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Inside The Outdoors

How to Waterproof Your Clothes

29.04.2014 | Outdoor How to Guides
Downpour Waterproof Trousers Mens

Follow our step by step guide to restore the waterproof properties of your waterproof trousers

Have you ever bought waterproof clothes only to find after a couple of months you notice it’s not as waterproof as it used to be? Don’t panic!

Waterproof fabric has a Durable Water Repellent coating (DWR) and a membrane made up of one way valves. Over time these may be broken down or clogged by a build up of dirt, oil or sweat.

Reproofing your clothing is easy, quick and will lengthen the life of your waterproof garments. We recommend reproofing your waterproof clothes around every 3-6 months or after particularly heavy use.

Not sure how? Read on, as this guide will tell you all you need to know about restoring the waterproof properties of your jackets, trousers and any other waterproof garments you have.

1. If it’s time to proof, it also generally time to wash too. Luckily the two go hand in hand. Wash your garment following the care guide on the label. You could find a 2 in 1 product that washes and proofs in one go – in which case job done!  Time to get back outdoors!

2. Choose your proofer – spray on or wash in. Check whether the proofer is heat activated or air dried – heat activated requires heat to make it work properly (more on this in step 5)

3. You’ve chosen a spray? Great. Now that your freshly washed waterproof clothes are dry, hang them up and spray evenly from around 15-20cm away. Once the garment has been covered allow it to dry. Areas such as elbows, shoulders and knees may require a second coat – ensure the garment is completely dry before applying a second coat and make sure any excess proofer is wiped away with a damp cloth so as to avoid any residue marks.

4. Opted for wash in? Make sure your washing machine is free from built up detergent and pour the recommended amount of proofer into the detergent compartment. Wash at 30 degrees.

5. Heat activated proofer – you will have much better results if your garment can be tumble dried or ironed. Check the garment care label before doing so.

6. Air cured proofer – simply hang your waterproof clothing up to dry naturally.

7. Spot proofing – again very simple. You’ve spot cleaned that bit of mud, now just dab over the area with some air cure proofer and allow it to dry!

Easy as that! Customers often ask if using a waterproofer on normal clothes will make them waterproof. Well, the great news is that it will add a DWR coating (durable water repellent, in case you’ve forgotten) to the fabric to provide some water resistance, but you cannot make non-waterproof fabric fully waterproof. The DWR coating works to prevent water soaking into the fabric.

Any other questions about waterproofing your clothing, please check out our Waterproofing FAQ’s.