Detailed Guide Maintaining a Spinning reel for Beginners

A Spinning reel can last for years or even decades if you properly maintain a high-quality one.

If you’re one of the anglers that do not maintain their equipment, even the best model will eventually fail. This could create a malfunction at a vital time.

The simplest maintaining way is to regularly check and repair your reels with the right equipment and oil. If you make it a practice to do this regularly, your equipment will not let you down when it matters most.

We’ll walk you through the critical stages for maintaining your spinning reel for the best performance in this guide.

Tips for fundamental spinning reel maintenance

If you’re fishing in freshwater, you should perform essential maintenance on your spinning reel at least once a week or after every second fishing trip if you’re fishing in saltwater. In any case, once you get into cleaning up your tackle, it will become second nature.

Some fundamental maintenance advice for your reels:

Regularly re-spool your spinning reel: depending on the line you use and how often you fish, you should re-spool your spinning reel as often as once a month.

Clean the exterior with a spray bottle: if your reel gets muddy or exposed to saltwater, Lightly spraying a little water and wiping it off with a mushy cloth is a fantastic method to clean the outer parts. However, make sure you spray a light mist rather than a powerful jet of water since this might force dirt and salt into the interior of your reel.

Loosen the drag: to relieve strain on the drag washers after each fishing excursion, which will extend their lifetime. It also prevents the drag mechanism from becoming trapped in an intimate setting, which is quite inconvenient when you try to loosen it while fishing.

Make sure that are tight all the screws: a loose screw can fall out when fighting a fish, creating severe issues. Also, many spinning reels have a handle that can be screwed on or off, and you’ll want to double-check that it’s securely fastened unless you fold the handle for storage.

Protect the reel from direct sunlight: wrap it in a cloth or an old sock, then put it in a cool place out of direct sunlight.

Do not disassemble your reel completely: while it may be tempting to open up your spinning reel and take it apart completely. It is not a good idea because putting it back together can be difficult, especially if you’ve never done it before. If you absolutely must disassemble it, make sure you have the schematics on hand to guide you through the process. You should arrange the pieces in the exact way you took them out so that you can set them back together in the correct way.

We’ll go over some of the spinning reel parts that can be easily disassembled for cleaning and quickly reassembled in the sections below. The spool, handle, and bail arm should all be cleaned as general cleaning.

Now let’s check how to properly clean and lubricate your spinning reel.

Steps for cleaning a spinning reel?

The following step-by-step guide will show how to clean a spinning reel:

  • Mist your reel with water and use a paper towel or soft cloth to clean away any debris or salt deposits on the surface.
  • Remove the spool from the shaft by unscrewing the cover on top of it.
  • Clean the inside the top of the spool and the drag washers inside the cap. To remove sand, dirt, or debris.
  • Pour a few droplets of oil into the spool shaft’s base, then turn the handle to move the shaft up and down to uniformly spread the oil.
  • Replace the spool on the shaft and tighten the cover.
  • Remove the handle and clean any sand or dirt from the various components.
  • Lubricate the handle part that goes into the body with a drop of oil (to prevent it from getting stuck).
  • Remove the bail roller and unscrew the bail arm from the rotor.
  • Look for dirt or damage on the roller guide and clean it with a Q-tip soaked in Clenzoil.
  • Reassemble the bail arm and handle, then wash the entire frame with a Clenzoil-sprayed towel.

This isn’t a comprehensive cleaning, but it’ll suffice for essential spinning reel maintenance. We’ve discovered that dismantling your reel is rarely necessary, and this simple technique will keep it functioning properly for years.

What are some options for cleaning your spinning reel?

It’s critical to use the correct oil, grease, and lubricants, as utilizing the wrong ones can lead to new issues rather than solving old ones. Using a spinning reel repair kit developed explicitly is the simplest method. These kits are available from most reel manufacturers, and you can obtain one from the same brand as the reel you’re using.

The necessary oil for lubricating the ball bearings, reel shaft, handle, and the correct grease for the gears are the most crucial pieces of the kit. You can put together a kit yourself once you’ve become more comfortable with all components.

Use these fundamental tools in addition to the maintenance kit:

  • Q-tips
  • Soapy water
  • A soft cloth
  • A paper towel
  • A small flat head screwdriver
  • A small Phillips head screwdriver
  • A soft toothbrush

Finally, rub the exterior of your reel with Clenzoil to clean it while also adding a protective film to the surface.

Is it suitable to use WD40 on spinning reels?

WD40 is a degreaser that breaks down oil, grease, and lubricants. Hence it should not be used on a fishing reel. If you spray WD-40 inside the reel body, it will remove the necessary oil and grease for proper operation. Furthermore, WD40 acts as a lubricant on the drag washers, preventing them from performing correctly.

Use other products specifically designed for the task, such as Clenzoil, instead of WD40. These chemicals clean and add a protective coating that helps prevent corrosion.

What is the way to clean a spinning reel after using saltwater?

With a reel using sealing technology, you can apply the same basic cleaning process as stated above. The sealing technology prevents corrosive saltwater from adhering to the chassis body and rotor housing, protecting gears and bearings from corrosion. The Penn Spinfisher and Torque II are good examples of this.

Pay particular attention to any sand or salt residues when removing salt buildup from a spinning reel, and clean them off with a soft towel or Q-tip doused with Clenzoil. However, if your model doesn’t have sealing technology, salt water or sand may get inside the reel body, requiring you to disassemble the entire reel to clean the internal components. You can also hire a professional reel cleaning service to take care of this.

What’s the best way to lubricate a spinning reel?

When lubricating your spinning reel, use a modest amount of oil, as less oil is more when lubrication. Also, remember to just oil the components that need to be oiled. The spool shaft and ball bearings are examples of this.

You can also rub oil into the base of the handle knob to assist it in turning smooth as you twist the handle. So, the handle section that goes into the body helps prevent it from getting stuck. Don’t use any oil on the gears, and use grease instead.

What kind of oil should you use to maintain your spinning reels?

Always use oils explicitly made for spinning reels to lubricate them. While using the same oil on different kinds of spinning reels is fine, stay away from oils that aren’t designed for this purpose. Vegetable oil, olive oil, and machine oil are examples of the latter. Machine oil is too thick and dense for use in fishing reels, and it will cause your reel parts to move more slowly. The best fishing reel oil is light and thin, with low viscosity. This makes the retrieval process go more smoothly.

How often should your spinning reel be oiled?

If you go fishing frequently, oil your spinning reel every second or third time (or at least once a week). If you don’t often fish, once a month is enough. However, even if you haven’t fished in months, your reel still has to be oiled before your next trip, as the oil degrades with time.

Read more: Best Spinning Reels Under $50 (Top 7 Fishing Spinning Reel)