Ski boots are some of the most important gears in your ski setup, and are an investment that you need to take care of. They do not come cheap, which is why it is wise to know how to properly care for them. Regardless of the durability of their materials, they still need to be properly tended to, so that they can last many seasons.
To properly take care of your ski boots, you have to start with the main shell, liner, and then the sole. It is best to take care of these parts first because they tend to receive the most impact of wear and tear. You should also ensure that your boots are clean and dry after each use.
Caring for your ski boots may sound easy, but there are some factors you need to consider to avoid damaging these gears. To learn more about these, read our guide below.
A good pair of ski boots is one of the most essential pieces of equipment of your skiing kit. You need to choose a pair that provides you the best fit, warmth, and comfort to enhance your skiing experience. If you’re not sure about which pair to get, check out our best ski boots buying guide to know which shoes are perfect for you.
Proper maintenance is the key to make your ski boots last for many years. Without the right maintenance, the boots’ outer layer may begin to deteriorate due to wear. Therefore, it is important that you pay attention to this throughout the season. These are some tips you can apply to keep your boots longer.
- At the end of each day of skiing, you have to remove the snow that is stuck to your boots, but you should avoid tapping them against each other.
- Clean the outer shell with warm water and a soft cloth, after removing any dirt and snow.
- Towel dry your boots at the end of every session, because dirty and wet ski boots may cause odors, and even mold, which then may damage your equipment and shorten its lifespan.
- Do not leave your outer shells in direct sunlight, because the color and quality of the plastic may deteriorate over time.
- Avoid putting your outer shells near heat, because this can deform the plastic and cause the outer shell to be brittle.
- At home, remove its footbed or liner, if possible, so you can dry them perfectly. You can read our guide here to know how to choose the proper footbed or insoles for your ski boots.
- Note that it is also important to close the boots’ buckles without tightening them. This way, the plastic will not deform.
Washing your liners
Before doing this, check with the manufacturer if washing your liners is recommended. You can also check the tag for care instructions.
For machine wash
- Use cold water and a gentle detergent to ensure that the fibers will not be damaged, and that the breathability of the liners is maintained. Set your washing machine on gentle wash.
- You can wash your liners with similar materials of similar colors.
- It is best to use low heat in a dryer, or to choose to air dry your liners.
For hand wash
- Use a mild detergent or a vinegar solution, which is an inexpensive option to use for hand-washing your liners.
- Choose a low-heat setting in the dryer, or you may also opt to air dry your liners.
Cleaning your ski boots liners is also important. It is also best if you remove your liners altogether at the end of every ski session, so that you can dry them more effectively before storing them away. If you do not dry your liners thoroughly every time, odors and mold may develop, which will decrease the longevity of your liners.
The benefits of caring for both the liner of ski boots and its outer shell will make your ski boots last longer. Along with caring for your ski boots, you should also offer your feet the maximum levels of hygiene and care.
Your ski boots should fit you well so that you’ll have a better time on the slopes. To help you find a pair that will fit you perfectly, we wrote a guide on how to choose ski boots where we outlined the things that you need to consider when choosing which boots to get.
Other care tips
Care for the soles
Worn out toes and heels can compromise the ski bindings normal operation, and also your safety. So it is best to save your soles from wear and tear, especially on rough, abrasive surfaces to also make it easier to walk in them. Some toe and heel inserts can be replaced as needed.
Cleaning and drying
To have a great day on the slopes, you should have warm, clean, and dry boots, socks, and feet. You have to begin each ski day with dry and clean feet to avoid feeling cold, and to prevent bacteria build-up.
Note that ski socks are made for skiing, so you should avoid wearing them when not needed. Thus, you should only wear them once you are ready to put your boots on.
Properly remove your liners
- First, you have to undo the strap, then unbuckle the boots, and if possible, twist the bails away from the hooks.
- Hold the back of the shell with one hand, and then gently grab the back of the liner with your other hand.
- Gently push the top part of the liner toward the toe of the ski boot, until it is out of the shell.
- Dry the liner exterior with a towel, then remove the foot bed, and let it air-dry.
- Lastly, you can push the tongue forward to let the liner air-dry.
If you ski frequently, it is good to invest in a boot dryer because it dries your boots without the use of direct heat, and just by circulating the air inside of them. Remember not to use a hair dryer, and not to leave your liners or foot beds directly or too close to a heat source.
Ski boots that fit your feet perfectly will lead to a better experience on the slopes. If your ski boots feel a bit uncomfortable on your feet, try some of our tips on how to make your ski boots fit better to make them more comfortable to wear.
End of season care
At the end of the ski season, you should wash the boots shell, in and out, with hot water and a mild detergent. You can also use dishwashing soap. Remember to never use harsh detergents or solutions that can harm the plastic. Then, air-dry the ski boot’s shell.
Once every part is dry, you should inspect the shells, foot beds, liners, and buckles for some signs of wear and tear. You have to make sure that all the buckles are working properly, and that all rivets and screws are in place. You should replace the missing parts or make repairs when needed if possible.
Once you’re done inspecting your ski boots, put them in a clean and dry boot bag, and store them in a dry, cool place. Avoid places where your boots can be exposed to nesting mice or other pests.
Just like any other equipment, you need to properly care for and maintain your ski boots in order to improve their longevity. These boots are not cheap which is why you need to take care of them in order to make the most out of your investment.
The best way to clean your ski boots is by following the care instructions provided by their manufacturer. If, for some reason, you can’t find these instructions, you can follow the maintenance tips that we shared and discussed in this article.
No matter what the quality of your ski boots may be, whether they are cheap or expensive, one thing is for sure: their quality and longevity will improve if you take care of them properly.