What Solvent Is Used to Install Golf Club Grips?

Golf professionals recommend you change your grips every six months when you play golf regularly.

If you have the full complement of 14 golf clubs in your bag, you could find grip replacement rather expensive -- roughly $84 to $140 if you replace all of your grips. You can save a few dollars by doing the job yourself, but you will need a solvent so the grips slide on.

Commercial Grip Solvent

The process of replacing golf grips includes placing tape on the golf shaft, and then lubricating the tape with solvent in order to deactivate the tape's adhesive.

The solvent mixes with the adhesive, creating a slippery surface that allows the grip to slide over the tape. Commercial grip solvent, which is manufactured specifically for this purpose, proves to be the most effective solvent. This type of solvent also dries quickly, allowing you to use your clubs in as little as an hour, depending on how much solvent you use.

Mineral Spirits

You can also use mineral spirits, found in any hardware store, to install your golf grips. This solvent is inexpensive, but if you use it indoors, you should be sure you have proper ventilation.

Nail Polish Remover

Nail polish remover with acetone isn't the first thing you think of when installing golf grips, but it's ability to deactivate the adhesive on the tape makes it a good choice. While not quite as potent as commercial grip solution or even mineral spirits, nail polish remover has fewer fumes and doesn't require the same level of ventilation. It can be a more expensive option, but if you are replacing only one or two grips, this solvent will do the job.


In an effort to be more environmentally friendly, the golf industry has developed water-based solutions, which require the use of water-activated grip tape. Plain water and water-soap mixtures also activate this type of grip tape. Water is a great solution when working in an area that doesn't provide proper ventilation. The drying time when using water is almost doubled, but after the water evaporates, the grips will securely bond to the tape.