I never soak my reels. I soak the spools after each outing if I will not be using them for a few days. It may just be me but I think there is a better change that water could get past the seals a lot easier if the reel is left in water for even as long as an 1 or 2 hrs. I rinse my reel and towel dry it, the spool stays in a bowl for two hrs. Change the water then 2 hrs again, towel dry then allow to stand on a dry towel overnight. As for a good reel at a good price it's hard to beat a Allen Alpha III at $145 new.