Surf Wax | How to Remove Old Wax from Your BoardHere's a sneaky little trick to remove all your old surfboard wax from your board and make your board look new again!

Chad Schwab

2 years ago in Gap Year

So the swell in Cape Town has backed off temporarily and so I thought it was the perfect opportunity to finally clear the surf wax off of my new stick. I got back from a trip with Ticket to Ride in Mozambique a month ago and the tropical wax on my deck wasn’t working too well in the Cape’s icy Atlantic, my cold water wax wasn’t binding with my now ‘base’ coat of tropical wax so I’ve just decided to start fresh. A friend and colleague of mine Ryan Ribbink actually shared this bit of wisdom with me whilst in Durban, I’d done it before and was amazed at how well it works, so now I am passing this bit of wisdom on to you!

Now there are many reasons as to why you might want to remove the wax from your surfboard and there are multiple ways to do so, this for me is just the best way for the everyday surfer who doesn’t have access to a surfboard factory or workspace that can handle chemicals that would clear wax off quicker.

So there are 3 ingredients necessary for this Gandalf-like wizardry I’m about to show you, 2 of which are cheap and very accessible, namely; flour (you read that right don’t worry) and any form of tissue paper/toilet roll (it can be any type of flour don’t stress over whether or not it self raises). The 3rd ingredient necessary will depend on where you are in the world and what kind of climate you have. Heat from the sun!

I’m from South Africa so this is not a problem for me however for you it may be so here are some alternatives:

  • Use your girlfriends, wives, sisters or moms hairdryer
  • Place your board below a heat lamp/s

The idea is you leave your surfboard out in the sun long enough for the wax to melt, wait for it to start sweating and almost liquidise for best results.


Now you add your flour. Sprinkle generously over the melted wax and level the flour out using your Tissue paper so you have it evenly spread over the area you wish to clean. Wait for the flour to settle into the melted wax.

After the flour has settled into the wax you can start using your tissue paper to remove the waxy flour from the surfboard. It wont magically fall off you will need to apply some pressure especially in places where the wax is thicker

In an effort to make as less mess as possible I work from one side of the board to the other collecting all the waxy flour in a focal area, once too much has built up I dispose of it in a plastic rubbish bag.

The reason I love this method over any other I’ve used before is because it is less strenuous and time constraining, I remember scraping away with wax scrapers trying to remove wax from my board only to spill it all over myself and the surrounding area which meant more cleaning after the cleaning?!? This brings me to my next point, it is surprisingly cleanly! The flour binds to the melted wax and turns into a crumbly, flakey, non-stick material that is so easy to sweep up afterwards, incredible! Lastly and possibly the greatest part of this method is that because flour has a grainy texture as you remove the wax you polish your surfboard simultaneously and when complete your board looks as good as new on the surface, smooth and ready for a new layer of wax!

I hope you found this helpful, let me know how it goes in the comments section and spread the love by sharing this with your buddies!

Happy Surfing!

Luke Geldenhuys, Trip Leader in South Africa