Air hockey is one of the most popular games in the United States, and if you have an air hockey table at home, you can be considered a lucky one! It is such great fun to gather with your friends and enjoy a hockey evening together!
However, owners of this game often complain about the air hockey table not blowing air properly. And this is when you might start wondering whether your air hockey table might need some cleaning, and how the cleaning procedure should be done.
Since an air hockey table uses blown air, you definitely need to clean it carefully in order not to cause any damage!
In this article, you will find all the required information on the topic.
We will provide you with a detailed guide that describes the cleaning process step-by-step. With its help, you will be able to clean your air hockey table and do it correctly.
And also, you will learn why it is so important that you maintain your air hockey table and clean it regularly. With all this in mind, you will be able to enjoy this fun game much longer.
All You Need to Know About Cleaning Air Hockey Table
A correct air hockey table maintenance includes regular cleaning as you can guess. It’s like with your car or any appliance you have at home in fact!
If you want it to work properly and serve you longer, make sure that you clean the device regularly.
Also, checking it now and then might help. Like this, you will be able to spot any malfunctions should they appear for any reason, and fix them in time before your air hockey table becomes useless.
Anyway, the most important thing in maintaining your table is correct and thorough cleaning. However, it is not enough to just wipe the surface of this table with a cloth once or twice a month to remove the dust!
Air hockey tables require thorough cleaning. And below, you can find a detailed guide that will explain how this should be done.
Turn the Fan And Blowers On
You might think that this is a piece of weird advice, but believe us, the fans and blowers should be turned on! Make it your rule of thumb when cleaning: the air hockey table fans should be on throughout the entire cleaning process.
Like this, constant airflow will prevent dirt, dust, and any liquids (for example, your cleaning detergent) from getting into the air holes!
We hope you understand that, if any of these things end up in the air holes, they will be plugged. As a result, the airflow will be affected.
Vacuum the Air Hockey Table
This is done to remove dust and cobwebs from the table. Just remember to hold the vacuum hose slightly above the surface of the table so that the vacuum nozzle does not cause damage to the table.
Also, we recommend you vacuum with a very light touch. There is no need to press hard!
While vacuuming, you need to make sure that you cover the area of the whole tabletop. Besides, remember to spend some extra time and vacuum over the air holes to remove dust particles that might be stuck there!
Scrub the Table
Scrubbing is another essential part of the cleaning process. Keeping the air blowers turned on, start with wiping down the surface of the table. For this purpose, you can use a clean microfiber cloth or a soft cotton cloth. During this cleaning stage, you have the option of simply using a slightly damp cloth or using a cleaner.
Should you decide to use a cleaning product, remember that it has to be an alcohol-based cleanser.
For example, isopropyl alcohol or dishwashing liquid will work just fine. Or you may also opt for a regular window cleaning spray (only make sure that it does not contain ammonia!).
Apply the cleaner directly onto the cloth and not to the table, and use as little liquid as possible so that it can evaporate and dry quickly.
It is important that you scrub hard and vigorous enough!
Like this, you will be able to lift out all the particles of dirt that might be stuck to the table. And except for the tabletop, remember to clean down the exterior of it as well, including the legs!
By the way, you might hear or read that some owners of air hockey tables have an opinion that it is not correct to wipe the inner side rails of the table. They explain it so that a little amount of dust found there actually gives the puck a proper bounce. As a result, this increases the chances of making bank shots.
Clean the Air Holes
Air holes typically get clogged and dirty more than other parts of your air hockey table. This is why just vacuuming the air holes might not be enough to remove the particles of dirt and grime from them.
To cope with this task, you will need to give the air holes of your air hockey table special attention. To do it, you will need to prepare one of the following tools:
- a drill bit
- cotton swabs
- or pipe cleaners
The cleaning guide is pretty simple though:
- Insert the tool that you chose into every hole, dealing with one at a time.
- Slowly and carefully lift the dirt up and out.
- Pay attention not to pushing dirt further into the hole!
While doing this, make sure the fan is still turned on! It will allow the dirt to get blown out as you take it out from the holes.
Polish the Air Hockey Table
In fact, you don’t have to polish your air hockey table during the cleaning procedure, this is not mandatory at all.
However, we would still recommend you do so since it helps restore and retain the smoothness of your air hockey table. As a result, it will optimize the gameplay and the life of the table will be extended.
For polishing, you should opt for a tabletop polishing product that is designed specifically for air hockey tables. Also, remember to apply just a thin even coat over the entire surface! No need to cover the surface of the table with the polisher completely.
If you have a table made of wood, it’s ok if you make use of regular furniture wax instead.
But anyway, remember to polish the sides and legs as well! It is important to use a small amount of wax/polish because too much of it could clog the air holes.
When the polishing wax (or whatever product you use) is dry, remember to wipe the entire surface of your table down. For this, it will be best of all if you use a clean, dry microfiber cloth or a soft cotton cloth! Also, make sure you buff sufficiently, like this, you will get a shiny gloss. By the way, silicone spray lubricants also work well to give the air hockey table a nice shine and smoothness.
The Final Stage. Sanding the Pucks and Mallets
Have you noticed that the game tends to be somewhat slower recently than usual? If this is the case, then the problem might not always be the table itself, as most of you think.
The problem might be with the puck. It is expected that, with use, the pucks will undergo some normal and adequate amount of wear and tear. As a result, they will eventually develop some minor imperfections.
Luckily, this can be fixed by using ultra-fine sanding paper. All you need to do is gently sand the puck to make it super smooth again.
Besides the pucks, mallets also undergo wear and tear and might develop some abrasions.
Suing the same ultra-fine sandpaper, gently sand the bottom of the mallets. This might not work if you are using mallets with a felt bottom, in which case you can simply replace the felt pads.
Like this, now you have a complete and detailed description of the cleaning process for your air hockey table. As you can see, it consists of quite many steps, but we recommend you not skip any of them. Like this, your cleaning will be more thorough, and thus, the table will serve you longer and work better.
Why Do You Need To Clean Your Air Hockey Table?
Some of you might be wondering why it is so essential to clean your air hockey table regularly. Can’t it just function without the cleaning routine? Well, let’s try to figure it out.
As you surely know, good and even airflow is a crucial component that makes the work of an air hockey table sufficient! The better the airflow the more you will enjoy the game. This is why it is important that the air holes of the table remain clean and unclogged.
This is one major reason why you would need to clean your air hockey table. And this is why the cleaning routine should be held regularly.
On the other hand, we also have a surface of the table. What’s wrong with it, you may ask? See, the surface of the air hockey table needs to remain clean all the time. It is important because in this case, the puck will be able to glide all over the surface effortlessly.
However, if there is any dirt and grime on the table surface, be ready that the puck will be experiencing drag. Of course, this issue will not make your game more enjoyable! Besides drag, the puck could also end up bumping, bucking, or even flying off the table if the playing surface is not as smooth as it should be.
But if you think that dust and dirt will only affect the speed and accuracy of the game, you are wrong.
If the surface of your air hockey table is not maintained and cleaned properly, all the dirt can also cause damage to the playing surface. If it happens, you will find chips on it, as an example.
So now you see why keeping your air hockey table clean is a must. As for the frequency of cleaning, it will depend on how dusty the area where you play is. However, as a rule of thumb, cleaning your table once a week should be more than enough to keep its surface working optimally and efficiently.
Well, this is all that we wanted to share with you today on the subject of the air hockey table cleaning routine.
Now you know why it is essential to keep it clean and well-maintained regularly, and how exactly your air hockey table should be cleaned. With the cleaning guide that we gave you in this article, you will be able to effortlessly keep your table clean, smooth, and thus optimally working.
Only then you will be able to enjoy the game fully!
Frequently Asked Questions
⭐How often do I need to clean my air hockey table?
Usually, cleaning it once a month is enough. But it will depend on how dusty the room where you play is.
⭐Can I wash the surface of an air hockey table with baking soda?
Well, basically you can. But we’d recommend you use cleaning products based on soda for better results.