Can You Clean Golf Balls With Hydrogen Peroxide, Bleach, Or Vinegar? 

Can You Clean Golf Balls With Hydrogen Peroxide, Bleach, Or Vinegar? 

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The one golf accessory that is often ignored and yet essential for the game of golf is the golf ball. Undeniably, golf balls go through a lot on the golf course, from being hit continuously by the club, going through mud, grass, and water to being lost.

While golf clubs and associations spend tons of money on keeping their golf courses clean, it’s pretty common to find your ball muddied after a satisfying round of golf. In fact, if you take a stroll around your local golf course, you’re likely going to find hidden pockets of mud that will ultimately make your golf balls dirty.

So how do you keep your golf balls clean?

You can clean golf balls in many different ways including cleaning them with hydrogen peroxide, bleach, and vinegar.

It’s crucial to find the best possible way to clean your golf balls. So, in today’s post, I will share a comprehensive guide on how to clean your golf ball using any of these three methods.

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Why Should You Clean Golf Balls?

Before I start discussing the best cleaning method, it’s essential to give you reasons why you should clean your golf balls. There are a few necessary things you need to remember in this regard. 

These are:

● On the course, golfers are required to play the ball in the state that it’s in. There is no time to clean the balls during the game, so it’s essential to clean your balls before the game begins.

● During the game, your golf ball comes into contact with all sorts of things on the course.

● Golf balls are explicitly designed with a surface that enhances performance on the course. So anything that sticks on the surface can reduce playability.

So always remember that a dirty golf ball can negatively affect your game and the shots you play. Additionally, a dirty golf ball will also affect how much distance you cover, the golf ball’s spin, and visibility level.

If you find that your golf ball has landed in the muck, will wiping it with a dry or a wet towel be enough? It can be, but it’s always best to clean your golf balls correctly and thoroughly.

How To Properly Clean Golf Balls

Before you embark on the cleaning journey, you will require a few materials. Below is a list of some of the things you’ll need to clean your golf balls properly:

● Liquid dishwashing soap: This is one of the most common cleaning detergents you’ll find in your home. It is gentle and one of the safest detergents to use on your golf balls.

● White Vinegar: Although acidic white vinegar is a relatively harmless but effective cleaning agent. It is an affordable and environment-friendly option.

● Bleach: Soaking dirty and discolored golf balls in bleach can thoroughly disinfect them and leave the golf ball looking whiter and brighter.

● Household Ammonia: Ammonia is a standard golf ball cleaner that can break down stubborn stains and remove dirt from the surface of the golf balls.

● Cleaning Equipment: You’ll need several abrasive cleaning items that you can use to gently scrub away dirt from the surface of the balls. Use specific soft-bristled brushes and nylon scrubbers; otherwise, you can damage your ball.

● Water and washing container.

● Acetone: It’s a cleaning solution that can remove severe marks and stains.

● Microfiber cloths: You can use microfiber cloths to dry your golf balls.

Golf Ball Cleaning Instructions

As I’ve mentioned before, there are three main methods for cleaning golf balls. You can choose any one of the methods that suit your needs. 

Let’s take a look at the following step by step process:  

Dishwashing method

A dishwasher is an amazing machine that you can use to wash your golf balls easily. The machine cycle is exceptionally gentle and can be an effective way to clean your balls.

However, before you throw in a load full of dirty golf balls in your dishwasher, ensure that you pre-clean them from dirt and any visible debris. I advise that you rinse them under some water first to get rid of this superficial dirt.

Step 1:  Pour a good amount of dishwashing liquid into the detergent compartment of your machine.

Step 2: Place the golf balls into the dishes compartment.

Step 3: Make sure that you place the temperature on medium to hot and keep the dishwasher on a presoak mode for about three minutes so that the golf balls get a good soak. Now allow the cycle to finish and take the balls out of the dishwasher.

If you notice that the balls are still dirty, you can repeat the process. Using the dishwasher is a suitable method if your golf balls are too filthy.

Soaking Method

This is perhaps one of the simplest methods on my list. All it requires is a bucket, tub, or kitchen sink so you can soak your balls.

Step 1: Pour some lukewarm water into your bucket or container of choice.  

Step 2: Pick any cleaning solution you like, whether white vinegar or ammonia; either one can clean the balls thoroughly.

Step 3: Pour your cleaning solution into the water and allow the balls to soak for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Step 4: Transfer the golf balls into another container with clean water and rinse them thoroughly. If there is still any visible dirt, use a brush to remove the dirt on the golf balls.

Step 5: Rinse the golf balls and towel dry them using microfiber cloths. To ensure that your golf balls are completely dry, you can sun dry them for a few minutes.

Scrubbing Method

How do you clean golf balls that have been lost for a while or got stuck either in ponds or mud pockets? Balls that have been stuck in the dirt for a while tend to have caked mud, slime, and other sticky substances. 

The scrubbing method is perfect for getting the stubborn dirt off the surface.

Step 1: Use a water hose to loosen the dirt from the surface of the ball.

Step 2: Use a scrubber of your choice to remove any stuck particles. Make sure that you’re gentle so that you don’t damage the protective layer of your golf ball.

Step 3: Rinse the balls and soak them in a container with water and your cleaning solution for an hour.

Step 4: Rinse the golf balls in clean water, and towel dry them. Allow the balls to sun dry for a couple of minutes.

Stain Removal Method

It’s pretty common to find golf balls that are marked with paint or permanent markers for identification. This can make the golf balls look discolored and cause some nasty stains due to constant exposure to external elements.

These golf balls will need extra TLC and treatment to get them looking clean and new again. So depending on the kind and amount of stain on the ball, you can use the following steps:

Step 1: Dip a piece of cotton in acetone and rub it thoroughly on the stains. Let the solution sit for a minute or two, and then use a scrubber to brush off the stains.

Step 2: Rinse the balls with clean water and pat dry with microfiber cloths.

Step 3: Leave the golf balls to sun dry before storing them.  

Using Hydrogen Peroxide To Clean Golf Balls 

Hydrogen peroxide is a very effective way to clean golf balls. It kills any bacteria that may be on the ball, and that’s why I recommend using it, especially if you don’t want to use bleach. It is odorless, color-safe, and non-toxic. 

Ensure that you use gloves because the detergent may irritate the skin.


● Mix 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide with 2 cups of water (distilled if possible)

● Soak the golf balls for 10 to 15 minutes

● While wearing gloves, use a soft brush to scrub the golf balls.

● Rinse the balls with clean water and allow them to dry.

Some Pro Tips For Cleaning Golf Balls 

I’ve gathered a few pro tips you should consider so that you find the best way to clean golf balls. These tips will make cleaning easier and faster.

● Soaking your golf balls in lukewarm water is an excellent first step when cleaning. Just remember not to soak your balls for too long, as this may damage the protective layer of the ball.

● Remember to sort out the balls according to how dirty they are. This is because all the balls may not need the same cleaning process.

● Try not to leave your golf balls unclean for long periods. Cleaning dirty balls frequently will make the process faster compared to balls that are caked with dirt.

● Try not to use acidic detergents frequently as frequent use could damage the golf balls.

● Always use gloves when using hydrogen peroxide, acetone, or any other harsh chemical to prevent damaging your hands.

● Try not to clean your golf balls on the green as there are strict rules against this, and you could be punished for it.

Final Thoughts

In this article, I’ve gone through some of the methods you can use to clean golf balls properly. The above cleaning processes are easy to follow, so you should do them as frequently as possible. 

Now you can enjoy your next round of golf with spotless, clean, functional golf balls.

Matt R.

Hello, My name is Matt and I'm the founder of Just Golfin'. This site is all about one thing... GOLFING!

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