Cracked Bowling Balls

By Jeff Ussery
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In many areas of the country, we’re nearing that time of year where everyone starts talking about taking their bowling equipment out of the car when you’re done with league bowling. You may be new to bowling, or you may have never been informed as to why this is so important. It’s definitely a recommendation that protects your investment in your bowling equipment!

Bowling balls should always be kept at room temperature because it helps to avoid inner and outer core separation. It also helps to prevent coverstock cracking and splitting. Bowling balls are made of different parts with different densities. See some of these images below that help show this:
As these parts inside the ball adjust to the air temperature around them, they will shrink or expand with time. But manufacturers design your products to perform at their absolute top level, and to do that, they use different materials with different compositions and densities throughout the bowling balls. The result is a bowling ball with pieces that expand and contract at different rates. Too much shrinkage or expansion in too short of a period of time, and you’ll end up with a ball that splits to relieve that pressure. Some examples look like this:
So what’s the easiest way to prevent this? Simply put, keep your bowling balls at room temperature! Yes, that means they have to come out of your car at night. For some in the coldest of weather, it may mean they need to come out of your car during work, and put back in the car to go to league after work. Of course, you can always rent lockers at the bowling center as well, and you’ll never have to deal with that hassle.

Don’t get caught opening your bag this winter and finding your favorite ball split in half. They’re too expensive to replace! Just take them out of the car….

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9 thoughts on “Cracked Bowling Balls

  1. Eric Imhoff says:

    Is it also true that bowling balls never stop curing? Or other thoughts being that bowling balls even at room temps must be rotated periodically so that they do not leave too much weight on one side and cause cracking? I have had a few drilled bowling balls crack at room temp with very low games. I have also had undrilled bowling balls crack never leaving room temp.


    • Jeff Ussery says:

      That is true Eric. Bowling balls are continuously curing over time, and are constantly giving off gas as they do so. This is why you see some equipment that cracks while even kept at room temperature. While you’re best bet is to keep them at room temperature, any ball could crack at any given time.

      • Eric Imhoff says:

        Thanks for the reply Jeff. I think if more people knew any bowling ball could crack at anytime (for a few various reasons) and try to avoid the extreme weather changes as a preventive it may go along way for most.

    • gary Grosklos sr. says:

      I always keep my bowls in bed rm never never in car but had two storm balls crack never mistreat my balls my bowling buds had storms crack. G Grosklos sr.

    • Stephen Kelly says:

      I think the company’s that make bowling balls do something to the balls so they will crack so we will keep buying or having to buy new bowling balls. I had a LT-48 I was using it on a regular bases and I went to get it and it had a large crack all the way around it and it was kept in my house were the temperature was pretty much the same all the time, what gets me is that I was using it and it wasn’t just laying around. I am not very happy about it I have lost 4 bowling balls in the last 6 months and 2 of them I was using at least once a week. That is not a good thing and it makes me think about buying anymore balls.

  2. Sophia says:

    So I accidentally left my bowling balls in my car for a few days when it was really cold. Is it possible they could crack? Or should they be fine?

  3. Newton says:

    my girl friend have’t bowling likea year left ball in bag then took out of bag and put on coffee table with ball holder in about 2 weeks bowling ball crack all the aroung the ball. thank you

  4. Dennis Louvier says:

    I have had 2 Storm balls crack in half. One was in my locker at the bowling alley and the other in the closet at home. So I think it has more to do with the low humidity indoors than heat changes.

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