Your snowboard boots are an important aspect of your riding experience. Not only do they provide the power transfer you need to stay in control of your board, they also provide warmth and comfort when you’re out in the cold. Getting a proper fit for your boots is crucial because, without it, you won’t get the best performance out of your gear.
If you want the best possible comfort and performance, you need to heat mold your snowboard boots. Not all boots are heat-moldable, but such models are worth looking for if you want a custom fit that forms around your feet. Here, we will look at how to heat snowboard boots in a way that gives you a quick, comfortable ride.
Why Heat Mold Snowboard Boots?
Technically, you aren’t actually molding your snowboard boots. Rather, you’re molding the liners inside them. Not all boots have heat-moldable liners, however. First, make sure your boots have that feature. If you heat up liners that aren’t intended to be moldable, they can easily get ruined.
Heat moldable boots provide a customized fit that adds extra control, stability, and comfort to your boarding experience. The shoes mold around your foot as they warm, which means they will match to your exact shape. It’s hard to get a better fit than that. Not only does that feel good, but it also allows you to gain extra control through increased power transfer from your boots to the board.
This customized fit also provides increased stability within your boot in a way that reduces the risk of injury to your ankles and knees. Think of a molded liner as a brace around your foot. Since the liners form snugly around each contour and curve, there isn’t any extra room for your ankle to move around. If you have any ankle issues, heat-moldable liners can help out quite a bit.
How to Heat Mold Snowboard Boots?
The first step is figuring out if your boots are intended to be heat molded or not. Make sure to ask a tech at the shop where you purchased them if they are able to take direct heat without being ruined. Some heat-moldable boots are actually intended to be molded by the heat of your feet and will form as you ride. Other styles need direct heat to get soft enough to form correctly.
If you have a self-molding snowboard boot follow these easy steps:
- Put on your snowboarding socks
- Place your foot in your snowboarding boots
- Tighten down the laces
- You can now either go snowboarding or wear your boots around the house to begin the heat molding process
- Be patient. It can take several days of use for the boots to give you a good custom fit.
If you have a boot that needs to be heated directly, follow these steps:
- Take your snowboard boot liner out of the snowboard boot.
- Put on your boarding socks.
- Plug in a regular hair dryer
- Insert the dryer into the boot liner and turn it on.
- Heat up the liner for several minutes until it becomes flexible and pliable. Be careful not to burn or heat up the liner too much. Check every 20 seconds or so.
- Insert the liner back into the boot
- Place your foot inside the liner
- Lace up and tighten your boot
- Stand up firmly with your tightened boots for about 10 minutes.
- You should now have fully formed liners
- If you don’t think the boot liners have formed properly, you can heat them up again and repeat the above steps
If you’re unsure if your boots are heat-moldable or don’t want to mold them yourself, you should take them into a snowboard shop and ask a qualified tech to help. It’s possible to ruin your boot liners by heating them too much. That can cause them to become ‘packed out,’ which means the padding and support they are supposed to offer no longer exists. You will find this on old liners, as well as ones that have been heated up too much.
I personally love heat moldable liners because of the reasons mentioned at the beginning of the article. A precise fit makes me feel like I’m in better control and the added stability is nice because I’ve had a few ankle injuries over the years. However, you don’t need a heat-moldable option to hit the slopes. You might find that regular liners work great for your personal preferences. Every rider is different. Keep that in mind when you’re looking at new boots or liners.
Do you use heat moldable boots? How did you heat them up? Let us know in the comments below!