Best Bowling Ball Cleaner

We spent 35 hours researching and testing more than 12 different types of bowling ball cleaners and found that ease of use, results, and cost were the most important factors for consumers who were shopping for bowling ball cleaners. Monster Tac Bowling Ball Cleaner scored high marks in all categories and is our overall top pick.  This USBC approved cleaner has been tested by third party companies to ensure its quality. It works with all types and brands of bowling balls, cleaning the belt mark and grease, dirt, and lane oil from the ball to keep it in prime bowling condition. This easy to use cleaner can be put on a rag and polished onto the ball making it simple to do on a regular basis.

Bowling Ball Cleaner Reviews
10 mins to read
17 products considered
12 products reviewed
35 hours reviewing

1. Monster Tac

Best Overall Bowling Ball Cleaner

5/5 Product Rating

Monster Tac Universal bowling ball cleaner works safely and efficiently on a variety of bowling ball surfaces.  The lightweight plastic spray bottle makes it easy to carry and easy to use.

All you have to do is spray it on your ball and then wipe it down with a microfiber towel.  There are two sizes available of Monster Tac Bowling Ball Cleaner: 4 ounces and 32 ounces.  If you play daily, the 32 ounce bottle will be more cost effective.

Using this bowling ball cleaner will ensure that the dirt, grease, oil, and belt marks from the return are removed from you ball without affecting the surface and will keep your ball looking great too.  It is a perfect choice for bowlers who want to extend the life of their bowling ball while keeping its performance on track.

You can use Monster Tac bowling ball cleaner between games, between frames, and even between shots so your ball performs like new with every throw. There is a Monster Pad Bowling Applicator that you can purchase separately if you choose.

Jonathan Maxwell

2. Reacta Shine

Best Overall Bowling Ball Cleaner – Runner Up

4.8/5 Product Rating

This one step bowling ball cleaner and polish will keep your reactive bowling ball in premium shape. The bowling ball shaped bottle is appealing to the eyes and is super easy to use. 

The creamy consistency goes a long way so you only need a little bit.  Using this cleaner will not only clean the dirt and oils that affect performance off the ball, it instantly restores the tackiness back to your ball as well. 

This bowling ball cleaner can be used with the ball spinner or without and still achieve the same great results. Use this product to remove belt marks, dirt, and grime from your ball. 

You can use Reacta Shine bowling ball cleaner before your game starts, while the game is in progress, and after the game is over.  You can even use this cleaner and polisher between frames.

Reacta shine bowling ball cleaner is affordable and USBC approved.  It is one of the best bowling ball cleaners and polishers on the market.  It is easy to use and has a pleasant, fresh smell unlike some of the others on the market.

Jonathan Maxwell

3. Tac Up

4.5/5 Product Rating

Tac Up bowling ball cleaner is made up of a biodegradable formula that is eco-friendly as well as effective.

This product restores the natural tackiness back to your ball and provides consistently smooth rolls, throw after throw.  It is USBC approved and is perfect for use before your game, throughout the game while it is in progress and after the game as well.

Using Tac Up regularly will extend the life of your bowling ball and increase performance levels. The small 8 ounce bottle is easy to carry in your bowling bag. It can even accommodate a spray bottle attachment for even easier application.

Spray on the ball directly and let sit for 5 or 10 minutes and then wipe off with a microfiber towel. Using this cleaner will remove belt marks, oil from the lane and dirt from the lane and ball return completely so your ball looks just like new.  Despite the strong smell that can be a bit off-putting, this product does a great job of cleaning your bowling balls.

Jonathan Maxwell

Bowling Ball Cleaner Comparison

Monster Tac


Tac Up

Ultra Tac






Quantity (fl oz) 4 – 32 4 8 8 16 5 6 32 4 8
Contains Isopropyl Alcohol Windex Degreaser Isopropyl Alcohol Degreaser Isopropyl Alcohol Degreaser Windex Wax Polish Degreaser
Nozzle Type Pump Spray Pop Top Pump Spray Pump Spray Pop Top Pump Spray Pop Top Pop Top Pop Top Pop Top
Grit 1,500 1,500 1,500 2,000 3,000 1,500 2,500 800 5,500 500


Bowling Ball Cleaner Buying Guide

Bowling Ball Cleaner Buying Guide

Why cleaning your bowling ball is important

Nothing frustrates a bowler more than missing the hook and subsequently missing the shot. Bowling balls typically absorb a lot of oil from the lanes. This oil then attracts any dirt and debris that is on the lane or the ball return. This debris and oil can affect your game two different ways. The first way is by affecting the shape of the ball. You will notice that the ball isn’t hooking the way it is supposed to or the straight shot fluctuates off of its straight path. In addition to this, the change of behavior in your ball affects how you usually play. The usual position or angles don’t seem to work anymore.

There is an easy remedy for this that can get you back on track: cleaning your bowling ball regularly and with a proper bowling ball cleaner. Using soap and water to clean your ball can compromise the integrity of the ball and soap tends to leave a residue that will negatively affect its performance. Using a proper bowling ball cleaner will break through the grime, dirt, and oil and remove it without affecting the surface of the ball. This will ensure your ball will do what it is supposed to do.

Choosing the Best Bowling Ball Cleaner

Using the proper bowling ball cleaner can prevent your game from getting messed up by minor things like oil and dirt on the surface of the ball. It’s bad enough to mess up a shot by improper throwing; it’s another to mess it up with something that is completely avoidable with the right care and product. You can find the right bowling ball cleaner for your needs based on the following factors:

How often you play – Are you a beginner just starting out or a casual, once in a while player? Are you a professional or advanced player wanting to go professional? How often you play will determine whether getting a bowling ball cleaner is necessary. If you are at the lanes more than 3 times each week you should invest in a bowling ball cleaner and use it regularly. Look for a cleaner that works with all kinds of cover stocks. Some bowlers combine cleaners if they find two they like. You may try a few before you find the one you want to stick with but if you use the information we have provided in this guide, the guesswork will be eliminated and you can find the right product for cleaning your bowling ball much easier.

Cost – Fortunately, this is not an expensive product overall. While there are some that may be a little more expensive than others, overall, bowling ball cleaners are not going to break the bank even if you by the most expensive one on the market. Look for value, brand reputation, and results. Some brands offer multiple size options for your convenience. If you clean your ball every day, multiple times a day you may want to consider a larger bottle that will be more cost effective.

Bowling Ball Cleaner Buying Guide

Size over quantity – If you spend more days in the bowling alley than out of it, you will want to consider the larger bottle as we mentioned above. Many bowlers purchase the larger, more economical bottle and then get a small spray bottle to keep in their bags for convenience.

Versatility – Aside from looking for a cleaner that covers all cover stocks; look for cleaners that have the USBC approval for use before, after, and all throughout the game. It should also be able to be used by hand and with a ball spinner as well. Other versatile features include being a polisher in addition to a cleaner and having a lighter scent than some types do. No one wants to be forced out of the bowling area by strong, overpowering fumes.

Tackiness – Many bowling ball cleaners do more than just clean off the ball. Some will also add tackiness back to the surface of the ball. This tackiness is critical for controlling the ball and helping it get the proper grip on the lane when you are throwing hooks. Without this tackiness your ball could not hook the way it is supposed to. Cleaning the ball can take away some of the tackiness if you are not using a cleaner that is designed to put that tackiness back on the surface. There are many cleaners that offer this feature.

USBC approved – Not all bowling ball cleaners have this approval. This important approval means that the product has been tested by third parting testers and has been found to meet all standards and criteria for getting the USBC approved label. This is especially important if you are tournament or competitively playing. If the bowling ball cleaner you are looking at does not contain this stamp of approval it is recommended that you do not purchase it.

Safety – the majority of bowling ball cleaners on the market will have specific instructions on how to use it properly as well as safety warnings. This is a cleaner, so it should be treated properly and with care especially around children since many of them contain chemicals that can be dangerous if you are improperly exposed to them. Keep all bowling ball cleaners out of reach of children and pets. Although some of the bottles may look fun to a child like the Reacta line that is packaged in cute little bowling pin shaped bottles, they are not safe and can cause harm if the child or pet ingests them or touches them and then touches their eyes.


Keeping your bowling ball clean may not be something you have thought about if you are a casual bowler or are a newbie but experts and advanced players know the importance of regularly cleaning your ball and do it on a regular, daily basis. The maintenance and care you give your bowling ball will determine how long it lasts and how well you play with it.

Investing in the right bowling ball cleaner that meets all of the criteria we mentioned above is not going to cost you an arm and a leg. It is one of the least expensive maintenance supplies you will incur but the results are well worth the cost.

Bowling Ball Cleaner Buying Guide

Ignoring the importance of regularly cleaning your bowling ball with an approved bowling ball cleaner is a fast way to have the buildup on your ball affect your game in a big way. It only takes minutes and is easy to do so there is no reason not to make it a regular part of bowling.

The three top-rated bowling ball cleaners we have featured above are all examples of the type of bowling ball cleaner you want to choose. If you are looking for a fast solution to your ball cleaning needs and don’t want to look around, any one of these great products will do the trick.

The information you have learned from this guide has provided you with the right knowledge and tools to choose the right bowling ball cleaner for your needs as well as for your bowling ball. Deciding which one to choose comes down to reading descriptions, determining what your needs are, deciding a budget if you feel the need to (these products are not overly expensive so almost all of them will fit into a budget, even a low one) and customer comments.

Reading what other bowlers are saying about a particular cleaner will give you some inside information as to how that bowling ball cleaner performs and what, if any, problems there are with it.

Does it have a terrible smell? Is it hard to use or leave dirty spots? Does it take a lot of product to obtain the right level of cleanliness you’re after? Most of these questions get answered when customers leave their reviews and opinions. This information will help steer you toward the high end products and avoid the ones that do not meet expectations. This insider information will help avoid you wasting time or money on the wrong product.

Jonathan Maxwell

Jonathan manages our Sports & Fitness, Outdoors and Automotive categories. When he's not writing and researching products he enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee and spending time waxing down his 370z.

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