How To Clean Pool Balls & Keep them Shiny

Are you having a hard time thinking of how to clean your pool/billiard balls? How often do you clean it? Does it bother you when you see its yellowish or grayish color, especially when you play a game? Well, if yes, then this article is for you.

Did you know that currently, the most popular and best billiard balls come from Aramith?

Dirt, heat, air, temperature, and residues are some of the main factors why the natural color of pool ball fades away. Typically, a standard pool ball doesn’t quickly turn into yellow for a short period, but that depends on the quality and materials. Although it’s normal, a billiard ball turns yellow when stored at a hot temperature, especially when it is directly exposed to sunlight. It is the reason why its standard color breaks down into a lighter and off-white look. It is usually called photo-degradation.

Usually, the Polyester resin ball becomes gray over time, while the phenolic resin ball can turn into a yellowish color. Meaning from the vibrant standard color of the pool ball, when exposing it to heat, it can fade away.

Pool balls need to be cleaned and polished to avoid any uncertain movement, friction, or imbalance during a billiard game. You need to remember that if the ball does not have a perfectly smooth look, it can move in a different direction or away from the player’s desired movement.

But you don’t have to worry, because in this article we will help you get rid of those yellowish or grayish ball color that is unpleasing to the eyes.

4 Easy Ways to Clean Pool Balls

There are different ways on how to clean pool balls, from easy-to-use products to professional ones. When you are on a budget and play billiards just for fun, you can use materials you often see at your home. But when you are a professional pool player, you might want to clean them with a high-quality product to preserve their texture and vibrancy.

You must be careful when you clean each ball so that the color and smoothness do not come off.

Using a Pool Ball Cleaner (Recommended!)

Using a pool ball cleaner is highly recommended, especially for pool balls that cannot be cleaned in simple ways. It is easy to apply and affordable as well.

Materials Needed:


  1. Grab all the materials needed in one place.
  2. Prepare the professional pool ball restorer solution and a microfiber towel.
  3. Pour a tiny amount (about 1-2 drops) of the pool ball cleaner solution.
  4. Wipe all the dirt using the same towel for about 3-5 minutes.

Optional Step:

  1. After cleaning all the pool balls with the pool ball cleaner, you can polish them with an Aramith Billiard Ball restorer and a clean towel.

Using a Soap or Detergent

Materials Needed:

  • A mild soap or laundry detergent (any detergents will do)
  • A bucket of water
  • A microfiber towel or cloth


  1. Prepare all the needed materials in one place.
  2. Use lukewarm water and fill the bucket about halfway.
  3. Put the pool balls in the bucket then the detergent and make sure that they are submerged.
  4. Leave it for about 5 to 15 minutes.
  5. After this, rinse the pool balls with the microfiber towel. Rub it as smoothly as possible for 5-10 minutes
  6. Then wipe it again will a soft damp towel to rinse off the soapy part.
  7. Lastly, put it in a cool, dry place and let it dry.

Optional step:

  • You can use a regular car wax to polish the balls.

DIY Pool Ball Washer

If you are a little bit adventurous, here is a quick and easy project for you to try: Make Your Own Pool Ball Washer! Building this thing is cheap (about $40 more or less) and should be quick (about an hour if you already have the necessary materials). The only disadvantage of this DIY Pool Ball washer is it is very loud!

Materials Needed:

  • A bucket
  • A brand-new or pre-owned orbital buffer like this. Make sure that it can fit inside the bucket.
  • A piece of carpet (about the same size as the bucket’s interior.)


  1. Place the buffer at the bottom of the bucket
  2. Tape both ends of the carpet to form a circle. Make sure it fits the bucket.
  3. Place the carpet above the buffer.
  4. Place the balls inside the bucket. For smaller buckets, do not overload it and make sure that there is enough space so the balls can rotate properly.
  5. Start the buffer and wait for about 5 – 10 minutes.

Here is a great video on how to build it:

Using a Pool Ball Cleaning Machine

If you fancy a tool that can save you time and the manual labor of cleaning your balls by hands, then you may get a BallStar Pool and Billiards Ball Cleaner. It is a pool ball cleaning machine that helps to clean your pool balls efficiently and conveniently. It comes with a high price tag though! But if you are a busy person or just wanted to splurge on a device that can help you to save time, then this might be a perfect option for you.

Using it is very easy, you just need to put the cleaner that comes with it inside and then put the pool balls in. Although it can only do eight balls at a time. It also produces less noise than the DIY Pool Ball washer.

Cleaning Do’s and Dont’s


  • Make sure to remove all the dirt as much as possible.
  • Dry them using a microfiber towel. Let them dry first before playing.
  • Do not put too much cleaning solution. 1-2 drops are enough.


  • Using a dishwasher is a no, no. Dishwashers with a chemical ingredient can damage the pool balls that can permanently remove their color.
  • Using bleach can also permanently damage the balls, like leaving them will pink or white dots all over them.
  • Using other house cleaning chemicals or material can ruin the pool balls’ natural look and texture.


How to remove yellow stains and get my pool balls white again?

Yellow stains from the pool or billiard ball are not often noticeable. Most of the time, the yellowish color will appear gradually over time. Are you having a hard time thinking about how to clean those stains? Here are some tips to achieve that white and colorful pool ball again. Oxidation refers to the results from the yellow color on the pool ball that usually happens when a material begins to rust.

The simplest way to remove this is by using a house cleaner, baking soda in particular. If you do not have this kind of product, you can use vinegar and water as an alternative. But first, you have to wipe off all the dirt from the ball. But the bleach onto the container and dissolve it. You may now put the pool balls and leave them for about 20-30 minutes after this. You have to monitor this and check if the yellow color fades because too much bleach might damage the texture and color of the ball. After soaking, wipe it slowly with a clean towel.

How to prevent pool balls from yellowing

Are you that bothered by your pool ball turning into yellow. One of the leading causes of this problem is when exposed to heat that turns its vibrant, shiny color into yellow or gray. According to studies, any material or object that absorbs light has a reflection. It is the reason why most of the color, whether what type of object they are, turns into yellow. So, to avoid your pool balls from yellowing, you should always put it in a cool and dry area wherein it is far away from direct sunlight. You need to keep it away from heat exposure. With this method, you will ensure that your pool ball is in good condition.

How often should you clean pool balls

You need to know that cleaning your pool balls regularly is essential to ensure that they are still in a standard shape and good condition. Who does not want to play a billiard game hearing the clack of billiard balls hitting each other, right? If you play regularly, cleaning them once a month is highly recommended.

Also, here are some of the advantages of cleaning pool balls.

  • If you hear those clacking of balls, you will feel the excitement and enjoyment at the same time. Remember that clean and polished pool ball makes it easier and faster for you to win a game.
  • If the pool balls are clean, it will have a positive impact on the pool table. We apply chalk to the pool cue before hitting the cue ball. Most of the time, the chalk debris falls on the pool table, making the pool ball harder to move and impacting the balls.
  • It will help the player get back on the game, and it will be more attractive and appealing to see those bright colors of the pool balls, whether it’s for recreational purposes or tournaments.

Can I clean pool balls in a dishwasher?

Although some of the pool balls can be cleaned using a dishwasher, you need to know that using this product can destroy the vibrant color and quality of the balls. Either the polyester resin or phenolic resin ball will significantly affect its look and use. It may seem like a simple way of cleaning the balls, but its damage can be permanent.

Reports show that using a dishwasher for cleaning a pool ball can harm the ball’s look and reliability. Sometimes even cleaning it smoothly can still destroy the material. With this, you must always be aware of its disadvantage and like others, a dishwasher is for washing the dishes and not the other material like a pool ball.

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