Snowboard
Now that you know how often you need to wax your snowboard, you are likely wondering how you add wax to your snowboard. Luckily for you, the process is included below for your convenience.
How to Wax a Snowboard
- Remove the bindings on your snowboard. The best type of wax to use on your snowboard is hot wax, and oftentimes bindings are screwed onto your snowboard. If those screws are heated up by the wax, they can damage your snowboard. Keep the screws and bindings in a place where you won’t lose any small parts.
- Clean off dirt and debris with a clean and damp cloth, rubbing alcohol, or snowboard base cleaner. Wax scrapers are included in snowboard wax kits. Remove the remaining wax on your board. Most people scrape off the wax. Make sure you scrape the wax off of the side as well as the base of the snowboard. Make sure there isn’t any remaining wax when you are done scraping your snowboard.
- Heat up your wax iron and get your wax ready. When the iron is warm, but not smoking, then hold the wax to the iron a few inches above your snowboard. Slowly move across your snowboard until your board has quite a bit of wax on it. Make sure you don’t burn your fingers or hands.
- Put the iron on the wax that you just put on your board.
- Move the iron to melt the wax so it can cover the entirety of your snowboard evenly. Make sure you also put wax on the sides of your snowboard. Moving your iron in a circular motion is best, as it will ensure the wax coating is even and that it reaches your entire snowboard.
- Let the wax dry for 20-30 minutes or until completely dry and cool to the touch.
- Scrape off excess wax and wax droplets with the scraper. However, make sure you don’t scrape off the wax you just put on that is on your board correctly.
If you use a rub-on wax rather than wax that you need to melt, all you need to do is rub it over the entirety of your snowboard until it is evenly coated after you have removed any leftover wax from your last wax application.
How and When to Remove Wax from Your Snowboard
You need to remove wax from your snowboard when you apply new wax to your snowboard. Old and new wax don’t often meld together well, and there may be dirt and debris stuck in the wax that you can’t see. It needs to be removed so your snowboard can work the best that it can. (Source)
If the base of your snowboard looks dirty, the kind of dirty that can’t just be brushed off, or the wax looks uneven, it needs to be removed and new wax needs to be applied. Also, when your board is slowing down faster than normal or doesn’t go as fast as it normally does, new wax needs to be applied to your snowboard. (Source)
- To remove wax from your snowboard, lay it on a flat surface. Make sure you are in an area where the floor can be covered in wax.
- Take out the scraper that came in your snowboard wax kit or that you purchased separately.
- Hold the scraper at a 45-degree angle and push it away from you to scrape the wax off of your snowboard.
- Repeat step 3 until all of the wax has been removed from your snowboard. Make sure you scrape the sides as well as the bottom of your snowboard.
Now you are ready to put more wax on your snowboard and go snowboarding for the rest of your trip!
Best Snowboard Waxes
According to many snowboarders, hot snowboard wax is the best type of wax to use. Rub-on wax works, but it doesn’t work as well as hot wax. It may be faster to put the rub-on wax onto your snowboard, but the saved time is lost because of the way it can affect your performance on the slopes. Hot wax gets deep into the pores of the wood or fiberglass of your snowboard, which is important.
Now that you know that hot wax is the best type of wax to use on your snowboard, you are likely wondering what the best snowboard waxes are. They are listed for your convenience below.
Demon Hyper Wax
The Demon Hyper Wax is rated 4.7 stars and costs $25 for a 1.06-pound block of wax. It works in all temperatures, so you can use it any time there is snow on the ground. It was invented in 1991 and is made in southern California.
It has a flowery smell that is extremely pleasant. It is most prevalent when you heat up this wax, as it is an iron-on wax. It is also biodegradable, so the wax that comes off as you snowboard won’t harm the environment.
Super Hot Sauce All Temperature Ski and Snowboard Wax
The Super Hot Sauce All Temperature Ski and Snowboard wax is rated 4.7 stars by consumers. It costs $39 for a 3-4 pound block, which is a reasonable price for the size. It claims that you can snowboard for 3 days in a row without having to reapply the wax, but that varies depending on what you do and how much you snowboard. You can apply it using an iron or rubbing it on, so you have options. Although you shouldn’t eat it, this is made of food-grade wax and is biodegradable.
PURL Ski & Snowboard Wax
The PURL Ski & Snowboard Wax is biodegradable and is rated 4.7 stars by consumers. A 1-pound block costs $28. It needs to be used when the weather is cold, so it won’t work well if the outside temperature is below 5° Fahrenheit or higher than 20° Fahrenheit.
You can apply this wax with an iron. When you purchase one of these snowboard wax blocks, 1% of the sales are donated to charities that focus on conserving the environment, which adds to its appeal for many.
ZUMWax Ski/Snowboard Racing Wax
The ZUMWax Ski/Snowboard Racing Wax is rated 4.7 stars by consumers. It costs $20 for a 100 grams or 3.5-ounce block, which is quite expensive in my opinion. However, it is considered one of the best snowboard waxes to use during snowboard races, so the cost is likely worth it. You can use this snowboard wax in all temperatures, and it smells amazing, especially when you are applying it with a hot iron.
NGT SKI and Snowboard Wax
The NGT SKI and Snowboard Wax is rated 4.6 stars. It costs $16 for a 250-gram block, which is a reasonable price. It works in all temperatures and is considered the best snowboard wax for beginner snowboarders. It will greatly increase your speed as you are snowboarding. You can put this on your snowboard with an iron. It is considered environmentally friendly and is non-toxic.
Overall, beginner snowboarders don’t need to apply new wax to their snowboards unless they have purchased a used snowboard and they are not sure if they applied wax correctly. After you go snowboarding a few times, put new wax on your snowboard, especially if you notice a difference in its recent performance on the slopes.