How To Bake Hockey Skates At Home
A Step-By-Step Guide
October 12, 2023 by Bill Burniece
Several years back when I told a friend that I was busy “baking my hockey skates“, I received a few seconds of silence followed by minutes of doubt.
But baking hockey skates is a thing.
Table Of Contents
- How To Bake Hockey Skates At Home
- Baking Hockey Skates In The Store Skate Oven
- Baking Hockey Skates – Complete Guide
- Before You Get Started
- In Advance: What You’ll Need
- Step 1: The Oven
- Step 2: Prepare Your Skates
- Step 3: Place Your Skates In The Oven
- Step 4: Fitting Your Skates
- Step 5: Mold The Skates
- Step 6: The Cool Down
- How To Bake Hockey Skates At Home – Video Tutorial
- How To Bake Hockey Skates Conclusion
Also known as heat molding, baking is a common method to make your hockey skates fit more comfortably to your feet.
By heating up your skates, the materials become softer and more pliable, allowing them to mold around the unique shape of your foot, thereby decreasing the time it takes to break them in.
Baking Hockey Skates In The Store Skate Oven
It’s common for hockey stores to have a skate oven in-house that allows you to heat mold your skates.
If you buy your new hockey skates in a hockey store, ask them if they have a skate oven so you can custom-fit them before bringing them home.
You can do the same thing at home if you buy your hockey skates online or in a store without a skate oven.
The next section will detail step-by-step how to bake hockey skates without screwing them up.
Baking Hockey Skates – Complete Guide
Before You Get Started
Warning: It’s critical to understand that not all hockey skates are designed to be heat molded, and there’s always a risk when doing this at home.
You can severely damage your hockey boot or the integrity of the materials if you bake the wrong skates.
Always check the skate manufacturer’s guidelines before going to the next step.
In Advance: What You’ll Need
- Your hockey skates
- An oven (duh)
- Baking sheet
- Oven mitt or a thick towel
- A pair of socks like the kind you wear when you skate
- Chair or bench
Step 1: The Oven
Carefully preheat your oven to 175°F (80°C).
I say carefully because if your oven is too hot you risk melting your skates. Not good.
Many ovens have hotspots, so it makes sense to use an oven thermometer to verify the temperature.
Step 2: Prepare Your Skates
Loosen up or remove the laces of your skates to ensure you can slip your foot in easily after the baking process.
Remove the skate blade guards if you have them. They will be the first thing to melt. Then you have hot rubber or plastic glued to your blades. Good luck getting that off.
Step 3: Place Your Skates In The Oven
Put one of your skates on the baking sheet and place it into the oven. If both skates can fit on the baking sheet without touching each other or the oven walls, you can do both at once. Otherwise, do one skate at a time.
Let the skate(s) sit in the oven for 6-8 minutes. Use the timer.
Again, be cautious, Do not leave them in for too long, as too much heat can break down the skate materials.
Step 4: Fitting Your Skates
Put your socks on first. The ones you would normally wear while playing.
Wearing an oven mitt or using a towel, carefully remove the skate(s) from the oven.
Sit down and quickly but carefully slip your foot into the skate. It should be warm but not hot enough to burn your feet.
Lace the skates up snugly, but not too tight.
Step 5: Mold The Skates
Sit with your skates on for 15-20 minutes. During this time, the skates will cool and conform to the shape of your foot.
Avoid walking around, as this can misshape the softened boot. Just stay seated and let the heated skates do their work.
Step 6: The Cool Down
After 15-20 minutes, carefully remove your skates and let them cool down and harden for at least 24 hours before using them.
Don’t put them in the backyard or your garage. Make sure they are kept in a room-temperature environment during this time.
Repeat If Necessary*: If you feel that the skates haven’t molded enough to your liking, you can repeat the process.
*Another Warning: Do not bake your skates more than twice. Excessive heat molding can and will degrade the boot’s structural integrity.
How To Bake Hockey Skates At Home – Video Tutorial
How To Bake Hockey Skates Conclusion
Once you’ve completed the skate baking process, you’ll notice how nicely they conform to your foot.
Remember that while heat molding can accelerate the break-in process, spending more time on the ice is still the best way to achieve the perfect hockey skate fit.