One of the most important pieces of equipment in table tennis is the ball. But, do table tennis balls wear out?
This is a question that many players may have. In this article, we will take a closer look at how table tennis balls are made, the factors that affect their lifespan, and what to look for when determining if a ball needs to be replaced. We will also explore different ways to extend the life of your table tennis balls, so you can keep playing your best game.
Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player, this article will give you valuable information to help you get the most out of your table tennis balls.
How long do table tennis balls last?
The lifespan of a table tennis ball is not measured in hours of play but rather in the shelf life of the ball. The shelf life of table tennis balls is typically around 3 to 6 months. This is because over time, the rubber in the balls can become hard, making them less bouncy and less responsive. This can negatively impact the performance of the ball and make it difficult to play with.
It’s important to note that, the actual lifespan of a table tennis ball can also vary depending on the storage conditions and the brand of the ball. Some manufacturers may have a longer shelf life than others, and it’s always recommended to check the expiry date on the packaging of the ball.
If you want to extend the lifespan for your tennis table ball, remember to store them in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and heat, as well as away from any chemicals or other substances that could damage the rubber.
Do table tennis balls wear out overtime?
During normal use, table tennis balls will not wear out over time, as long as they are stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and heat, as well as away from any chemicals or other substances that could damage the rubber. However, the performance of a table tennis ball can start to deteriorate if it is used excessively or if it is exposed to harsh conditions.
For example, if a table tennis ball is used frequently and is hit hard, it will start to lose its bounce and become less responsive over time. If a table tennis ball is exposed to high temperatures or humidity, the rubber will start to degrade, and the ball will lose its bounciness and responsiveness.
Note that table tennis balls may start to show signs of wear and tear, such as dents or scratches, even if they are still performing well. This is normal and does not necessarily indicate that the ball is worn out.
Do table tennis balls lose their bounce?
Table tennis balls will retain their bounce for a reasonable amount of time. However, the bounce of a table tennis ball can start to deteriorate if it is used excessively or if it is exposed to harsh conditions or if it is hit too hard.
This is because the rubber in the ball can become compressed or deformed from the impact. As a result, the ball will not rebound as high and will not be as responsive. Also, if the ball is exposed to high temperatures or humidity, the rubber will start to degrade, which can also cause the ball to lose its bounce.
It’s also worth noting that some table tennis balls are designed to have a higher or lower bounce than others, depending on the regulations of the game and tournament. The standard ball used in competition is called “40+” ball, which is specifically designed to maintain consistent bounce, speed and spin characteristics.
How to fix a dented tennis table ball
If a table tennis ball becomes dented, it can affect its performance and make it difficult to play with. Here are a few methods you can try to fix a dented table tennis ball:
If that doesn’t work, here are another two ways to fix your dented ball:
- Using a hairdryer: Heat the dent with a hairdryer for a few minutes. Once the ball is warm, press it against a hard surface to reshape it.
- Hot water: Put some water into a bowl and microwave it for about 30 seconds at maximum temperature. Then put the tennis ball inside the bowl and let it sit there for 5 minutes. After this time has passed, take the ball out of the bowl and see if the dent has gone away. Boiling the ball is a good way especially if you have more than one dented ball.
- Using a steam iron: Hold the ball over a steam iron for a few seconds to soften the rubber. Then press it against a hard surface to reshape it.
- Using a vacuum cleaner: Place the ball inside a plastic bag and seal it. Use the vacuum cleaner to suck out the air and create a vacuum. The ball will expand and reshape.
- Using a press: Place the ball in a press and apply pressure to reshape it.
These methods can help to reshape a dented table tennis ball, but it’s important to note that they may not restore the ball to its original condition. In most cases, the ball will be usable but it may not have the same level of bounce or responsiveness as a new one.
It’s always recommended to have a set of spare balls handy, especially if you play regularly and the balls are used frequently.
Is there a difference between an orange and white tennis table ball?
There is no difference in performance between an orange and white tennis table ball. The colour of the ball is usually selected based on the colour of the table and the surroundings. For example, if the table is coloured in light blue and the surroundings are generally in a light colour, an orange tennis table ball will be better to use.
The ITTF did some research on what colour combination is the best in order to be visible for players and visually attractive for spectators. Long story short, they found out that the best way to play is on a medium to dark table, surrounded with the same colour of the table and a white tennis table ball. This means that you should not have any bright colours around your court or table.
In conclusion, table tennis balls do not wear out over time. The only way a table tennis ball will start to degrade is if it’s been abused or neglected. If you keep your table tennis balls properly maintained, they should last a long time.
You can fix a dented tennis table ball using a blow-dryer or by boiling it. Is it good to know that there is no difference between an orange and a white tennis table ball regarding their performance.