Dining pool tables offer the best of both worlds – dining at meal times and enjoying billiards right after. With this dual purpose highlight, it’s only common that maintaining its cleanliness comes with double the responsibility. While maintenance of a pool dining table may seem complicated, do not despair. Pool table maintenance is easier than you think.
In this article, we’ll highlight the best tips to keep your pool dining table spick and span – Ready for a round of meal conversation and a few pool games with the whole family.
A Guide on Properly Cleaning a Pool Dining Table
A pool dining table is quite the investment, but with proper care and maintenance, they can last you for years. To fully break down the proper ways to ensure your tables remain functional and clean for many years to come, let’s discover the best cleaning and storing practices for every part of the pool dining table. Afterall, your pool table’s longevity will depend on how well you take care of it.
Play Field Felt (Napped or Napless Cloth)
Keeping the playfield felt of your tables clean is essential to getting the full game experience from it. To keep it clean, you should regularly brush your cloth to loosen chalk dust, or debris that may accumulate within your cloth. After which, use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to remove any chalk dust or dirt particles that you have loosened from brushing it down. If your cloth is napped, i.e. has a certain directional grain, then look to brush your cloth in a singular direction.
Whether your play field is felted with napped or napless speed cloth, use the tips above to routinely upkeep your cloth. Depending on the frequency of play, we recommend brushing your cloth fortnightly, or monthly if you play less often.
Pool Dining Table Top
As a Pool Dining table, your table will come typically with 2 pieces or 3 pieces dining top. If you’re using it as a dining table, the top will require frequent wipe downs just as you will do with a regular dining table. This is to prevent food stains from seeping into the wood top. For this, we recommend using wood cleaner. Follow the instruction on the label and use a microfiber cloth to protect the surface of your table, particularly for lacquered finishes.
Pool Table Pockets
The pockets of billiard tables are one of the most important parts of the table and should be properly maintained to ensure a good experience. One of the best ways to ensure they are free from dust is by wiping a dry cloth over their curvatures. For a thorough cleaning process – recommended for pockets made of leather, it’s best to use a soft pool table brush or a mini vacuum cleaner to wipe away dust and debris in hard-to-reach areas. Using a leather conditioner is also recommended as leather pockets may age out if not conditioned enough.
When cleaning around the pockets of the table, it’s also vital to check for loose stitching and tears from years of use. If it is bolted, you may also want to routinely tighten the bolts, as the constant potting of balls is known to loosen the pockets over time. Basic maintenance will save you money in the long run.
Cushions and Rails
The rail cushions of pool tables are vital to making game play more fun and exciting with a tight ball rebound. To clean them, you should first vacuum up any dust or dirt particles with a vacuum cleaner. You can then use a damp cloth or a soft brush to further remove any stubborn stains.
These side bumpers should also be checked regularly for tears, tightness, and even looseness. Replace cushion rubber with care as per needed.
Side Frame and Legs
The pool table side frame and legs will generally be less dusty than the flat surfaces, as it’s harder for it to trap dust. Nevertheless, the same cleaning tips that we recommended above will apply.
It’s also important to check for any signs of wear and tear in your tables so that you can address the issue promptly. Your table should not be shaky, and it can be potentially dangerous – given the weight of the slate – if that is the case. Be sure to seek professional assistance the moment you find your table to be shaky. This could be a simple issue like a loose bolt, or point to more worrying structural issues in your table. This is more common in lower quality tables built by non-reputed makers.
Cues and Cue Accessories
While this does not necessarily pertain to the table itself, cleaning the pool accessories and snooker cues that come with it can reduce the accumulation of chalk, dust, debris, and other harmful substances.
To ensure the cleanliness of cue balls, you should regularly wipe down the surface with a damp cloth dipped in soap solution. Additionally, if there are any stains on the balls that won’t come off with regular cleaning, you can use a bit of rubbing alcohol on your cloth for proper cleaning maintenance.
Replace if: The pool or snooker balls have noticeable dents and chipped surfaces that will not just affect game play, but will start to chip off other parts of your table like the pockets, cushions or slate.
Cue sticks, or cues, should be wiped down with a clean cloth after every use. Use light strokes with your cloth. If any stubborn stains won’t come off, you can use a specialized cue cleaning solution for easier removal. Additionally, if your cues have metal joints, you can use a bit of oil or WD-40 to lubricate it and prevent rusting.
Replace if: Cues have warped or bent. It’s also time to buy a new one if its leather tip has minimally vanished to a size of a coin.
Be sure to read our in-depth guide on buying pool dining tables and its accessories for more details on this matter.
Neglecting proper maintenance and care for billiards table accessories is just as harmful as not cleaning the table as much as it should be. This is the same for any type of table there is used for sport, like tennis tables and tables snooker and for shuffleboard. Accessories like chalk, tip scuffers and shapers, bridge sticks, cue cases, and cue racks are best kept clean, organized, and properly stored. This ensures that when you use the pool dining table for playing anytime, you have them ready to be used. At the same time, it minimizes the accumulation of dirt and the possible deterioration of the pool tables after years of use.
If your pool tables come with chairs for its dining purpose, be sure they are kept clean at all times, too.
Common Maintenance Mistakes to Correct
1. Using harsh chemicals. Harsh chemicals can be too abrasive for certain table materials, so avoid using them when cleaning the billiard table or its accessories. For example, using a wood cleaner on felt fabric can stain its surface, so ensure the solution is only used within the wood material of the table.
2. Using wet rags. Although wet rags can help with removing tough dirt and debris, they should not be used on the surface of the table or its accessories. The moisture can damage the fabric or cause rusting in metal components. Additionally, use lukewarm water for wiping down the table, instead of warm water to prevent any temperature-related issues.
3. Forgetting to lubricate metal parts of the pool table. Metal parts of the table should be lubricated regularly with light oil or WD-40 to prevent rust and corrosion from developing over time.
4. Forgetting to clean the pockets. When cleaning the entire pool dining table, one might forget to clean the pockets, or even forego it altogether. This should not be. Make sure to clean your pockets along with the table’s playing surface, legs, and rails.
5. Neglecting proper storage care guidelines. If pool dining tables are not used daily, it’s best to store them properly, preferably with a cloth over them. This is doubly important if you’re planning to leave your pool dining table in stock for longer periods of time, as it may be prone to dust, chemicals, and weathering depending on its storage spot.
Dealer Tips: Other Things You Should Know
Some may fail to notice the importance of leveling in tables, but it’s one of the most vital aspect in the game of billiards, so keep it in your notes. A word of advice? Use leveling tools to ensure that your pool dining table is at its leveled state. Also, check the adjustable legs or leg levelers that some pool dining tables may have and have them replaced as necessary.
Just like other gaming equipment and table like arcade machines, football tables, and hockey tables, storage is an important aspect of maintaining table durability and functionality.
When storing a pool table, it’s important to make it a habit to check if it is properly protected from dust and sunlight–if kept in outdoor spot. The best way to do so is by using a pool table cover or blanket to drive away any dust and dirt particles that may accumulate over time within the table parts. You should also ensure that the table is in an area, indoor or outdoor, with consistent temperature and humidity levels to maintain its key features.
For best results, it’s recommended to clean the table weekly. This should include a light vacuuming to its playing surface, pockets, rails, frame, and legs. Additionally, accessories that come with the table, such as cue balls or sticks should be cleaned after every game.
Seek the Help of a Professional
As with all things, if you aren’t sure with your table maintenance procedures, it’s best to consult a professional about it. This is one of the best dealer tips to remember.
Your pool dining table’s maintenance is important if you want to enjoy a good game of billiards or just dining in general. With the above tips, you can rest assured that your table will be in top condition for many years to come. Happy cleaning!
Feeling inspired by this article? You might want to check out our assortment of pool tables for sale. We also have a selection of arcade and shuffleboard tables which are very complementary to a pool table for your games room.