How to Maintain an Authentic Football

Use leather conditioner to restore your pigskin.

Footballs are designed to be tossed, kicked and to withstand punishment on a regular basis. Authentic footballs are made of genuine leather, and although they are not delicate things, footballs are susceptible to dryness, cracking and tears, particularly if it is not well maintained. Proper care for your authentic football helps ensure that it stands the test of time and is ready for game time.

Keep the football designated for on-field play away from cats and dogs. Dog teeth and cat claws easily tear leather.

Wash a dirty football with water and a cloth. Keep it away from salt water, which can corrode the leather.

Apply leather conditioner to the football. Rub the conditioner into the skin of the football to aid absorption.

Play with the football on surfaces it is designed to withstand such as grass and artificial turf. Avoid rough, rugged surfaces such as concrete.

Store your football in dry place with plenty of ventilation. Do not place it on or near direct heat, particularly when wet, as this causes cracking and shrinkage. Make sure the football is dry before placing it in a bag.

Things You Will Need

  • Water
  • Cotton cloth
  • Leather conditioner

Tip

Inflate the football according the manufacturer's instructions. Do not clean the football with high-pressure water, which can force water through the ball's seams.