Bowling Ball Cleaner and Polishers

Bowling Ball Cleaner and Polishers

Bowling may seem like a sport that does not require the player to buy much equipment, but there are actually quite a few items needed to participate. These items include shoes, bowling balls, a bag, bowling ball cleaner, and a polisher. Below we will discuss what to consider when looking for your own cleaners and polishers.

What are bowling ball cleaners and polishers used for?

Bowling ball cleaners and polishers serve a dual purpose. The first, and most obvious, is that they remove the grime from bowling balls. In the sport of bowling, a heavy ball (usually between six and 16 pounds) is thrown down a lane towards a row of bowling pins. Rolling across the floor causes bowling balls to collect dirt and lose their shine, both of which can be fixed with the right products.

The second purpose of cleaners and polishers is to restore the surface of a bowling ball. A bowling lane is 60 feet long. When a ball is constantly rolled down such a long distance, there are lots of opportunities for it to become nicked and scratched from friction due to impact with the lane. A polisher removes this friction from the surface of the bowling ball and makes it easier to glide down the lane.

Things To Consider

When looking for bowling ball cleaner or polisher, you'll want to consider the following:

  • How often do you go bowling?
  • What is your bowling ball made of?
  • Do you play competitively or for leisure?
  • How many bowling balls will you need to clean?
  • How much money do you have to spend on a bowling ball cleaner or polisher?


There are a few different ways to clean a bowling ball. You can use an all purpose cleaner, a polish, or wipes but each type of equipment has its merits and distinctive qualities.

All Purpose Bowling Ball Cleaner

All Purpose Bowling Ball Cleaner

All purpose bowling ball cleaner is a common tool for cleaning bowling balls. This type of cleaner is good for removing the dirt and oil that accumulates from the bowling lane. It typically comes in a spray bottle and differs from polishers by focusing on cleaning rather than altering the surface of a bowling ball.

Bowling Ball Polish

Bowling Ball Polish

Bowling ball polish is typically sold in a squeeze bottle and, like all purpose cleaners, would need to be accompanied by some sort of towel to actually work the product into the bowling ball. Unlike bowling ball wipes and cleaners, polishers are more so about improving performance by reducing friction rather than cleaning the ball.

Bowling Ball Wipes

Bowling Ball Wipes

Bowling ball wipes may be the most convenient of the three products listed here because they are ready for use right out of the package. These disposable wipes already have cleaner infused into them so, while they serve the same purpose as bowling ball cleaners, they eliminate the need for an additional towel to use the product.


There are plenty of brands to choose from when it comes to finding your bowling ball cleaner or polisher of choice. Storm, Brunswick, and Ebonite are some of the most popular.

  • Storm: Storm Bowling is a great destination for all purpose cleaners and polishers which can be ordered online.
  • Brunswick: Brunswick is the only one of these brands to sell bowling ball wipes in addition to cleaners and polishers.
  • Ebonite: Ebonite is most popular for its polishers, but also sells all purpose cleaner. Based in Kentucky, this brand was recently acquired by Brunswick.


Of course there are some important considerations to be made when it comes to finding your ideal bowling ball polisher or cleaner. Three of the most important are durability, cost, and effectiveness.


Most bowling ball cleaners and polishers come in a relatively compact plastic bottle that can easily fit in a bowling bag. The amount of time that any cleaner or polisher lasts depends on the user and how often they bowl; however, since bowling ball wipes are single use they likely won’t last as long as an all purpose cleaner or polisher.


As far as bowling equipment goes, cleaners and polishers are relatively inexpensive. A reasonable price range for an eight ounce bottle of cleaner is anywhere from $8 to $15. The price increases for larger sizes but most brands stay within that price range for bottles eight ounces or smaller.


All purpose cleaners and wipes remove dirt and debris from the bowling ball. Polishers aren’t really for cleaning so they’re not effective in that sense, but they do reduce friction and bring shine to the bowling ball. An all purpose cleaner is probably the most effective at cleaning since you can control the amount you use and find the best towel for your needs.


How much does bowling ball cleaner cost?

An eight ounce bottle of cleaner costs between $8 and $15 while you may pay the same amount for a four ounce bottle of polish. A larger bottle of cleaner (32 ounces and up) costs upwards of $30 depending on the size and brand.

What substances will bowling ball cleaners remove from the ball?

Bowling ball cleaners remove dirt, debris, and some of the oil that may have accumulated from constant touching or contact with the bowling lane. They cannot remove all oil or wear and tear that results from an aging bowling ball.

What are the benefits of using bowling ball cleaners and polishers?

Using bowling ball cleaners and polishers can increase the lifespan of your bowling ball. The first step to being able to use your equipment for a long time is to take care of it. By cleaning and polishing your ball regularly, you ensure that you are taking the necessary precautions to keep from having to replace your bowling ball too soon. This can also improve your game by giving you more control over how the ball moves down the bowling lane.