What Causes Burn Marks On A Pool Table?

Owning a pool table at home can creates fun experiences for you and your family. Over time, however, you may notice the presence of white marks across your pool table. If you're wondering what caused those, then worry not, as we did our due research on the matter.

The white marks that are visible on top of your pool table are burn marks. The reasons for these marks are:

  • Low-quality pool balls
  • Dirty pool balls
  • Accidental miscues

In this article, we will also discuss how to remove these burn marks from your pool table. Not only that, but we will also tell you how to prolong the lifespan of your pool table, among other topics. So, continue reading to find out more.

billiard cues pyramid multicolored pool balls, What Causes Burn Marks On A Pool Table?


What Causes Burn Marks On A Pool Table?

If it's your first time seeing burn marks on your pool table, then don't fret. It's a common sight to see on top of a regularly used pool table. And this section will tell you all about the causes of those marks and more.

Low-Quality Pool Balls

One of the main reasons why burn marks appear on top of your pool table is due to the use of low-quality balls. Specifically, pool balls made out of polyester resin are the cause.

That's because low-quality balls produce a lot of friction against the pool table's felt. Since the friction causes heat, it results in burn marks appearing.

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Dirty Pool Balls

Speaking of friction, dirty balls produce more friction than clean ones because of the accumulated dirt on the ball's surface.

Dust and dirt accumulation on the pool ball gives it an uneven surface, causing it to grind against the felt. It doesn't matter if the quality of your pool ball is high; if the surface isn't free from gunk, burn marks are inevitable.

Accidental Miscues

Another reason for the burn marks is when you're shooting the cue ball at a sharp angle. Depending on how much strength you put into the shot and the angle of the cue stick, it could result in the cue ball digging into the felt. When that happens, it leaves behind a burn mark on the felt.

The same happens if you miss the cue ball and grind the cue stick against the felt. Not only do you risk producing a burn mark on top of the pool table, but you could also rip the felt apart.

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How To Remove Burn Marks On A Pool Table?

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Removing burn marks from your pool table is an easier task than you might think. In this section, you will learn how to remove the burn marks in two ways.

Pool Table Brush

The first is through the use of a pool table brush. By lightly brushing against the rails of the pool table and on the felt, you can gather all the dust and dirt accumulated on the table. You can either scoop it out or use a vacuum.

Then, use a damp cloth to go over the feet of the poor table. If the burn marks do not disappear, you can use a solution made out of one part water and one part vinegar. Lightly dab a piece of cloth into the solution and gently rub it against the burn marks until they disappear.

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Spray Cleaners

If the burn marks are a bit more stubborn and the solution of vinegar and water is not enough, then consider using spray cleaners. Although a bit more expensive than a homemade solution, it gives immediate results.

First, you need to spray the whole table and not just the spot where the burn marks are. The solution will start to foam and bring up dust and dirt from the pool table to the surface.

Let this happen for at least half an hour before using a microfiber cloth to remove the foam from the table. Be gentle in doing so to avoid marring the felt.

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How To Prolong A Pool Table's Lifespan?

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Pool tables generally have a long lifespan. However, improper use and poor maintenance will shorten its lifespan severely. Here are some tips and tricks to help extend your pool table's lifespan for a long time.

Use High-Quality Pool Balls

Pool balls that are poor in quality will generate too much heat and leave a burn mark on the felt. Therefore, the best way to maintain your pool table is by using high-quality pool balls.

When using high-quality pool balls, they glide easily against the felt of the pool table. This results in a more free-flowing motion without much friction on the table.

Place A Cover Over The Table

A pool table with too much dust and dirt on its surface will cause it to become uneven. This causes friction to form much more frequently while reducing the quality of play on the table.

When you're not using your pool table at home, place a cover on top of it. This helps shield it from dust and dirt.

This also helps protect the table and the felt from direct sunlight. Too much exposure to the sun can cause discoloration to the felt and the wood of the pool table. And when that happens, it ruins the overall aesthetic.

Avoid Using Jewelry When Playing

It's best to remove jewelry on your hands or wrists while using the pool table. This is to avoid nicking the rails and the cue stick you're using.

In some cases, your bracelet or wristwatch can stick to the felt. When that happens, it can cause a tear in the cloth, which is a huge headache to deal with.

No Food And Drinks

One thing you should remember when playing on the pool table is to avoid putting food and drinks on top of it.

Food crumbs and other small particles will not only make the surface of the pool table uneven, but it will also attract ants and other insects. When that happens, they can damage the pool table by burrowing into the felt and the wood.

As for drinks, any spills can leave quite a messy stain on the felt. Some can be difficult to remove and leave a permanent discoloration on the felt.

Shoot Properly

If you want to extend your pool table's lifespan, properly playing the game is the best way to go about it. Avoid using forceful trick shots on the pool table, especially if you're inexperienced in such actions.

Small mistakes can lead to you applying too much force on the surface of the pool table, leading to a burn mark. The worst-case scenarios are that you can accidentally tear the felt of the pool table or break your cue stick in half.

Regularly Play A Game

When you own a pool table at home, it's always best to play a couple of games on it every week. Not only does it help you relax, but it helps extend the pool table's lifespan.

Pool tables not in use can cause the pockets and railing to shrink and warp due to inactivity. As a result, it will lead to an uneven surface and some components being slightly off from their original position.

How Long Do Pool Tables Last?

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A pool table's lifespan can usually last at least five years. Most pool tables at home have a lifespan of five to 20 years.

Those used in official tournaments have the same lifespan as the average pool table. Some antique pool tables can last hundreds of years, with some getting close to 300 years and counting.

How Much Does A Pool Table Cost?

Pool tables generally cost between $600 and $4,000, depending on their size, materials, and customizations. Some pool tables can even reach prices of $10,000 and more.

If you want to own a pool table at home, it's generally best to buy a standard one. Unless you're an enthusiast who wants a customized pool table for a family heirloom, getting a standard pool table would make the most sense economically.

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To Wrap Up

billiard cues pyramid multicolored pool balls

If you want to avoid leaving burn marks on your pool table, make sure to use high-quality balls to reduce the amount of friction on the felt. Keep your pool balls clean and free from dirt to reduce the risk of leaving burn marks. Finally, play with care and caution on the pool table to avoid accidental miscues that can leave a burn mark and tear into the felt.

Before you go, check out these other articles below:

Should You Tip Pool Table Installers?

How To Remove Pool Table Felt

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