Ensuring It’ll Last: How to Take Care of Your Fishing Rod

how to store fishing rods in the garage

In the old days, fishing rods had to have two main qualities – strength and rigidity.

Now, the average user of fishing rods takes his/her fishing exploits to hike trails or campsites.

Fishing while engaging in such outdoor activities is very popular.

But, old-school, compact, & full-sized fishing rods are not easy to store or carry while embarking on such outdoor trips.

That’s why modern-day fishers use rods with special storage features. Collapsible fishing rods are popular because of this very reason.

These new-age fishing rods can cost you as much as $300.

Expensive, right?

But, if you know the art of fishing rod storage, you can easily make your rods last for 30 years or more. Suddenly the three-figure price tag seems reasonable, right?

The Best Way To Store Fishing Rods (9 Storage Tips)

rods on wooden floor

Whether you own a cheap spin casting rod or the most expensive fly rod in your town – all fishing rods need proper storage.

They’re both useless if they’re broken.

There’s a very low chance that your fishing pole will break while you’re fishing.

Large basses aren’t the main threat to your fishing rods – simple, everyday accidents are.

Improper storage of fishing equipment is the leading cause of such damages. You may snap off your fishing rod’s tip by accidentally slamming a door on it in your garage.

Or, you may accidentally step on your rod and break off a guide.

Here are 9 essential tips on how to store fishing rods and avoid such damage:

1) Pre-Storage Preparation

Thorough cleaning before you store your fishing rods is very important.

Your rods need to be clean and dry before they’re set aside for storage.

This step is extra important for people who engage in saltwater fishing.

Specks of saltwater and minerals on your rods can send them down a spiral of corrosion. Before that happens, clean your rods every time you return from a fishing trip.

2) Cleaning the Components of Your Fishing Rod

Your fishing gear consists of many small components.

Each of them has a critical role to play in terms of delivering pleasant fishing experiences.

They include – fishing reels, fishing lines, tackle & lures, and accessories (knives, pliers, etc.). Give proper care as routinely as possible to your fishing reels, line, and the rods themselves.

Service your fishing reel at least once a year as it’s the most critical piece of your fishing equipment.

Yearly, professional servicing is the only way to keep your reel in optimal working order.

Wax your fishing rod’s ferrules or joints. Use paraffin wax to keep these joints or connections flexible & friction-free.

Clean each component properly before you store your fishing gear.

The last thing you need is moisture or germs damaging your precious fishing gear in storage.

3) Invest in a High-Quality Rod Rack

A rod rack or rod holder is a storage device that’s designed for one purpose – storing rods.

There are two types of rod holders or racks – vertical & horizontal, each with individual advantages.

In terms of style, the market is full of different styles of vertical & horizontal racks.  Pick one that will look good in your man cave.

Here are your main options:

a) Wall Rod Racks

Fishing rod wall racks come in both vertical/horizontal configurations. Why store fishing rods on your wall?

These storage systems are very space-efficient. Accessing your fishing poles and reels also becomes easier when you store them inside vertical/horizontal wall racks.

b) Freestanding Rod Racks

These storage devices are ideal for fishers who want mobility.

Want to transport your fishing gear across your property every once in a while? Devote a little bit of floor space to a brand-new freestanding rod rack.

Install & move it wherever you want.

c) Ceiling Rod Racks

Want your fishing rods to be off the ground and 100% out of harm’s way?

Then, store your rods inside ceiling racks.

What if you can’t afford brand-new horizontal or vertical storage racks at the moment?

Don’t worry – there are other ways to store fishing rods than using purpose-built racks.

As long as you store your rods upright and prevent their blanks from bending, you can store them without racks, in various locations.

We’ll discuss these locations later in the article.

4) Always Loosen the Drag

Whether you catch fish with trolling reels or bait casting reels – you know how important fishing reels are to the overall fishing experience.

All modern-day reels are made of tiny mechanical pieces.

Tight drags can easily damage these small, sensitive components.

So, always loosen your rod’s drag to avoid curved blanks or snapped lines. Cut off old, badly damaged lines.

5) Pick the Storage Location

Your home, garage, cabin, or backyard bunker are all good places to store fishing rods.

Any location that’s big enough for 6-feet-long fishing poles & safe from extreme weather conditions is a potential storage candidate.

  • Make sure your fishing rod storage location is dry. Moisture can destroy all components of your fishing gear – from the rod to the reel seat.
  • If you can’t find a super-dry storage spot for your fishing rods, invest in a dehumidifier. Also, place silica gel pouches in your rod’s storage bags.
  • Store your rods at room temperature. Although new, synthetic rods are highly resistant to cold temperatures, they buckle under heat.
  • Avoid direct sunlight exposure. The sun’s UV rays may damage the parts of your fishing rod that are glued.

Modern-day fishing rods are incredibly durable.

Here’s an ultra-durable jerkbait fishing rod you’ll fancy.

But, no matter how durable your fishing rods are, safely storing them in risk-free conditions is always the better option.

6) Store Fishing Gear in a Garage

You can, of course, buy a brand-new vertical or horizontal rack & install it in your garage.

But, you can also transform your garage into a place to store rods by:

  • Installing simple wall shelves to hook and store the rods vertically.
  • Transform an existing garage cabinet into a fishing rod rack.
  • Store the reel, line, fishing wire, hooks, and sinkers in large separate bins inside your garage.

7) Store Fishing Rod on the Wall

If you don’t own a garage, you can always hang your fishing rod on your living room wall.

Any wall that’s tall and wide enough can serve as a makeshift vertical or horizontal rack for your rods.

Your wall storage options include:

  • Hanging the rods using hangers.
  • Framing the fishing rods inside protective frames; line your walls with your framed rods.
  • Mounting them directly on the wall in unique arrangements.

8) Storing Two-Piece Fishing Rods

Two-piece, collapsible fishing rods are designed for easy storage and portability.

But, these sensitive pieces of fishing equipment must always be stored inside secure fishing rod cases.

Fold the rod & reel and place them inside the case. Store this case in a dry, spacious spot.

9) Post-Storage Maintenance

Once you’re done storing your fishing gear, perform weekly (if not daily) maintenance.

Make it a habit to dust and clean your rods and reels every day.

Regular, thorough cleaning along with proper storage will guarantee that your equipment lasts longer than you expect.


If you’re a fishing enthusiast, your fishing rod is like your baby.

You’ll spend many cherishing moments with this piece of fishing equipment.

But, just like babies, these rods are prone to various threats.

Use this nine-step guide on how to store fishing rods to protect your “babies” from harm.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you store fishing rods and reels?

You can store them vertically or horizontally inside fishing rod racks. Vertical storage is better because it keeps your rods from bending. Horizontal storage is preferable only when you’re pressed for space.

Is it OK to store fishing poles outside?

No. No matter how durable your fishing poles are, never expose them to moisture or harsh sunlight for long periods. 

How to clean fishing reels before storage?

Are Vertical Storage Racks the Best for Storing Fishing Rods?

Yes. Storing your fishing rods vertically will lower the chances of them getting curved or bent.