Everything You Need to Know about Skateboard Bearings

Standing on a longboard

Skateboard bearings are the most important part of a skateboard. They allow the wheels to spin freely and are one of the most important factors when it comes to your board’s speed and acceleration.

Your skateboard experience will only ever be as good as your bearings. That’s why you need to learn how to install, remove, clean, and maintain your bearings. You also need to know when it’s time to set aside your old bearings for an upgrade.

Pro Tip: Skateboard bearings are the cheapest component to replace and upgrade. However, once you start looking at the top-of-the-line models, things can get really pricey.

How To Install & Remove Skateboard Bearings

How To Install Skateboard Bearings:

Step 1: Place your wheels on a flat surface and insert the first bearing into one of them. If there is only a shield on one side, make sure the bearing shields face outward. If you don’t have a skate tool, use the axle on your trucks to press the bearings into place.

Step 2: If you have spacer bearings, place them in the center of your wheel’s bearings. Spacers prevent damage from jarring when skateboarding. After that, install a second bearing on the other side of your wheel.

Step 3: Repeat this for each one of your wheels.

Step 4: Install a washer, followed by the wheel, then another washer. Then you can put on the axle bolt and tighten it just enough so that your wheel does not move up and down on the axle but still spins freely.

How To Remove Skateboard Bearings:

Step 1: Remove all four of the axle nuts using a skate tool or a 13mm wrench. Keep any washers you remove during this operation in a secure location, such as a Tupperware container or a plastic bag.

Step 2: Using the leverage from the axle, gently pry the wheel down and pull out the bearing.

Step 3: Repeat steps one and two for each of the wheels.

Clean & Maintain Skateboard Bearings

What you need to clean your bearings:

  • A razor blade or pin (for popping off the bearing shields)
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • A jar to soak your bearings in
  • Paper towel or a rag
  • Bones speed cream
  • Skate tool

Step 1: Remove the wheels from their bearings, then detach the shields from the bearings.

Step 2: Soak the bearings and shields in a cup containing alcohol for 30 minutes or longer.

Step 3: Use your paper towel or rag to clean the bearings. You can also use Q-tips to get in there. Another good tip is to use the paper towel, rag, and/ or Q-tips and then close the bearings in a Tupperware container (inside the alcohol) and shake vigorously. Do this a few times until they look new. 

Step 4: Allow the bearings to dry.

Step 5: Wipe off the Bones Speed Cream, or whatever lubricant you prefer, with a cloth.

Step 6: Replace the bearing shields and re-install your wheels’ bearings.

Here’s a more in-depth article on how to clean and maintain your bearings.

Best Inexpensive Skateboard Bearings

The best affordable skateboard bearings are going to be your typical Bones Reds. They’re fast, well-made, and inexpensive. However, they also dominate some of the top-of-the-line bearings.

Most skateboarders have heard of Bones Reds. They’re literally THE bearing to use. But looking past their incredible $20 bearings, they also carry bearings that cost into the hundreds.

Bones is and has always been one of the dominators in the skateboard industry and it goes without question.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions that you want to be answered, please inquire at [email protected]

How Many Bearings Are On A Skateboard?

A skateboard uses a total of eight bearings, two in each wheel. A bearing is placed inside both sides of the wheel, then washers are put on both sides of the wheel while it’s placed on the truck.

How Long Should Bearings Last?

Skateboard bearings have a lifespan of 1 to 2 years if properly cared for and maintained. Bearings become worn out over time and get gunked up inside from dirt and debris. They can also rust if they get wet. Although bearings tend to last 1 to 2 years, they will not last long at all if you get them wet or do not take the time and care to clean and maintain them.

Can Skateboard Bearings Get Wet?

Definitely not!

Bearings will rust very quickly. Once they rust they’re no longer good and you’ll need to get replacements. That being said, skateboards are not meant for water. Water will quickly degrade all pieces of the skateboard besides the wheels and bushings.

Do All Skateboard Bearings Fit All Wheels?

Yes. All skateboard, cruiser, and longboard bearings are a standardized size. However, they can vary in ABEC rating and material. For instance, some of the best skateboard bearings are now made with ceramic ball bearings instead of steel.


Skateboard bearings allow the wheels to spin freely on your skateboard. If you’re looking for some of the best affordable bearings, look no further than Bones Reds. They are very high-quality and inexpensively priced.

Make sure that if you ever need new ones or want to maintain them, take a look at this guide! It’s extremely helpful in maintaining, cleaning, and replacing old/worn-out bearings with brand new ones so they’ll last longer.

If you have any questions please send us an email! Thanks again for reading our blog post!

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