How to Clean a Pool Table: A Step by Step Guide

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How to Clean a Pool Table: A Step by Step Guide

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Many venues include a pool table as part of both their entertainment and decorative design. Bars and pubs aren’t the only place you can find one more pool tables. These beautiful felt-topped tables can be found in dance halls, community centres, clubhouses, summer camps, youth centres, college dorms, and private dens. You might find an old pool table near the arcade in a large movie theater or a pristine pool table in a rented event room.

The question is: how do you keep it clean? Pool is an active game often played by people who are drinking (beer or soda depending on the party), snacking, and carousing about. Pool tables can get crumbs on them, and the felt can get stiff or scuffed if you don’t know the proper care. Fortunately, while cleaning a pool table is careful work, it’s also easy to do if you know how.


Pool Table Cleaning Basics

Pool tables should be cleaned every few times they are played with, whenever it looks dirty, or three times a year, depending on the frequency of use. Pool table felt should be changed ever 3-10 years depending on frequency of use.  The best way to clean a pool table is to gently vacuum and brush the felt while keeping the surface smooth and soft.


  • Pool table brushes
  • Vacuum with brush head and indirect suction
  • Damp and dry microfiber cloths
  • Towel or paper towels
  • Cold water, white vinegar
  • Pool table spray
  • Citrus wood polish


Step 1: Vacuum the Crumbs from Your Pool Table

With the right attachment vacuuming your pool table is one of the best ways to  remove crumbs and loose chalk from the night’s activities. Use brush attachment on the hose of your vacuum to pick up debris using straight-line gentle strokes to avoid wrinkling the felt.


Step 2: Brush Your Pool Table Felt

The next step is to use your pool table brushes to brush the felt. The brushes will help you both to remove any lodged crumbs and to freshen up the felt so that it is both smooth and fuzzy – ideal for playing pool.  Only use pool table brushes, never a substitute.

Use straight, gentle strokes to avoid stretching or wrinkling the fabric. It is also recommended that you brush from the centre to the edge. Sweep debris into the pockets, then use your vacuum with no attachment to suck up the pocket debris. When you’re done, clean the edge with the rail brush to get crumbs out of those carpeted corners.


Step 3: Vacuum Out the Pockets

Since the easiest way to get debris off a pool table is to push it, we push the debris down into the pockets. Then use a vacuum hose attachment to clean out the pockets, nice and easy.


Step 4: Remove Chalk Marks with a Pool Table Spray

If there are still chalk marks on your table after using the brush, you can use a pool table spray and a dry microfiber cloth.

This step is very easy. Simply spray the pool table cleaner over the entire surface of your felt. Using a dry microfiber cloth, gently dust away both the cleaner and any remaining chalk dust.


Step 5: Clean and Polish Your Pool Table’s Wood

Cleaning your pool table wood is simple and fast. You can easily wipe away handprints and chalk dust just with a damp towel and citrus-based wood polish.  Start with a lightly damp cloth. Wet your cloth and then ring it so that the cloth does not drip at all. Press it firmly to the wood frame and legs of your pool table and wipe clean. You can use a light vinegar mix or surface cleaner to clear away stubborn smudges for streak-free shine.

Every few times you clean the wood of your pool table, also apply a citrus-based wood polish. This will enrich your wood and help it maintain a beautiful scratch-free shine to compliment your well-kept pool table felt.



Step 5: Deep Cleaning – How Do You Get Stains Out of Pool Table Felt?

Finally, you may have gotten here after finding an upsetting spill or stain on your pool table. Getting stains out of pool table felt can be hard, but is possible. Start with a damp cloth and always, always, always blot. Never rub.

Start with a mix of cold water and vinegar. Dip a clean cloth and begin blotting. Blot from the outside in to saturate the stain without encouraging it to spread. Do not use hot or warm water, as this can damage the felt. Rinse the cloth and keep going until the stain is removed or well-faded. It can take patience and time, but most stains will typically come out with this method. Never rub or scrub the pool felt, only blot and dab.

If all else fails, try a table cleaning spray beyond the chalk banisher. An approved cleaning chemical may become necessary to restore your space.


Keeping a clean pool table is a rewarding task that will soon become second nature. Lightly brush your pool table after each party or every six months of light home use. Regular cleaning can help you protect your pool table and keep the felt fibers in good condition, even in the face of drink spills and dirty hands during a night of fun with good friends. For more great cleaning tips from your local pros, contact Regional Services today!

Regional Services

Regional Services

Regional Services are an experienced commercial and office cleaning company based in London. Regional Services are an award winning and fully accredited cleaning company who provide a full range of facility management services and expertise including cleaning, maintenance, waste removal, pest control, gardening and more.


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