10 Hunting Bow Care Tips That Notch the Arrow

By  //  July 28, 2022

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Hunting bows, also known as compound bows, are one of the most popular types in hunting. Regular weapons maintenance is essential to ensuring the bow lasts, whether you are competing professionally in archery competitions or donning turkey bow hunting camouflage for a casual hunting trip with your friends.

Hunting bows have more moving parts than any other type of bow. That means if you own a compound bow, you must do quite a bit of maintenance to keep it in good condition. These ten hunting bow care tips and tricks will keep allowing you to keep notching your arrows.

Inspect the strings

One of the most important things to keep an eye on constantly is the strings on your bow. Bowstrings require almost constant attention year-round.

While inspecting your bow, you will want to watch out for signs of wear or fraying on the strings. Replace these strings yearly due to normal wear and tear, but if they are worn or frayed, replace them as soon as possible.

When not using your bow, inspect the strings and wax them at least once every month. During busier times, such as hunting season, wax the strings every week.

Inspect the hardware of the bow

If the strings are all well and good, you will want to inspect your hardware next to ensure good condition.

It is a good idea to inspect your bow limbs regularly because they are laminated. If exposed to high heat, these limbs will delaminate and become layers. The bow will be more likely to fail when the limbs are delaminated. Avoid storing bows in hot places.

Another essential part of a hunting bow is the frame. Inspect the structure regularly for damage such as cracks, twists, or bulges. Always check the frame before shooting the bow.

Lastly, inspect the screws and bolts of the bow. These should be tightly fitted and free of corrosion damage. To prevent corrosion, clean and lightly oil the screws and bolts after using your bow.

Inspect the cam system

The cam system is vital in making your hunting bow function. Synchronization and timing are two main things to inspect in a hunting bows cam system.

Synchronization helps the limbs of the bow function and move together. With the bow fully drawn, check how the cams rotate to see if the cam synchronization works. When synchronized, the cams move as one, but adjustment is needed if you do not see this.

The timing system lets you know how much energy the bow’s cams store. Timing affects a bow’s draw, length, and poundage. You will have to consult your bow’s manufacturer guidelines on timing.

Lubricate axles regularly

To keep every part of your hunting bow running smoothly, performing maintenance on the axles is necessary. Lubricated axles will give the cables and cams on your bow smooth, stress-free movement.

If your hunting bow has needle bearings, do not use oil with cleaning agents to lubricate it, as this will damage your axles. You will have to use a specially formulated grease lubricant.

Never dry fire your bow

A dry fire means releasing your bow without an arrow, which most can do. However, for compound bows doing this can be dangerous. Compound bows transfer all built-up energy into the arrow when shot. Trying to dry fire a compound bow can backfire, damage your bow, or even harm you.

Always take your time to notch and release your arrow. You can accidentally dry fire your bow if you shoot too quickly without taking time to make sure the arrow is notched properly.

Listen to the sounds your bow makes

Listening to the sound the hunting bow makes when you draw it can reveal problems you might not have seen with a visual inspection. After you feel like you have checked every corner possible on your hunting bow, try to pay attention to the sounds coming from it when in use.

If you hear any unusual noises coming from your bow, inspect it or take it in to have it checked by a professional.

Tune your bow

You can use paper to tune your bow to see if it is functioning well by following these steps:

■ Find a piece of paper and attach it to a frame.

■ Stand eight feet away from the paper.

■ Shoot an arrow through the paper.

■ Adjust the bow according to the results.

■ Repeat this process until the bow is tuned.

A simple paper tuning can tell you a lot about the performance of your bow and hint at any possible issues. If your bow has no problems, the hole the arrow makes should be clean and straight.

Store the bow away in a proper location

As mentioned, leaving your bow in bad conditions can affect your functionality. The best place to store your bow is in its designated bag or container. Keeping your bow exposed to the elements will deteriorate the bow over time. Moisture and heat can morph your bow out of shape, causing the material to contract and bend. Finding a proper storage location is essential for storage.

Checking your arrows

Once you have checked about every part of a hunting bow, the next thing to inspect is the arrows you use. Before you use an arrow, check for cracks or splits every time. Simple flex tests or using a cotton ball will alarm you of any damage to the arrow.

Have your bow inspected routinely

The best way to keep your bow notch-ready is to have a routine inspection by a professional. A hunting bow is a complex mechanical device. You may not be able to fix every issue that pops up. Having a professional inspect and perform maintenance on it often is guaranteed to have it in tip-top shape 24/7.


A proper, functioning bow is necessary for successful and safe hunting. If you plan on hunting, hopefully, these ten hunting bow care tips will help you become a better hunter this upcoming hunting season.