What Can Be Done with Old Bowling Balls?

Do you have an old bowling ball lying around that you don’t know what to do with?

Or maybe you’ve just upgraded to a new ball and don’t want the old one anymore. Either way, there are plenty of ways to reuse or recycle your discarded bowling balls.

Check out some of the ideas about creative things to do with old bowling balls below!

Depending on the condition they are in, old bowling balls can be donated to a thrift store or charity, they can be used as decorations in the garden or at home, owners can give them to bowling alleys or shops, if possible they can be fixed, or be sold on eBay or Craigslist, be recycled or in the final case be thrown out in the proper way.

Where Can I Donate Used Bowling Balls?

One great way to reuse your old bowling ball is to donate it to a charity or organization. There are a number of charities that accept donations of used sports equipment, and bowling balls are no exception.


So if you have an old ball that you don’t want to keep, consider donating it to a good cause to be used as house balls.

A local goodwill or Salvation Army will be happy to take your bowling ball off your hands. The bowling balls can then be placed in their retail stores and used as house balls for people who come in to bowl and play.


Youth Leagues and Schools

Youth leagues and charity events can also benefit from the use of donated bowling balls.

Another place you can donate your bowling ball is to a school. A lot of schools have physical education programs that may require kids to use bowling balls.

Arts and Crafts Classes

You may also try giving the old ball to local artists, or an art class. It could be a lot of fun for them, too.

Bowling balls are round so you can’t carve them up to create things, but they still have their uses in art projects and they can paint it.

Try to Fix the Bowling Ball, Before Getting Rid of It

A new ball is often expensive, so you should try saving money first before you recycle or throw it out.

Local bowling pro shops may have the tools necessary to fix what is broken on your bowling balls, and an expert may have more experience about bowling balls than you do.

Before you get rid of your old bowling ball, take it to a pro shop and see if they can fix what is wrong with it. It’s possible that all it needs is a new coverstock or polish job.

This will also help balls perform better if you are still planning to dispose them.


Use Old Bowling Balls As Decorations

Another option is to reuse the ball as a decoration. There are many ways to decorate with an old bowling ball, and what you use will depend on what condition the ball is in.

If the ball is relatively new and in good condition, you could use it as a paperweight or doorstop. If the ball is older and has some cracks, you could use it as a planter. Simply drill a hole in the top of the ball and add some soil and a plant.

If you are an arts fan, use the ball as yard art in your garden, paint it, or place it on your porch or patio to add a little bit of fun. Give new life to your old bowling ball and reuse it!

Clean Bowling Ball

Donate the Old Bowling Ball to Your Local Bowling Alley

If you don’t want to donate your old bowling ball to a charity, consider giving it to your local bowling alley.

Many bowling alleys are always in need of used balls, and they may be willing to give you a small discount on your next game if you give them a ball.

Used equipment is very important for a bowling alley, as the oil patterns on the lanes can wear down a ball very fast. Reusing what they have will save them money, and it’s also better for the environment.

Give Used Bowling Balls to Friends or Your Local League

Local bowling leagues are always looking for used bowling balls. If you have any friends who bowl, see if they want your old ball.

Most people are more than happy to get a free bowling ball, and your friend will likely appreciate the gesture. It is also great for the sport, as it reduces what needs to be purchased and what goes in the landfills.

Sell the Old Bowling Ball on eBay or Craigslist

Another option is selling your old bowling ball on eBay or Craigslist. Depending what the ball is made of, you can expect to get anywhere between $20 and $150 for an old ball that still works.

The more rare the material used in the ball, the more valuable it will be when trying to sell it. Most balls are made of either plastic or urethane, so if you have an older ball with one of these materials it will be worth more.

Recycle the Bowling Ball if Possible

Recycling centers will accept old balls, but the process of recycling them can be a little complicated. Most recycling centers will only accept bowling balls if they are made from a specific type of plastic.

So if your old ball is made from a different type of plastic, it may not be recyclable.

If Nothing Else, Throw Out the Bowling Ball

Throwing out your ball into a recycling bin is definitely not the best thing to do – in fact it’s the last solution.

If you can’t recycle it at a recycling center, and trying to sell it or give it away is out of the question, at least check with your local waste management to see what the rules are for throwing out bowling balls.

Many cities will require bowlers to trash and throw out bowling balls and old equipment properly, because they are considered hazardous material due to their coverstock materials.

Closing Thoughts About What to Do with Old Bowling Equipment

There are a number of ways that you can reuse or recycle old bowling balls. Depending on what condition it is in, what material it is made of, and what you are trying to do with the ball, there are many options for what you can do with your bowling ball.

The average person in the US throws away a whopping 12 pounds of plastic every day. With so much waste going unused, it is important to find ways to reuse old items, such as bowling balls that may have been considered trash before.

In this guide, we’ve covered some ideas for what can be done with an old bowling ball from recycling and repurposing them into something new all together!

What are your thoughts on these ideas? Do you have any tips or tricks for recycling an old bowling ball?

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