How to Clean Football Shoulder Pads

American Football and Helmet on the Field

Football shoulder pads require a professional cleaning service, once the season ends, to make sure they're free from bacteria and safe to use again. Sports teams or leagues generally perform this action. However, that doesn’t help keep pads from accumulating dangerous bacteria – and unpleasant odors – while the practices and games are under way. Proper care is essential to keep the pads clean and safe.

Caring For The Pads

When in-season, take shoulder pads out of your bag after every game and practice. Place them in a cool place and allow them to dry. This helps keep microbes from growing and prevents the odors that occur if they’re stored while damp. If dirt or stains must be removed from the pads, wipe them with a wet rag and then use a dry rag to clean the pads off. Deeper stains can be treated with a disinfectant, but the product used must be safe for plastic to avoid damaging the pads. Abrasive cleaners, for example, should be avoided.