Why Do Bowling Balls Crack? (Reasons And Solutions)

Bowlers all know the importance of keeping bowling balls in top condition. However, even with diligent care, cracks can still develop, leading to a drop in performance or rendering the ball unusable.

In this comprehensive blog post, we will explore the various reasons why bowling balls crack and discuss effective prevention strategies to keep your trusty ball rolling smoothly.

Additionally, we’ll provide solutions for repairing cracked bowling balls and answer some common questions on maintaining your favorite piece of equipment.

Why Do Bowling Balls Crack?

Bowling ball cracks can occur due to various reasons, including age and wear and tear, improper storage and handling, extreme temperatures, high-impact strikes, and improper drilling and balance.

Age And Wear And Tear

Over time, even the best bowling balls will show signs of aging and wear. Consistent use can cause gradual deterioration of the ball’s core and coverstock, making it more susceptible to cracking.

A telltale sign of wear and tear may be visible scratches or gouges on the surface which not only affect performance but also weaken the ball’s structural integrity. While it may be difficult to prevent this type of damage completely, proper maintenance such as cleaning off lane oil after each session and sanding down minor imperfections can help extend a bowling ball’s lifespan.

Additionally, rotating between multiple balls during practice can help reduce strain on any individual one by distributing usage evenly among them.

Improper Storage And Handling

Proper storage and handling of a bowling ball are crucial in preventing cracks from developing. Leaving the ball out in direct sunlight or storing it in extreme temperatures can cause the coverstock to expand or contract, leading to cracking.

When transporting your bowling ball, consider investing in a protective bag that will help prevent it from getting jostled around too much. It’s also recommended to keep your ball away from any harsh chemicals or cleaning products that could potentially damage the surface.

Extreme Temperatures

Exposure to extreme temperatures can cause a bowling ball to develop cracks. Both hot and cold temperatures can have negative effects on the ball’s structure, leading to irreparable damage over time.

For example, leaving a bowling ball in an extremely hot car trunk or next to a heater for long periods can cause the coverstock material to warp or melt, which weakens its overall durability.

To prevent these temperature-related issues from occurring, it is best to store your bowling ball in a climate-controlled area where the temperature stays between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you live in an area with extreme weather conditions, avoid leaving your ball outside for extended periods of time or bringing it into environments that are too hot or cold.

High-impact Strikes

Accidents happen, and sometimes bowlers make high-impact strikes that can contribute to bowling ball cracks. A high-impact strike occurs when the ball hits the pins too hard or at an awkward angle, causing damage to the coverstock or core material.

Bowlers should avoid making high-impact strikes whenever possible by focusing on accuracy and technique instead of power. Using proper form and following through with each throw can help reduce stress on the ball and prevent cracks from forming.

Additionally, choosing a durable bowling ball made of high-quality materials can increase its longevity and protect it against accidental damage.

Improper Drilling And Balance

One of the reasons why bowling balls can develop cracks is due to improper drilling and balance. When a ball is not drilled correctly, it can cause stress in certain areas of the ball, leading to fractures over time.

To prevent this from happening, it’s essential to have your bowling ball drilled by a professional who understands how to achieve proper weight distribution and balance for your specific needs.

This will help ensure that the ball performs optimally while reducing your risk of developing cracks in the long run.

Solutions For Repairing Bowling Ball Cracks

why do bowling balls crack

Assessing The Damage

To determine the extent of damage to a cracked bowling ball, you need to assess the location and size of the crack. A small crack that does not affect the ball’s performance can be ignored, but larger cracks require immediate attention.

Look for any signs of chipping or splitting on the surface or holes in deeper areas around the ball.

It is essential to have an expert examine more significant cracks because they could compromise balance and cause injury if continued use occurs without repair. If you suspect damage to your bowling ball, take it away from play immediately until further inspection and repairs can be made.

Filling The Cracks With Epoxy

If your bowling ball has developed cracks, one solution is to fill them with epoxy. Epoxy is a strong and durable adhesive that can effectively seal small cracks and prevent them from getting worse.

To do this, you will need to clean the crack thoroughly and follow the instructions provided by the epoxy manufacturer.

Prevention of bowling ball cracks through proper maintenance and handling practices is key, but accidents can happen. If you do find yourself dealing with a cracked bowling ball, options like filling it with epoxy or using a bowling ball plug can help extend its lifespan while saving you money on purchasing a new one.

Using A Bowling Ball Plug

A bowling ball plug is a solution used to repair cracks in the ball. The plug is typically made of resin and added to the affected area to strengthen it while filling any gaps that might be present.

This process can be done by a professional or at home with a do-it-yourself kit.

One benefit of using a bowling ball plug is that it’s relatively inexpensive compared to other repair methods, such as re-drilling the ball or getting a replacement. It also allows bowlers to continue using their favorite balls without having to worry about potential damage affecting their game.

Additionally, regular inspections and upkeep are essential components of maintaining your bowling ball’s integrity over time.

Re-drilling The Ball

If your bowling ball has cracks and the damage is too severe to be fixed with just filling or plugging, re-drilling may be necessary. This involves drilling new finger holes and thumb inserts into different areas of the ball to redistribute weight and balance.

It’s also worth mentioning that if you’re considering re-drilling, it may be a good time to evaluate whether your current ball is still suitable for your skill level and playing style.

Factors such as weight, coverstock type, surface texture, and overall durability can all impact how well you perform on the lanes.


In conclusion, understanding the reasons for bowling ball cracks is crucial to prevent costly repairs and potential injuries during play. Age, wear and tear, improper storage, extreme temperatures, high-impact strikes, and incorrect drilling or balance can lead to cracks in your bowling ball.

However, taking preventive measures like proper storage techniques, regular maintenance, and inspection, avoiding extreme temperatures, and correct usage of the ball with professional drilling and balance can prolong the lifespan of your balls.

In case of damage or cracks that may incur a cost to repair them through epoxy filling or re-drilling the ball with expert help can come in handy. Remember to choose the right material and density for your ball while considering gravity impact.