Cleaning a fishing a reel after a fishing session shouldn’t be difficult but definitely mandatory to prolong the life of the reel. Especially when it comes to marine fishing. Saltwater from the ocean over time can corrode the mechanicals if it isn’t well maintained and cleaned.
Don’t be caught out on the water with a seized up reel due to maintenance. I’ve put together a simple 5 step process to help clean and maintain your fishing reel after every fishing session.
Equipment required for reel maintenance
- A bucket filled with lukewarm soapy water.
- Paper towels.
- Sponge x1.
- Microfibre cloth x2.
- Reel maintenance oil x1.
- Tackle guard reel protectant spray x1.
Step 1 – Tighten the drag and soap down the reel.
Firstly by using a paper towel or a clean rag wipe away any debris, gunk, and sand of the reel body. Once the reel has been wiped down we’ll tighten the drag knob securely to prevent any water seeping into the mechanical parts.
Fill a bucket with lukewarm fresh soapy water and use a clean sponge to gently wash the reel body.
Step 2 – Rinse with freshwater and wipe down the reel thoroughly.
Once the reel body has been soaped we’ll then rinse with fresh clean water. Avoid directly running water over the drag knob. After rinsing use a clean dry cloth to wipe dry and free of any moisture.
Step 3 – Clean the spool.
Once the reel body has been wiped down, we’ll undo the spool and wipe any moisture underneath. At this point, I like to also wipe the fishing line clean.
Step 4 – Lubricate all mechanicals.
Before placing the spool back onto the reel body we’ll lightly oil the shaft, handle, bail arm and springs. Remember to wipe away any excess oil.
Finish off by spraying a reel protectant on a clean cloth and wipe the reel down. Reel protectants leave a film over the reel preventing corrosion and displacing any moisture.
Step 5 – Assemble and store away.
Assemble the spool back onto the reel and leave the drag loose. This will avoid pressure on the drag washers. Finally, store rod and reel away in a cool dry place while not in use.