HOW TO PUT RODS IN THE ROD SOCKS
This may sound very trivial (the answer is: Who cares?) but I you have ever put together your rod and heard the sound of sand or other debris rubbing in the joints, you may be up for some good advice.
Whatever you do, however careful you are, sand or mud will get on your rod sooner or later. If it is on the rod, it will get into the rod sock. If it is in the rod sock it will be in the joints. I have seen rods where the joints were so scratched that all the paint came off from the male part. This is not just a cosmetic issue it endangers the integrity of the whole joint.
There is a very easy way to avoid this problem: if you use a four piece rod put the upper 3 sections with the male part down, so with the hole up. It is very logical but most guys I see do it exactly the opposite way.
Some may think it is pretty girlish thing to keep your rods clean. Well, there is a river in Slovakia, that is so dirty that after a 2-3 hour long fishing session even a bright green Sage TCX is totally grey. You can imagine how good the line shoots if the rod blank is covered with dirt. Even in rivers that look clean the rod shaft will gather particles from the water and that can significantly restrict your casting distance. So I would recommend to clean the rod every evening with some soft clothes. You can use an old toothbrush to clean the rod in between the legs of snake guides. If you don't have an old toothbrush you can use your fishing partners if he or she is not there.
Another very valuable advice: don't leave your toothbrush unattended.