Adding new grips to golf clubs is one of those important maintenance procedures that often is overlooked. Golf experts recommend changing out your grips once a year. This is based on a playing average of two to three times a week. You can look at grips being to your clubs, what tires are to a car. Namely, grips help with traction, and the better the traction, the better you contact with the ball. There are some basic things to remember when changing grips on your clubs.
Obviously, the most important thing to remove when placing new grips on your club, is the removal of the old grip. You can use a razor knife to cut through the grip from bottom to top. It should come off fairly easily at that point. If you are working with graphite shafts, be careful not to press so hard that you cut in to the shaft. There will, most likely, be grip tape on the shaft once the grip is removed. This needs to be completely taken off, along with any adhesive, so that your new grip tape will adhere to the shaft without bumps.
You can use your razor knife to do this as well. Golf shops often sell grip tape removal tools, which make the job less time intensive. You can use a solvent, such as mineral spirits, to remove any excess glue.
Prepping for the New Grip
Size up the area that the new grip will cover. You are going to be adding on new grip tape. If you overshoot how far down the new grip is going to go down the shaft, you can run the grip tape too far and have to clean up the additional mess.
The best way to get the length of the grip tape right is to place the grip next to where it is going to go down the shaft. Once you have a close idea, you can mark the shaft with a pen and then run the grip tape down to that point.
Putting on the New Grip
When putting on a new grip, you'll want to start with double-sided grip tape. This will hold your grip nice and tight. Grip tape comes in a couple of sizes, either 1/2 inch, which is wrapped around the club from the top to where the grip ends, or 2 inch grip tape, which runs vertically from the top of the shaft to where the grip ends and then is wrapped around the shaft in one movement.
No matter which type you choose, you'll want to coat it thoroughly with mineral spirits, along with the inside of your grip. This will allow you to put the grip on more easily. Once you have applied enough mineral spirits, you want to put the grip over the end of the shaft and slide it on quickly.
Lining up the Grip
Depending on the grip you buy, you might have vertical lines that need to be applied so that they run straight down the shaft. It's best if you can line up the grip before you put it on, so that there's a minimum of repositioning to be done once the grip is on.
If not, having mineral spirits on the tape and inside the grip will allow you to move the grip so that the lines are in the proper position.