How to Clean a Fishing Reel After Saltwater Use – Best Guide 2023

If you don’t clean your reel after fishing in salt water, the minerals will build up over time. Saltwater contains corrosive materials that can damage the internal parts of your reel. So, you must know how to clean a fishing reel after saltwater use.

When this happens, the reel’s gears may become damaged or jammed. This can make it impossible to cast your line properly. 

Luckily, there are several ways that you can easily clean a fishing reel after saltwater use. In this context, we will briefly describe from cleaning procedure with homemade tools. So, without further more discussion, let’s get started.

Should You Clean Your Reel After Saltwater Fishing?

Should You Clean Your Reel After Saltwater Fishing

Saltwater is abrasive to metal. That’s why you should clean your reel after saltwater fishing. If you are ready to go on a fishing trip then you must clean to get better performance. This section will help you understand the importance of cleaning your fishing reels after saltwater use.

Here are the top reasons to clean your reel. 

(i) If you don’t, some parts of your reel can end up with build-up of salt that can corrode them.

(ii) If you don’t, you will likely have problems casting the reel. Besides, it can become stuck, or not work smoothly.

(iii) Parts of the reel like the bail. The drag system are susceptible to corrosion by saltwater, which if left can ruin the reel.

(iv) Salt is corrosive. If it builds up on the gearing or bail arm it will cause damage to these parts of your reel that could make them need to be replaced.

(v) Salt will also get into your reels and make them stiffer over time if they aren’t cleaned often enough.

That’s why you must clean your favorite reel after saltwater use.

Which Parts of The Reel Should You Clean And Which Ones Are Not? 

If you’re going to clean your reel, it’s important to know which parts are the most important. Generally speaking, you should clean the:

(i) Spool: The most important cleaning part is the spool. If you clean this part, then you can keep your reel running smoothly for a long time.

(ii) Handle and the Bail arm: The other parts that need to be cleaned are the handle and the bail arm. The handle and bail arm are connected to each other through a rod. So they should be cleaned together every time you clean your reel.

On The Other Hand, You Shouldn’t Clean The Inside Of The Reel. Here’s Why: 

It is unnecessary to clean the reel’s inside because this part is not in direct contact with the line. However, if you want to make sure that your reel is properly maintained, then you can clean it as well.

So, before cleaning the reel, you must follow this section. 

How to Clean a Fishing Reel After Saltwater Use: Homemade Fishing Reel Cleaner

Homemade fishing reel cleaner is an excellent way to clean a fishing reel with vinegar and alcohol. It will help keep your equipment safe from rust and other potential damage. These damages can occur from saltwater use.

If your budget is small and you cannot afford a commercial reel cleaner, try making your own. This section will show you how to make and use a homemade reel-cleaning solution. Let’s have a look: 

(i) Use Vinegar to clean your reel

Step 01: First, you have to dissolve the baking soda in water first. Then mix it with the vinegar.

Step 02: If you want to clean your reel fast and easily, you should also soak it in a bucket.

Step 03: Then, pour the solution into a spray bottle. But oiling a spinning reel is not an easy job. Vinegar works best in warm or hot water.

Step 04: Pour the solution on your reel and let it sit for 15 minutes. This is perfect if you have very minimal saltwater buildup.

Step 05: Choose your cleaning supplies wisely. Then, rinse the reel with fresh water. Dry thoroughly with a soft towel.

With this cleaning technique, you can have a clean a untangled fishing reel in just 2 minutes!

(ii) Use Alcohol to clean your reel

Step 01: Remove the spool and align it with the base of your reel.

Step 02: Remove the screws at the bottom of your reel and take off the side plate.

Step 03: Clean the gears with a toothbrush and alcohol.

Step 04: Use a microfiber cloth to dry all of the gears, then apply a dab of grease on them.

Step 05: Reinstall the side plate, spool, and line.

By regularly cleaning your fishing reel with alcohol you can ensure that you’re always ready for a big catch.

Fishing Reel Maintenance

Fishing Reel Maintenance 

Choosing the right size of a spinning reel is essential for angling. Fishing reel maintenance is also key to getting the most out of your gear. It can help you identify problems that you might not have noticed otherwise. So, here are some of the most important maintenance you should follow.

Let’s have a look. 

  • Open up your reel and check for sand or dirt in the bearings, gears, and brake handles.
  • If there is excessive grime on the line, run the line through a paper towel soaked with rubbing alcohol to clean it up. This method also works well on sticky knots and tangles.
  • Polish the metal parts with candle wax or light machine oil to keep them looking shiny. It also prevents oxidation which can lead to rusting.
  • Grease moving parts with a quality lubricant such as marine grease or white lithium grease. 
  • Light-tasting oil such as canola oil or vegetable oil can be used for reels that come into contact with a lot of water.
  • Check the condition of all parts before using the reel to ensure they work properly.
  • Before you throw your line, you must familiarize yourself with switching a fishing reel from right to left-hand use.

Following these simple steps will ensure that your fishing reel is well-maintained.

Fishing Reel Cleaning Kits: You Should Collect Before Any Fishing Trip

 In that case, it is very important to know what is the best trout spinning reel. And how to clean your fishing reel properly before you leave on any fishing trip. Avoid extra hassle when getting ready and save time by collecting cleaning kits. Let me present you two cleaning kits you should collect before any fishing trip. Let’s see what goodness is inside them.

You can learn to throw a spinning reel far and catch fish like a pro with just a little bit of practice.

#1 Abu Garcia Maintenance Kit

The first kit we recommend is Abu Garcia Maintenance Kit. It is a useful tool to clean the reel after saltwater use. It includes all the necessary parts to keep your reels in good condition. This kit is also very easy to use. Just insert the brush inside the reel and rotate it for 3-4 minutes.

This cleaning kit can be helpful when you are on a trip, so you do not need to carry extra things. This will save you time and get better performance from your reel.

#2 Ardent Reel Butter Lubrication

The 2nd kit that you should collect is Ardent Reel Butter Lubrication. It is a useful tool for cleaning the reel after saltwater use. It can save your time and make the cleaning process a lot easier. The product has two features: super low viscosity, bearings for maximum protection.

The first feature is super low viscosity. It means that it dissolves dirt easily and quickly. You need to apply Ardent Reel Butter Lubrication on the reel. Let it sit for a few minutes. Then wipe off with a cloth dampened with fresh water. This process will not only clean your reel but also apply lubrication to it. So it will last longer without rusting or corrosion!

The second feature is bearings for maximum protection. This means this oil will protect your reel from corrosion by keeping all parts moving smoothly without friction!

You can also search for one of the most popular Shakespeare reels, it is essential to know how to handle and care for it.

Bonus Tips: Can You Use WD-40 On Reels?

WD-40 is a popular brand of multipurpose oil, but it’s not actually an oil. It’s a solvent. It means it dissolves dirt and other materials. WD-40 can be an effective way to clean reels and keep them in good working order.

The most important thing to know about using WD-40 on reels is to be careful when cleaning them. If you use too much WD-40, then the reel will lose its lubrication and stop working correctly. This can also happen if you don’t clean the reel often enough.

Spinning reels are popular and good among both novice and seasoned fishermen because of their adaptability and user-friendliness.

How Do You Get The Right Balance?

If your fishing reel doesn’t lock, have it fixed as quickly as possible so you can go back out on the water. First, take a look at the instructions for your reel. If there are no specific instructions on how to clean it, then follow these steps:

1) Find out what kind of reel you have and whether or not it has bearings inside. If so, ensure they’re covered with oil before cleaning them with WD-40.

2) Spray WD-40 onto a rag or towel and wipe down every part of your reel that needs cleaning.

Final Word

Saltwater is especially hard on fishing equipment and can cause corrosion inside your reel. If left untreated, this can damage your reel and make it unusable.

To avoid this problem you should know how to clean a fishing reel after saltwater use. You maybe already learned after reading this blogpost. When compared to casting reels, spinning reels are much more portable.

If you want to know more let us know about your question. Our friendly team will assist you in this regard. Thanks for your great effort. In general, you should try to get a strong, knot-resistant fishing line that doesn’t twist.

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