How to Store Paintballs

Paintballs must be properly stored to last you until your next game and to perform properly. By properly maintaining your paintballs you will be able to insure that they are ready when you are.

Paintballs are perishable goods. Not only do they have an intended life span, but they are made of biodegradable components that are intended to break down over time. This means that paintballs can't be tossed anywhere with the expectation that they will be the exact same as when you left them.

The best way to care for paintballs is to follow the manufacturer's instructions. Not all paintballs, though, come with storage instructions and you often discard the packaging with the information on it (or never notice it in the first place). Some general best practices include the importance of keeping paintballs stored in a dry, cool place and to rotate them over time. The dryness prevents the paintballs from absorbing humidity and swelling while the cool temperature (50-70 degrees Fahrenheit) is an optimal temperature to keep the paintballs as stable as possible. Rotating the paint (such as flipping it over every few weeks) will prevent the paintballs from settling in one position for too long. One other thing to do is to avoid putting paintballs in direct sunlight. The ultraviolet rays in the sun can break down the paintballs over time.

If you don't properly care for paintballs then you may notice problems when you come to use them.

The most common problems include broken balls, misshapen balls and small divots on the sides of balls. While none of these problems mean that you won't be able to play the paintballs, they do decrease the usefulness of the paint.

How any type of paintball ages will depend based on the manufacturer, the specific type and the batch that they were made in.

Some paintballs will become hard and then will not break when you shoot them while others will be come extremely brittle. Others will become soft and may swell slightly (particularly in a humid area) to the point that they do not fit into a paintball gun's firing chamber.

One final thing to note is the price of the paintballs. I have not noticed a trend between the price you pay for the paint and how well it stores over time. Some cheap paints will go bad quickly while others will last for a year or more and similar results happen with the expensive paint. Expensive paint will shoot better than the cheap stuff, but don't buy it for its longevity.