How to Clean Golf Clubs: A Step-by-Step Guide

by | Last updated Mar 8, 2024

How to Clean Golf Clubs

Maintaining the cleanliness of your golf clubs is essential for preserving their performance and extending their lifespan. Dirt, grass, and other debris can affect the club’s grip on the ball, altering the accuracy and distance of your shots. This comprehensive guide will walk you through how to clean golf clubs, ensuring they remain in top condition for your next round on the golf course.

Understanding Your Golf Clubs

Each golf club in your bag, from irons to drivers and putters, is designed with specific materials that can influence the cleaning process. Knowing whether you’re dealing with steel shafts or graphite and the type of grip materials is crucial for choosing the light-gleaning methods and avoiding damage.

Preparing for Cleaning

1. Tools and Materials Needed

Gather the following essentials before starting the cleaning process:

  • A soft-bristle brush or unused toothbrush to remove surface dirt without scratching the clubs.
  • Mild dish soap to create soapy water that’s effective yet gentle on your clubs.
  • Warm water in a bucket or the kitchen sink to soak and rinse the clubs.
  • A microfiber cloth or towel for drying.

2. Setting Up Your Cleaning Station

Choose a well-ventilated place with easy access to water. Organize your tools and materials so everything you need is within arm’s reach.

Step-by-Step Cleaning Guide

Cleaning golf clubs

1. Cleaning the Club Heads

  1. Soak the Head: Dip the heads of your irons and fairway woods into warm, soapy water for a few minutes to loosen the dirt.
  2. Scrub the Head: Use a soft toothbrush or brush to scrub the clubhead gently, particularly the grooves. For stubborn dirt, a wooden toothpick can help dislodge debris without damaging the club.
  3. Rinse and Dry: Rinse the club head with clean water. Then, use a towel to dry it thoroughly to prevent rust.

2. Cleaning the Shafts

Wipe the club shaft with a damp cloth dipped in soapy water. A soft cloth will suffice for steel shafts. Be gentle to avoid scratches on graphite shafts. Dry thoroughly after cleaning.

3. Cleaning the Grips

Golf club grips can accumulate sweat, oils, and dirt, affecting your grip and the overall shot.

  1. Wet the Grip: Using a damp cloth, wet the grip without soaking it.
  2. Scrub Gently: Apply a small amount of soap with a soft brush or cloth and gently scrub the grip. For older grips that may be more delicate, use less force.
  3. Rinse: Wipe the hold with a damp cloth to remove any soap residue.
  4. Dry: Use a dry towel to extract any remaining moisture.
Cleaning golf clubs

Drying and Storage

After cleaning, ensure all parts of the golf club are completely dry before storing them in your golf bag. This final step is crucial to avoid moisture damage or rust.

Advanced Cleaning Tips

For a deeper clean, especially for clubs with significant buildup or older clubs that need rejuvenation, consider using an ultrasonic cleaner or specialized golf club cleaning solutions designed for tough stains and rust removal.

Maintenance Between Cleanings

Wipe down the club heads and grips with a damp cloth after each round to extend the time between deep cleans. This quick clean helps prevent the buildup of dirt and grime.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid using a wire brush or abrasive tools on the club heads or shafts, as these can scratch and damage the club. Also, ensure that grips or graphite shafts are not soaked in water, which could weaken them over time.

Professional Cleaning Services

If your clubs require more than just an essential cleaning, professional cleaning services can provide a thorough maintenance routine, especially for high-end clubs or those needing special care.

Cleaning golf clubs


Regularly cleaning your golf clubs keeps them looking great and ensures they perform their best on the golf course. Following this step-by-step process, you can maintain your club’s pristine and ready for the next round or tournament. Clean and well-maintained equipment is the key to a great golf game.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I clean my golf clubs and grips?

Clean your golf clubs after every round to remove dirt, sand, and grass. Golf grips should be cleaned every few weeks or more often if they’re visibly dirty or feel slippery. Regular cleaning maintains the clubs’ condition and ensures better performance on the course.

What’s the best way to remove stubborn dirt from club grooves?

The best way to tackle stubborn dirt in club grooves is using a soft toothbrush or a specialized groove tool. Soak the head in hot water for a few minutes to loosen the soil, then gently scrub the grooves. This method effectively removes the remaining dirt without damaging the club.

Can I use hot water to clean golf club grips?

You can use hot water to clean golf club grips, but avoid soaking them. Instead, dampen a cloth with hot water and mild soap, then gently rub the grips. This method helps remove sweat, oils, and dirt, rejuvenating old grips and improving grip on the club.

What are the signs that it’s time to replace my golf grips?

Signs that it’s time to replace your golf grips include noticeable wear, a slick or slippery feel, and visible cracks. If cleaning your grips doesn’t restore their tackiness or they feel uncomfortable holding them, it’s likely time for a replacement to ensure awesome performance and comfort during play.

Is there a trick to drying golf clubs and grips after cleaning?

The best trick for drying golf clubs and grips after cleaning is to use a microfiber towel that absorbs moisture quickly. For clubs, gently wipe down each part, paying extra attention to the grooves and shaft. For grips, thoroughly rub them with the towel and allow them to air dry completely before storing or using them again. This method prevents moisture damage and maintains the clubs’ condition.