Can You Put Golf Balls In The Washing Machine?

Who wants to sit there for hours hand washing their golf balls? Not us! Not anyone! In this article, we’ll be discussing how best to clean your golfing gear. Question is, can you put golf balls in the washing machine? It might sound like an easy option, but there are a few things you should keep in mind before rushing into things. 

That’s where we come in. We’ve written this article to help you be as prepared as possible before risking it. Golf balls can be expensive, but washing machines cost even more! We’ll tell you how to stay safe along the way. 

Can You Put Golf Balls in the Washing Machine? Our Tips 

So, you’re thinking of putting your golf balls in the washing machine. It’s definitely an option, but is it a good idea? In this section, we’ll explore a few key things to keep in mind if you do decide to use the washing machine when cleaning your golf balls. 

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Put Them In a Net Bag 

The first thing to mention here is that putting solid objects in your washing machine can cause damage quite easily. The cycling motion of your machine will cause your golf balls to fly around the chamber and collide with its metal barrel. 

This can: 

  • Cause a huge amount of noise 
  • Chip and dent your golf balls 
  • Damage your washing machine 

To minimize this damage, you might like to use a net bag to secure your golf balls slightly. This will at least dampen the collisions and make them less likely to occur. 

Wash Them Separately 

If you’re searching for ways to clean your golf balls online, chances are that they’re absolutely caked in dirt and grime. If this is the case, it’s definitely a good idea to wash them separately. The last thing you want is for the mud from the golf course to get onto your clothes – trust us! 

Wash the golf balls on a separate cycle for best results, if you use the washing machine at all that is. In our opinion, it might be best to consider other options instead.

You Might Damage Your Machine 

We’ve mentioned this already but we feel it’s necessary to reiterate – washing your golf balls in the washing machine might not be the best idea. Even if you secure them in a net bag, they can still cause significant damage to the washer if you’re not careful. 

This of course is determined by the size and make of your machine, but it’s generally not the safest option. If in doubt, consult with your manufacturer and see what they have to say about it. 

Want Our ‘Lazy Clean’ Advice? Use the Dishwasher

It’s all well and good saying that the washing machine isn’t safe, but how can you clean your golf balls the lazy way? Our advice is to use the dishwasher instead. The cleaning action of a dishwasher means that your golf balls can sit in a static position without being thrown around. 

As long as you don’t use a crazy strong soap or a particularly hot temperature setting, the dishwasher can be a reasonable option for cleaning your golf balls the lazy way. Just be sure to put your golf balls in on their own cycle – you don’t want mud getting on your dishes! 

How to Clean Golf Balls – Other Methods 

We know this might not be what you want to hear, but there are plenty of other ways to clean your golf balls too. They take a bit of extra effort but only marginally. In this section we’ll explore a few other methods you might like to try if you don’t mind risking your washing machine or dishwasher. 

Hot Water Soak 

Fill a bucket or similar container with hot water. Leave your golf balls there to soak for several minutes. In some cases, it’s as simple as that! Just wipe them down with a cloth or soft towel once you’ve removed them from the bucket and you should be good to go. 

In most cases, a bit of a soak in hot water is all you need to return your golf balls to their former glory. 


If you’re dealing with more stubborn stains, you can add a small amount of thin bleach to your water. If using very hot water, make sure you’re working in a well ventilated area to stay safe. Using gloves and even eye protection isn’t a bad idea either. 

Bleach can help to break down the more serious build-ups of dirt and grime. After a few minutes of soaking and a bit of a scrub, most balls will look good as new. 

Denture Tablets 

If you’re just cleaning one or two balls, pop them in a large glass with some denture cleaning tablets. The compounds and ‘fizzing action’ of denture cleaning products can also do a great job of lifting dirt and other blemishes from the surface of your golf balls. 

Give it a go if you’ve got a few tablets lying around the house. 

Oxalic Acid

Cleaning products containing oxalic acid are another good way to go here. While not strictly necessary to clean your golf balls, they can help to cut through more stubborn grass and mud stains and loosen debris from the surface of your golf balls. 

Dilute or apply your cleaning solution as per the manufacturer’s instructions. 


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A Wire Brush 

If you’ve got a wire brush lying around, it may be suitable for cleaning your golf balls. If you’re just dealing with a small build-up of mud, or indeed you’re scrubbing things down after a soak, a wire brush can be super helpful .

Just make sure that it’s not so hard that it scratches your golf balls! An old toothbrush can work well here too. 

Can You Put Golf Balls in the Washing Machine? Conclusion 

To sum up, you can put your golf balls in the washing machine but it’s not necessarily the best idea. The risk of damage to both the balls and the machine is not insignificant. It’s best to hand wash your golf balls where possible. 

If you’re feeling lazy, the dishwasher is a safer bet.

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