Roller Skate 101: Adjust Your Wheels

The most important thing on your roller skates are the wheels – no doubt! Here’s everything you need to know about adjusting your wheels for a smooth roll.  

You’ll need a Y-Tool!


Your roller skate bestie is your Y-Tool. Place the corresponding section onto your roller skate screw. 


This seems counterintuitive but trust the process. Using your Y-Tool, screw on (turn clockwise) your wheels as tight as you can – without overdoing it; of course, you’ll need to unscrew them later. This gives you the same starting point for all four wheels to loosen more evenly. 

Skater Tip: This step is especially important when readjusting your wheels after use.


Now that your wheels are at the same starting point take your Y-tool and turn the screw counterclockwise to loosen them to your desired speed. The looser the wheel, the faster it spins. 

Skater Tip: Your wheels should not be loose enough to move up and down on your truck screw; if you hear a  noise, they’re too loose!


All 4 wheels should spin at the same speed to keep your skates balanced. Your goal is to have a smooth rolling skate. Don’t be scared to readjust as needed until you get an even roll on all 4 wheels. Even if that means loosening, tightening over and over again. 

Skater Tip: The more you roller skate, the easier this step becomes. You’ll better gauge how much you need to loosen each wheel. Practice makes perfect!

Fast v. Slow Speed 

The tighter the wheel is onto the truck screw, the less it will spin. As you loosen a wheel, you’ll see the spin become faster and faster.

If the wheels are too loose, you’ll hear them moving around – do not skate on these! If they’re too tight, it’ll be hard to roll no matter how much pressure you apply to move forward.

Find the right balance between the two. 

Balanced v. Unbalanced Wheels 

Balanced wheels spin at the same speed. When you roll your skate, it should go in a straight line. 

Unbalanced wheels spin at different speeds. When you roll your skate, it will curve and not go in a straight line. This can mean just one wheel is unbalanced or maybe all four: in this case, readjust. 

That’s it! You’re good to roll out. 

Now that you’re officially part of our Skate (S)quad, we’ll ensure you have all the necessary info to properly care for and customize your skates. 

Stay tuned for more information on your roller skates directly from us in our upcoming Roller Skate 101 blog series.