Do Scratches On A Snowboard Affect Its Performance?

Nothing is worse than going downhill, particularly during the start of the snowboarding season, and accidentally going over some rocks only to find a nasty scratch underneath the base of your board.

However, you may be wondering whether scratches on the snowboard will affect its performance.

Hence, Do Scratches On A Snowboard Affect Its Performance?

Yes! Scratches affect the performance of your boards, and the ride will not be as smooth.

However, it will also depend on how deep the scratch is. The base of your snowboard can become scratched or worn, which will affect your performance over time. This will decrease its production over time by creating drag, slow you down, and even make your slide less predictable.

Although boards have been designed to take some punishment, giving it a good wax can make it good to go. The performance of your snowboard will not be as bad if the scratches are shallow, but if they are making your ride not to be as smooth, it is recommended that you re-wax it.

You can easily fill in any gouges or scratches by yourself using wax, while deep scratches will require to be filled with P-Tex and base welds.

How to DIY Wax Your Snowboard

1. Assessing The Damage

Before you begin repairing your snowboard, it is important to assess and understand what is doable at home and what you should take to the repair shop.

For very shallow scratches less than 0.4 mm deep, it is okay to ignore them. If the scratches are narrow, mid-depth, or do not affect the edges, you easily repair them yourself.

On the other hand, if the scratches are cavernous and touch the edge or core, it’s more recommendable to take your snowboard to the shop for repair.

Similarly, if the bases have had lots of scratches and have been repaired multiple times, take it for repair for stone grinding.

A stone grind will smoothen and flatten your bases, putting them into a pattern or structure for more speed. If you decide you can repair the damage yourself, follow on for the next steps.

2. Getting The Tools You Need

To get started, you should first ensure you have everything you require on your table.

Before beginning the repair, ensure everything is all accessible on your hand.

These include

  • a scraper
  • a scalpel or blade
  • a P-Tex candle
  • a lighter
  • a base cleaner
  • a cloth
  • and some scrap metal/wood.

3. Clean Your Snowboard Base

You should ensure that the snow base is clean from anything that stuck on it when it was being scratched so that it can readily absorb the new wax.

Start by cleaning the base with a brush and then use a clean cloth.

After that, spray the board with a spray base cleaner and wipe it dry with a clean cloth.

Also, cut away any extra material that could be sticking out of the board using a scalpel or sharp blade.

4. Melt P-Tex Into The Scratches

Start by lighting a candle and have it nearby, as it is preferable to use a constant flame instead of a lighter.

Take a P-Tex stick and place it in the candle flame until it lights blue and sets alight.

Carefully direct the P-Tex drips into the scratched section, and get a scrap of metal or wood nearby to rid of the initial drips.

When the P-Tex starts to melt, quickly pass it along the length of the scratch for the drip to fill up the space.

After making one or two passes, you should put off the P-Tex stick and leave the molten wax layer in the scratch to cool for some time.

The number of layers you will require to fill the gouge will depend on how deep it is.

After cooling, repeat the same procedure until the damaged area is filled and the new P-Tex is strongly sitting on the snowboard base.

Then give the board some time to cool down completely.

Ensure not to overheat the base by going over the same spot or leaving the iron in a single spot for much longer.

5. Remove Any Excess P-Tex

One of the mistakes you can make is creating a wax-build-up by not scraping your board sufficiently.

Using a scalpel or knife, scrape off any excess P-Tex material from the sides of the repaired scratches.

Use a bastard file to file off the bumpy surface by running it diagonally across the repair.

Go slowly and gently in the same direction to ensure you don’t rip out any filling.

When your repair is about to be flat, run a metal or sharp plastic scrapper across the repair diagonally.

Work all the repairs in sections until all the excess P-Tex is eliminated and the repaired section is in line with the rest of the base.

You can also wipe off any wax that may have run over the edge using a pad. This will help restore a slippery and even sheen to the base.

How Often Should You Wax the Snowboard?

Your new snowboard comes pre-waxed. You can hence ride your board for one to two days before the need to apply new wax.

The factory wax lasts for a lesser time than a hot wax iron.

Normally, you should hot wax your board each three to four days of snowboarding.

This will give you a better overall performance.

You only need to ensure you are using the right type of wax for particular climatic conditions.

For instance, for cooler temperatures, it’s more ideal to use green/blue wax.

For warmer temperatures, you should use red/orange wax. For conditions in between, you can consider using yellow wax.

How Do You Remove Old Wax from Your Snowboard?

Each time you wax your snowboard, you will need to remove the excess wax.

However, if you always have excess wax or need to remove old wax from your snowboard, you should consider using less next time.

You don’t require much wax to make your snowboard perform at its best.

You only require the wax to fill the base pores and scratches for a smooth ride.

You can either use a plastic or metal scraper to remove old wax from the snowboard.

You will most probably be removing the wax from the sections of the board that did not come into strong contact with the park or mountain.


Do scratches on snowboard matter? 

How To: Fix Base Gouges