20 Ways to Use Pool Noodles

Believe it or not, pool noodles are good for more than beating up your friends on a steamy summer day. Exactly what other practical applications do they have? Let's take a look.

1. Insulate Your Pipes

Cut a slit in the noodle from top to bottom and wrap them around your pipes during the winter to keep them from getting too cold.

2. Protect Children at the Supermarket

Cut a 12-inch piece of the noodle off and slice it from top to bottom to wrap around shopping cart handles so children don't have to touch the germy handle or hurt their head, nose, or teeth by accident.

3. Stuff Your Boots

Keep your boots in boot shape by cutting a piece of noodle long enough to fit inside so they stay erect in the closet.

4. Form Wreath Shapes

Becky Clegg, author of the blog Happy is a Verb, says, "I have used pool noodles instead of foam for wreath forms. You just cut the noodle to the size you'd like, put the two ends together, and tape that baby really well. It's so much cheaper!"

5. Quiet the Clanking on Sailboat Masts

Certainly this isn't a common problem for most of us, but if you're a sailor you might be familiar with seafarer Dana Greyson's conundrum.

"One thing that drives us sailors crazy is when the wires inside the main mast of our sailboat 'clank,'" says Dana. "Given how small our living space is — about 150 square feet of living space in our 36 foot sailboat — it's a real sleep disruptor. We know a number of sailors who've stopped the problem by pulling their mast — on purpose — and using pool noodles to quietly contain all the otherwise loose wires inside, then stuffing the wire-filled noodles back down into their mast. We hear from them it's become blissfully quiet. Our mast is due to be pulled in two months and we'll likely follow suit."

6. Fortify Car Seats for Children

Certified passenger safety technician Cherlyn Jenkins says, "Pool noodles are acceptable to put under certain rear-facing car seats to get the correct angle when you can not otherwise achieve the correct angle." Please just be careful.

7. Get a Workout In

Fitness pro and author Noodles for Dumbbells: Water Exercise, Weight Management & More Janna Lowell is an expert on how to use noodles to break a sweat. "I am currently quite fond of single leg jumps on the noodle. Beginning with the left foot in the middle, push the noodle to the pool floor and — keeping both knees slightly bent — begin jumping up and down with both legs," she says.

8. Start Stamping

Cut the noodle into different shapes and use them as stamps for craft projects. Circles are easiest, of course, but you can cut the noodle into many other designs.

9. Keep Your Sports Equipment Scratch-Free

Living Aboard Your RV author Janet Groene suggests using pool noodles to pad sports equipment when traveling. "Slice [pool noodles] in required lengths to make a buffer to slip over the edge of a surfboard, snow skis, water skis, and so on."

10. Outfit Your Garage Door to Protect Your Car

Cut a slit in the pool noodle lengthwise and put it on one of the "ribs" of the garage door. When you're parked in the garage with the door shut and open the trunk, the car trunk door will come in contact with the softer surface of the noodle instead of the door, and save your car from scratches.

11. Keep Kids From Rolling Out of Bed

Mom blogger Katie Moseman says, "When your child transitions from a crib to a toddler bed or a full-size bed, place a pool noodle at the edge of the mattress — underneath the sheet and the mattress cover — to keep your child from rolling out of the bed. It works!"

12. Line the Underside of a Loft

Many college students know the pain of standing up underneath their lofted bed and banging their heads on the wood of the bed above. Reduce the amount of concussions your kid gets in a semester by advising them to line the underside with pool noodles to help soften those blows.

13. DIY Your Kids' Halloween Costumes

The possibilities for making Halloween costumes using pool noodles are only limited by your creativity. Find some inspiration at Frugal Living Mom, which has suggestions on how to make pool-noodle ninjas, bats, spiders, cowboys, and more.

14. Stop Drafts From Sneaking Under Your Doors

Make a two-sided draft stopper to keep warm air in and cold air out.

15. Prevent Creasing on Clothing

The blog Living on the Cheap suggests wrapping your clothes hangers in pool noodles to avoid dreaded "hanger dents." There are a few other fun and creative ideas for pool noodles on the post as well.

16. Invite the Force to Be With You

Photographer and mom Kristin Griffin details how she and her husband made mock light sabers for her tiny Star Wars fanatic: "My 7-year-old son loves Star Wars, so my husband took red, green and blue pool noodles, pushed a wooden dowel ¾ of the way into the noodle and used duct tape to keep the noodles in place and cover the handle," she says. "Now, we have light sabers for both Jedi and Sith lords, and my son loves to battle with them. The noodles are a lot softer than plastic toy light sabers, so there are fewer injuries around our house now, too."

17. Use as a Roof-Rack Alternative

Don't want to spend the money on a roof rack for your car to prevent large items from scratching it? Fasten a couple pool noodles to the roof and place your equipment on top to keep everything looking its best before and after transit.

18. Childproof Your Home

If you have little ones that are in danger of bumping their heads on tables and other hard objects, cut pool noodles to size and slit lengthwise and wrap the edges.

19. Protect Value Items During a Move

Cut pool noodles to size and slit lengthwise to wrap items like flat-screen TVs and computer monitors for protection during a move.

20. Impress Your Friends With a Floating Beer Pong Table

And finally, there's absolutely no way you shouldn't have this incredible creation if a) you're under 30 years old, b) you don't have any children, c) you have a pool. A DIY floating beer pong table will be your everything next summer if you follow these detailed video instructions.

Do you have more ideas for how to use pool noodles in different ways? Let me know in the comments below.

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20 Ways to Use Pool Noodles

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Guest's picture

When the little plastic handle breaks on a 5-gallon bucket cut a piece of noodle and slit it and place on the metal handle. Then tape with duct tape to ensure it won't come off the handle. It sure is easier on the hands when the bucket is full.

Guest's picture

Great list of ideas!

A piece of pool noodle can also be used to tuck slipcovers into place and keep them in place!

Guest's picture

I created an entire Pinterest board around our unsold pool noodles! I made sure to add this article to it!