How to waterproof an inexpensive tent
Even more amazing than the durability and effectiveness of this 20×20 tent is how simple it is to set up and take down. This 20×20 canopy is equally as effective as a normal garage in protecting against the weather. You’ll probably find it more convenient as well because you can relocate or even collapse this storage facility to meet your needs as needed. Corrosion, chipping, and peeling are all prevented by the powder coat finish. Tents measuring 20′ by 20′ are available for purchase. Canopies Nick from Pittsburgh inquired about the day of July 2, 2021.
1 Response We do have stake kits available.
Laura, who lives in Palm Desert, California questioned on November 25, 2020 Ideally, a 20×20 tent with sides that can be rolled back would be ideal.
- 1 ResponseUnfortunately, we do not have any.
- on November 25, 2020 Sarah B from New Jersey inquired on December 10, 2017 I’m hoping to get a pop-up tent that will be simple to set up for athletic events.
- What is the biggest size that has been created in the pop-up style?
- Rick from Grand Rapids, Michigan, inquired on May 18, 2017.
- Thank you very much.
- Kathleen from Manassas, Virginia inquired on June 12, 2014.
- Can you provide a recommendation?
- It does not require any sides.
- Our Caravan Monster Industrial Aluminum Canopy is the only 20 x 20 popup type canopy that we currently offer.
All other 20 × 20 pieces offered on the internet will require some type of time-consuming construction, as well as stakes and guy wires to attach the framework of the canopy itself. Chris C. – eCanopy Product Specialist submitted a comment on June 12, 2014
Nick from Pittsburgh inquired about the day of July 2, 2021. Do you only offer the stakes and tension ropes for canopies or do you also sell the whole thing? There is just one correct answer. Stake kits are available for purchase. Please visit this page. Melanie C. submitted this on July 5, 2021. Laura, who lives in Palm Desert, California questioned on November 25, 2020 Ideally, a 20×20 tent with sides that can be rolled back would be ideal. Do you have anything similar to this? There is just one correct answer.
- Submitted by:Sarah B.
- When I need to use them in wet weather, this tent must be waterproof and have side panels.
- There is just one correct answer.
- 1 ResponseWe do not sell a frame separately for a 20′ x 20′ canvas.’ Submitted by:Sarahon The 18th of May, 2017.
- We are searching for a 20 x 20 tent that is easy to set up and does not require any ground stakes.
- It is strictly for the purpose of providing shade.
- There is just one correct answer.
- All other 20 × 20 pieces offered on the internet will require some type of time-consuming construction, as well as stakes and guy wires to attach the framework of the canopy itself.
- – eCanopy Product Specialist submitted a comment on June 12, 2014
Tent Waterproofing: Top Tips on How to Waterproof a Tent
It may seem bizarre to have to waterproof tents since one of its primary functions is to keep the rain out, but tent waterproofing is a necessary evil. Even the highest-quality camping tents, however, can degrade with time and lose their ability to protect the user from the elements. In order to give your wilderness home a little TLC, you’ll need to know what you’re doing and how to waterproof a tent when the occasion arises.
Why do you need to waterproof a tent
The majority of half decent tents are waterproof when you purchase them; nevertheless, there are some low-grade tents on the market that simply pretend to be water-resistant when purchased. These tents are not waterproof in any way, and they will begin to melt as soon as there is even a slight suggestion of moisture in the air. Not nearly, to be honest. However, when the wind picks up and the rain starts pouring, they will almost likely be insufficient protection. In this case, applying a tent waterproofing treatment will not make the tent impermeable, but it will increase its water resistance.
Although the vast majority of half decent tents are waterproof when purchased, there are some low-grade tents on the market that just pretend to be water-resistant in nature. Because these tents are not waterproof, the first suggestion of moisture in the air will cause them to begin to dissolve. Not nearly, to be honest. Yet when the wind blows and the rain pours, they will almost probably not provide sufficient protection. In this case, adding a tent waterproofing treatment will not make the tent impermeable, but it will increase its water-resistance significantly.
Use and age
It is inevitable that fabric that is continuously beaten by the weather, that is coated in filth and dust, that is left to dry out in the sun, and that is then folded up in a bag and left for months, will degrade. As a result of the weather and dirt, water gets absorbed into the fabric, making it less efficient against rain and wind protection. Tent waterproofing treatments, such as DWR coatings, assist to extend the life of tent fabrics by covering the surface of the fabric with a water-repellent coating.
The strength of the tent seams will be compromised as a result of time and exposure to the environment. When you purchase a tent, the majority of them will have fully sealed seams. However, seals can become compromised with time, resulting in leaks at the seams. This issue can be resolved by using a seam sealer.
Identify the problem
The strength of the tent seams will be weakened with time and exposure to the weather. When you purchase a tent, the majority of them will have completely sealed seams. In the meantime, though, seals may get compromised, resulting in leaks at seams. This issue can be resolved by using a seam sealer.
How to waterproof a tent
Some individuals waterproof their tent after every few uses, while others do it on a more regular basis. Others may only do tent waterproofing once over the lifetime of their tents!
Your tent’s waterproofing frequency is determined by the amount of time you spend in it, how well you care for it, and under what conditions you use it. We recommend that you do this at least once a year, at the start of the camping season.
01 Clean your tent
Some individuals waterproof their tent after every few uses, while others do it on a more regular basis after every usage. Others may only waterproof their tents once over the lifetime of the tents! Your tent’s waterproofing frequency is determined by the amount of time you spend in it, how well you care for it, and the circumstances in which you use it. Every year, at the beginning of camping season, we recommend that you do so at least once.
- Some individuals waterproof their tent after every few uses, while others do it on a more regular basis. Others may only do tent waterproofing once throughout the lifespan of their tents. The frequency with which you waterproof your tent is determined by how frequently you use it, how well you care for it, and in what conditions you use it. We recommend doing it at least once a year, at the start of the camping season.
Some individuals waterproof their tents on a regular basis, after every few uses. Others may only waterproof their tents once over the lifetime of the tents! The frequency with which you waterproof your tent is determined by how frequently you use it, how well you care for it, and under what conditions it is utilized. We recommend that you do this at least once a year, at the beginning of the camping season.
02 Apply a tent waterproofing treatment
- Set up your tent as soon as possible. Make certain that the tent is clean and moist
- Using a spray, brush, or sponge, apply the treatment to the tent fly from top to bottom. Any surplus product should be cleaned up with a wet towel. Allow it to dry completely before putting it away.
03 Seal the seams
- Make sure your tent is clean and dry before you begin. Lay the tent out on a clean, level surface with the inside of the seams facing up
- This will ensure that the tent stays dry. Apply a tiny amount of rubbing alcohol on a dry towel and wipe the seam to remove any remaining stains from the fabric
- Remove any portions that are flaking away with care. Apply the seam sealer using a tiny brush in accordance with the manufacturer’s directions. Allow it to dry completely before putting it away.
The best waterproof tent sprays
Tent waterproofing solutions are available in a variety of various formulations. Some people choose to wash their tents in addition to treating them with waterproofing. Others include ultraviolet (UV) protection. Here are a few of the greatest alternatives:
Nikwax Tent and Gear Solarproof
- One of the most effective techniques of tent waterproofing is really a preventive measure. As a result of the Solarproof treatment, the fabric is strengthened and protected against UV damage, in addition to providing water repellency and strengthening the fabric. Use of your tent should be preceded by the application of this product.
Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy Duty Water Repellent
- In contrast to the Nikwax products, this Kiwi Camp treatment has a high concentration of chemicals. It is recommended to apply two applications for the optimum effects, and it may be used on objects other than tents.
Nikwax Tech Wash
- Nikwax Tech Wash is generally used as a washing treatment for technical textiles, but it also has the added benefit of revitalizing breathability and water repellency. It is a good idea to include some waterproofing as a preventative measure
Star Brite Waterproofing Spray, Stain Repellent + UV Protection
- Nikwax Tech Wash is generally used as a washing treatment for technical textiles, but it also revitalizes the breathability and water repellency of these materials. A preventive measure such as adding waterproofing is a smart idea.
Scotchgard Outdoor Water Shield
- Nikwax Tech Wash is generally used as a washing treatment for technical textiles, but it also revitalizes the breathability and water repellency of the fabric. It is a good idea to include some waterproofing as a precautionary measure.
Cotton canvas is used to construct some of the most comfortable and long-lasting tents for camping and glamping. Bell tents and teepee tents, for example, function exceptionally well in inclement weather. This high level of performance may be attributed to both the structural design and the durability of the canvas fabric. Camping enthusiasts have relied on cotton canvas for generations because of the inherent qualities of the fibers to make a highly waterproof fabric that has proven to be durable and long-lasting.
This is not due to the fact that they are defective, but rather due to the fact that the waterproofness of cotton canvas actually increases when it is wet.
Preventing your tent from becoming wet first can save you money on a time-consuming and expensive canvas waterproofing treatment.
It will become more waterproof when it has been allowed to dry.
Tent waterproofing with a tarp
Cotton canvas is used to construct some of the most elegant and long-lasting tents for camping and glamping. Bell tents and teepee tents, for example, are extremely robust and function well in inclement conditions. Because of the structural design and the robustness of the canvas fabric, this great performance may be attributed to both factors. In order to make a highly waterproof fabric, cotton canvas utilizes the inherent qualities of the fibers. Campers have been using cotton canvas for ages.
Rather than being defective, this is because the waterproofness of cotton canvas actually improves after being exposed to water once it has been wetted.
So, before you spend money and time on a time-consuming and expensive canvas waterproofing treatment, consider getting your tent wet first!
ADVICE FOR WATERPROOFING CANVAS: Before you go camping, set up your tent in your lawn and give it a nice soak with the water from your garden hose. It will become more waterproof when it has dried.
How to Waterproof a Tent: 6 Tips (and Tons of Tricks) to Keep You Dry
You’re looking forward to your forthcoming camping vacation and are hoping for clear skies to accompany you. But what if it starts to rain? Please do not fret as this piece will teachyou how to waterproof a tent in addition to including 6 recommendations and a slew of methods that will keep you dry.
How to Waterproof a Tent: 6 Tipsto Keep You Dry
When the thunder rumbles overhead, it’s probably not the best moment to ponder about how to waterproof a tent. Instead, look into the faces of your children as they ask, “Will the tent leak?” Ask anyone who has spent a night outside while listening to-drip-drip-drip that that is the worst way to spend a night in the great outdoors. Not only that, but it’s also the most expedient method to turn your vacation into a disaster. Related: How to put up a tent in the rain (with pictures) All of these issues may be resolved by waterproofing your tent before you leave, and we have you covered.
- When the thunder rumbles overhead, it’s probably not the best moment to ponder about how to waterproof a tent. Instead, look into the faces of your children as they ask, “will the tent leak?” Ask anyone who has spent a night outside while listening to-drip-drip-drip that that is the worst way to spend a night in the fresh air. You may transform your vacation into a disaster in the blink of an eye. Related: How to put up a tent in the rain: 15 helpful hints. The solution to all of these issues is to waterproof your tent before you leave, and we have you covered. The following questions are most likely on your mind.
We’ll get to such questions later in this piece, but first, let’s look at how to waterproof a tent and its rain fly. Precautionary note: Before you begin waterproofing your tent, make sure to determine what type of fabric it is constructed of. This article is mostly concerned with synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon. Natural fibers may necessitate a different approach and set of items than those described here. Here are six pointers, as well as a slew of ‘how to’ instructions, to assist you.
1. Check the entire tent, seals and rain fly
In the event that you fail to thoroughly inspect the entire tent, you may believe you are in fine shape just to discover seeping or leaking in unexpected locations. As a result, do a comprehensive examination to avoid unpleasant surprises. The fabric of modern tents retains its waterproofing for an extended period of time. However, if you have a well-used tent or if you are the sort who believes that it is always “better to be safe than sorry,” you will want to inspect the fabric before each camping trip.
It is possible for a tent to leak in three different places:
- In the event that you fail to thoroughly inspect the entire tent, you may believe you are in fine shape just to discover seeping or leaking in unexpected locations. In order to avoid unpleasant surprises, do a comprehensive examination. It takes a long time for new tent fabrics to lose their waterproofing. In the case of an older tent or if you are the kind who believes that it is always “better to be safe than sorry,” you should inspect the fabric before each journey. Waterproofing your gear on a regular basis will also help to increase its lifespan. It is possible for a tent to leak in three locations:
Read this article to learn how to correctly stake a tent (12 tips)
2. Check every time you go camping
Read this for more information: How to correctly stake a tent (12 tips)
- Set up your tent on a bright and sunny day. Set it up in the backyard with the kids to make it more enjoyable. Take a hold of the garden hose and adjust the nozzle to a fine mist spray setting
- Spray the tent while the children are inside. Their job is to inspect the interior of your tent for any signs of water leaking through the seams or seeping through the walls.
Set up your tent on a bright, sunny day. Set it up in the backyard with the kids to make it more enjoyable for everyone. Pull out the garden hose and adjust the nozzle so that it sprays a light mist; The kids are in a tent, so spray them down. They are your little tent spies, examining the interior for any signs of water escaping through the seams or seeping through the walls.
3. Check your fly separately
Set up your tent on a sunny day. Set up in the backyard with the kids to make it more enjoyable. Take a hold of the garden hose and adjust the nozzle to a fine mist spray setting. Spray the tent while the children are inside it. They are your little tent spies, examining the inside for any signs of water escaping through the seams or seeping through the walls.
4. Choose the right waterproofing
As previously stated, the tent is susceptible to leakage in three areas: the seams, the fabric, and the rain fly.
Each of these regions requires a particular type of sealant/waterproofing treatment. As a result, you’ll need to figure out which one is best for your leaking tent. For more information, please see the “how to section,” which follows this section.
5. Wash all gear before waterproofing it
Tents may leak in three places, as previously mentioned: the seams, the fabric, and the rain fly. Each of these regions requires a different type of sealant or waterproofing. In order to determine which one is appropriate for your leaky tent, you must first determine which one it is not. The “how to section” will provide further information about this.
6. Consider waterproofing your new tent
Many campers believe that new tents only have waterproofing applied to crucial sections (the floor and the rain fly), so if you’re in question, applyNikwax to the tent and rain fly before you use your new tent to see whether your suspicions are correct. More information on how to do so is provided below.
How to Waterproof a Tent: Seams, Fabric, FloorRain Fly
Many campers believe that new tents only have waterproofing applied to crucial sections (the floor and the rain fly), so if you’re in question, applyNikwax to the tent and rain fly before you use your new tent to see if this is correct. More information on how to do so may be found below the video.
- Having a clean, dry location to work is essential. Unless the sealant comes with an applicator, you’ll need a small or medium-sized paintbrush. A high-quality sealer such as Gear Aid – Seam Grip WP Sealant Adhesive is recommended. If you prefer to wear gloves, you can do so.
How to Seal the Seams of Your Tent:
- It is necessary to have a clean and dry working environment
- Unless the sealant comes with an applicator, a small or medium-sized paint brush will suffice. The use of a high-quality sealer such as Gear Aid – Seam Grip WP Sealant Adhesive is recommended. If you desire to wear gloves, you can do so
Some individuals choose to seal the seams on the inside of the tent, while others choose to seal them on the outside, and still others choose to seal them on both. It’s entirely up to you; just make sure to adhere to the product’s directions. This video will give you a better understanding of how simple it is to seam seal your tent’s seams and floors. However, we recommend that you remove the rain fly so that you can more easily access all of the seams of your tent at the same time. When you’re through with your tent, you may close up your rain flay using tape.
- You may see it on YouTube.
- If the tear is small, you might use tape to hold it together on the other side while applying the sealant on and around the tear.
- Depending on the degree of the rip, you can apply a second coat of sealant after the first (8 – 10 hours) has dried to seal the tear.
- The following product is recommended for sealing tent seams: Seam Grip FC Seam Sealant is a fast-curing seam sealant.
- Many people prefer to apply the lotion with a little paintbrush or sponge brush rather than the brush that comes with the product.
- This product is suitable for materials such as canvas, nylon, polyester, and vinyl.
- For a more demanding application, Seam Grip WP Sealant Adhesive is a good choice.
- Although the product claims to last 8 hours, campers claim it lasts at least 24.
- This sealer may be able to withstand those minor rips better than the product mentioned above.
Check Amazon for the most up-to-date pricing information. According to the previous section, if your seam tape is peeling away, you may need to remove it before applying seam sealer. Depending on how badly it’s pealing, the answer will vary.
How to Waterproof Your Tent Floor
Cleaning and waterproofing the floor of your tent: The floor of your tent is sometimes referred to as the bathtub or tub floor since this area of the tent normally extends a number of inches up the walls of the tent. It keeps the seams off the ground and provides an additional layer of protection from water flowing and/or collecting on the ground during heavy rain. If you keep the floor of your tent clean and waterproof, it will help to protect all of your belongings such as sleeping bags, pillows, backpacks, and anything else that may be sitting on it.
- Having a clean, dry location to work is essential. Gloves and, if necessary, a mask
- To clean the area, use a sponge. Product of preference
It is necessary to have a clean and dry working environment; a pair of gloves and, if necessary, a mask Cleaning the area using a sponge; Selecting a product of preference
- Having a clean and dry space to work
- Gloves and, if necessary, a mask are recommended. Using a sponge, clean the area
- Favorite product
It will be demonstrated in the following video how to waterproof the floor of your tent. Waterproofing the bottom of your tent is a good idea. You may see it on YouTube. The following products are recommended for waterproofing your tent floor: Gear Aid Seam Grip in conjunction with TF Tent Fabric Sealant. A newer version of the product seen in the video above may be used on the seams of your tent floor as well as on the seams of your tent walls and ceiling. Despite the fact that it comes with a built-in foam brush to assist with application, campers claim that it is only useful for the seams.
This product is suitable for use with any synthetic fabric.
Check Amazon for the most up-to-date pricing information.
How to Waterproof Tent Fabric
Waterproofing the tent’s fabric and/or frame: The fabric/body of your tent is the most important component. There are many various types of fabrics that may be used to construct your tent; some give privacy and weather protection, while others, such as mesh, do not. Knowing what sort of fabric or material your tent is composed of is vital since different types of sealant are available for different types of fabric or material. When we consider about how to waterproof a tent, it is easy to forget about the tent itself since we believe that the fly would keep us safe from the elements.
In order to be safe, it’s important to waterproof your tent as well, because “better safe than sorry” is always the best policy.
If you are unsure of the material that your tent is constructed of, a short Google search will be of assistance.
To avoid wasting time and money on the wrong product, it is worth the three minutes it takes to double-check. As previously said, in this post, we will be concentrating on the most prevalent type of tent fabric, which is synthetic. Here’s everything you’ll need to get started:
- Having a clean, dry location to work is essential. A sponge (in case your tent need cleaning)
- The sealant of your choice for your tent
- Gloves and, if necessary, a mask
Applying the sealant is straightforward and should take less than half an hour once all of the necessary components are in place.
How to waterproof the fabric of your tent:
Nikwax tent and gear solarproof instructions are provided below; please remember to read the product directions thoroughly before using the product.
- Set up your tent on a bright and sunny day
- Make sure your tent is moist
- Apply the sealant in a thin layer, being careful not to get any sealant on the mesh areas of the tent. Paying close attention to the seams in particular. Using a sponge, wipe away any excess product. Allow it to dry completely (unless the manufacturer specifies otherwise) before storing it again.
You’ll see in the following video how simple it is to waterproof the tent fabric. We recommend that you first waterproof the tent before putting up the rain fly. More on it in a moment. Tent fabric made of polyester that is water resistant. You may see it on YouTube. Nikwax TentGear Solarproof is a product that is recommended for sealing tent fabric. All-in-one protection against damaging UV rays that may quickly degrade your tent’s sealant and additional water-repellent, Nikwax TentGear Solarproof is a perfect addition to your camping gear.
Check Amazon for the most up-to-date pricing information.
How to Waterproof Your Rain Fly
You’ll see in the video below how simple it is to waterproof the tent fabric. Installing the rain flap after waterproofing the tent is recommended. For further information, please see the following section: Polyethylene Tent Fabric with Waterproofing Take a look at this video on YouTube Nikwax TentGear Solarproof is a highly recommended product for sealing tent fabric. All-in-one protection against damaging UV rays that may quickly degrade your tent’s sealant and additional water-repellent, Nikwax TentGear Solarproof is a terrific addition to your camping arsenal.
Check Amazon for the most up-to-date prices.
- Having a clean, dry location to work is essential. To clean the rain fly, use a sponge or a moist towel. Gloves and, if necessary, a mask
- A sealant of your choosing
How to check the condition of your rain fly: Set the rain fly up on a sunny day and then lightly spritz it with the garden hose to keep it looking good. The water will bead and flow off fast, revealing if the cloth is still waterproof or whether the water is soaking into the fabric and seeping through it. Assuming your rain fly is leaking, it is time to reseal the seams around the opening. Do you want to know how to put up a dome tent by yourself? a useful hint: Make certain you inspect the fabric to determine which sealant will be required, since synthetic and natural fibers may require different types of sealants.
For the sake of this demonstration, we are waterproofing a polyester (synthetic) rain fly.
(See the video in the preceding section about waterproofing your tent fabric for further information.) These instructions are for the Nikwax TentGear Solarproof, which is sold separately.
- Following the waterproofing and drying of your tent, you may put your rain fly over it. If your rain fly is filthy, thoroughly wipe it with a sponge and allow it to dry completely
- Using the hose, wet the bottom of your rain fly
- Sealant should be sprayed onto the rain fly in a uniform layer. When you have a minute, grab a sponge and brush away any excess sealant so that the sealant may cure in a uniform layer
- Allow for a couple hours of drying time.
Nikwax TentGear Solarproof is a product that is recommended for waterproofing your rain fly. As previously said, this product helps to protect against ultraviolet radiation and makes your cloth water repellent while yet allowing it to breathe.
Nikwax is also kind on the environment because it does not include propellant gases, is non-permanent, and is otherwise ecologically friendly and harmless. It has not been tested on animals and does not contain fluorocarbons. Check Amazon for the most up-to-date pricing information.
Waterproofing and You
That’s all there is to it when it comes to learning how to waterproof a tent: the tips and tricks. You can now be assured that you will have a good time on your next camping trip, no matter what the weather conditions are. Are you going to be waterproof before you go out? Have you ever tried to waterproof your own gear? If so, how did it play out for you? Please share your suggestions by leaving a comment on this post.
How to Re-Waterproof Your Tent
When you join up for Outside+ today, you’ll receive a $50 discount off an eligible $100 purchase at the Outside Shop, where you’ll discover a variety of brand-name goods handpicked by our gear editors. Shelter is one of the most crucial pieces of equipment for your comfort and safety while hiking in the backcountry. In contrast, tents and other items coated with a water-repellent coating become worn out over time as they are used. And leaks may sneak up on you—you normally don’t realize you have a problem until you wake up in a puddle during a thunderstorm, which is when you are most vulnerable.
According to him, the most straightforward method of keeping your tent waterproof is to maintain it properly.
In the meanwhile, here’s what you can do to fix yours if things start to become too sloppy.
When to Re-Waterproof
The first thing you should ask yourself is whether or not your tent need any repair. In most cases, tents do not require annual maintenance if they are stored and cleaned correctly. The fact that you are getting wet might be due to a variety of factors that do not require repair. If your ground tarp is protruding from below your tent, water can pool underneath you and cause flooding. Water can enter a double-wall tent if the fly is not correctly staked out and adheres to the tent body, resulting in the tent being unusable.
Washing the tent by hand with a mild soap and drying it in the shade is the first step, then tackle each piece one at a time.
Tent seams are often taped at the manufacturing. Over time, the lamination will begin to peel away, enabling water to seep into the structure. If your tent is single-walled, these seams are on the body of the tent; if your tent is double-walled, these seams are on the fly of the tent. You’ll need to reseal them using a silicone sealant designed for this purpose; Young recommends Gear Aid’s Silnet ($8). Turning the tent or fly inside out first will make it easier to apply the glue to the interior of the seam, which will save time later.
Smooth it out with the help of a popsicle stick (you want the thickness of butter on toast, about a millimeter).
Allow the sealant to dry for approximately six hours in the shade after it has been applied. Young has been using the same resealed tent for more than a decade, and it has lasted him that long with proper care.
It is necessary to first examine the tent fly inch by inch for any little tears or rips. If you do manage to locate them, Young advises mending them with Gorilla Tape or Tenacious Tape ($5), both of which are water-resistant options. The waterproofing of the material can be restored after the fly has been repaired. A single-walled tent is likely comprised of a waterproof-breathable material similar to Gore-Tex, which requires a technical waterproofing solution such as Nikwax TX.Direct ($22), which is available at sporting goods stores.
This product increases waterproofing while also preventing solar damage.
Wipe away any excess with a rag and allow it to dry completely.
The Tent Base or Ground Cloth
Because they are in constant touch with the ground, the base of the tent body and the ground fabric are the most susceptible to wear and tear. Fortunately, the procedure of repairing the fly is extremely similar to the process of repairing the fly. Once again, begin by scrutinizing each piece for rips, and then repair them using your preferred waterproof patch. The cloth can then be waterproofed with a spray or by washing it. Allow the tent foundation to dry in the shade with the fly removed.
How to Waterproof a Tent: Helpful Tips for Staying Dry While Backpacking
Yes, you did it—you trekked a dozen kilometers deep into a mountain range, battling bugs, brambles, and some of the most beautiful sights along the way. Congratulations! The trip to your campground was exhausting, but once you arrived, you put up your tent, cooked a nice dinner, and settled down for a good night’s sleep. Your campground isn’t bothered by the approaching rain clouds since you’ve tented in the rain before and always slept comfortably and dry. This time, though, it is the sound of running water that awakens you up at 4 a.m.
It is imperative that you quickly put something over your tent to prevent the water from coming in.
When it comes to camping, nothing spoils a good time quite like a leaking tent.
However, what should you do before to hitting the trail to ensure that this does not happen to you is even more crucial.
What does “Waterproof” Really Mean?
You did it—you trekked a dozen kilometers deep into a mountain range, battling bugs, brambles, and some of the most breathtaking sights imaginable along the way. The trip to your campground was exhausting, but once you arrived, you put up your tent, cooked a nice supper, and settled down for a good night’s sleep to recover. Your campground isn’t bothered by the approaching rain clouds because you’ve tented in the rain before and slept comfortably and dry. Instead of waking you up at 4 a.m., drips of water do so this time.
It is imperative that you quickly put something over your tent to prevent the water from seeping inside it.
Something as simple as a leaky tent may completely derail an otherwise perfect camping experience.
So, what can you do to get your tent back in working condition? However, what should you do before to hitting the trail to ensure that this does not happen to you is maybe more crucial. Learn how to waterproof a tent like an expert by reading our article.
How Does Waterproof Fabric Work?
Typically, waterproof fabric is constructed of many layers of synthetic material. The specs and layers of waterproof fabric produced by various manufacturers will change, but they will all have at least two layers in common. Outside textiles for camping gear are often made of nylon or polyester, which are not waterproof but are water resistant and feel good to the touch despite not being completely waterproof. Immediately behind it is a coated membrane, which is often constructed of polyurethane.
The fabric’s exterior layer has been coated with a Durable Water Repellent (DWR), which makes it completely waterproof.
When all of the layers are joined, you’re left with a fabric that is both breathable and entirely water-resistant.
What Causes a Tent to Lose its Waterproofness?
During their lifetime, tents, outerwear, and other waterproof textiles are worn down by dirt and oil particles that become embedded in the fabric, and the sun’s fading and eroding effect on the fabric’s surface. With continuous usage, the polyurethane coating on the outside of the tent fades and loses its effectiveness, and after a few summers in your tent, you may notice that it isn’t holding up as well against rain as it used to. The same is true for water-resistant coats, jeans, stuff sacks, and backpacks, among other things.
They’re normally fairly durable, but once the seam taping begins to wear away, water will accumulate around the seams and begin to leak through, thereby ending the game.
The good news is that you may quickly and economically restore the waterproofing properties of your tent to its original condition.
How to Waterproof a Tent
During their lifetime, tents, outerwear, and other waterproof textiles are worn down by dirt and oil particles that become embedded in the fabric, and the sun’s fading and eroding effects on the fabric’s surface. As the polyurethane coating on the tent’s outside wears away and loses its effectiveness with frequent usage, you may notice that your tent isn’t as water-resistant as it used to be after a few of summers in it. Similarly, waterproof coats, trousers, stuff bags, and back packs should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.
They are normally fairly durable, but if the seam taping begins to wear away, water will begin to pool around the seams and begin to soak through, and the game is up for them.
Fortunately, you may restore the waterproofing properties of your tent at a reasonable cost and with little difficulty. As an example, consider the following.
Supplies You’ll Need
- Oil-based rubbing alcohol is used to clean tent seams and surfaces in order to remove oil, grime, and other particles that inhibit proper sealing. Cloths, both wet and dry
- To clean the tent and remove dirt and grease, use water and soap. The use of DWR tent waterproofing spray, which is readily available online or at your local camping supply store
- Seam sealer, which works in a similar way to domestic superglue and is simple to get by online or at an outdoor-oriented store
Seal The Tent Seams
Oil-based rubbing alcohol is used to clean tent seams and surfaces to remove oil, grime, and other particles that interfere with the sealing process; rubbing alcohol is also used to disinfect tent seams. Cloths, both wet and dry Cleaning the tent using water and soap to get rid of dirt and grease; It is simple to acquire DWR tent waterproofing spray online or at your local camping supply store. This product, which is similar to domestic superglue and may be found online or at an outdoor-oriented store, seals seams.
- Cleaning tent seams and surfaces using rubbing alcohol to remove grease, grime, and other particles that inhibit efficient sealing
- Cloths that are both wet and dry
- Cleaning the tent using water and soap to remove dirt and grease
- The use of DWR tent waterproofing spray, which may be purchased online or at your local camping supply store
- Seam sealer, which works in a similar way to domestic superglue and is easy to get by online or at an outdoor-oriented store.
The seams of your tent will stay entirely secure and watertight for many years after they have been properly installed. The majority of the time, sealing your tent seams is a one-time, permanent solution. The seams will only need to be resealed once every 8-10 years unless you’re trekking in tough circumstances for months at a time.
Restore Waterproof Surfaces
It’s time to recoat your tent’s urethane coating with a new layer of durable water repellent (DWR) coating to keep it looking as good as new. This will extend the life of the tent by several years and only takes approximately 20 minutes to complete, excluding drying time. If you believe your old, trail-worn tent may benefit from a fresh coat of DWR, even if it hasn’t yet sprung a leak, it’s definitely worth the effort to give it a makeover! Here’s how it’s done:
- Set up your tent as soon as possible. When your tent is fully put up, either in your garage or garden, the quickest and most effective approach to refresh its DWR is to wash and wipe the tent clean. It is recommended that you wash your tent after each lengthy journey as part of your standard post-trek procedure after each trip. Preventing dirt and oil from getting into your tent before refreshing the DWR is critical to extending the life of your tent’s DWR coating. Take a towel or sponge and dip it in soapy water before wiping out every surface of the tent thoroughly. Once the tent has been thoroughly cleaned, you can proceed to the following step—there is no need to dry the tent at this point—which is to coat the tent with waterproofing spray (DWR). Apply a generous amount of DWR spray on the tent’s exterior, from top to bottom. Simply spray the tent’s outside surface, and the coating will soak into the fabric and bind with it when the tent is allowed to dry completely. Make certain that you cover every inch of the tent and that no fabric is left untouched
After you’ve completely covered the tent with DWR, wipe it down with a dry towel to remove any excess DWR and ensure that the tent has a clean, even finish. Once this is done, allow it to dry for at least 12 hours or overnight in a dry environment. When you’re finished, your tent will be restored to its original, completely waterproof condition. No more stressing about the weather while planning your next backpacking trip—rain or shine, you’ll be prepared with everything you need to sleep well while on the road!
Tips For Tent Waterproofing
Tent waterproofing can be viewed as a preventative step rather than only a remedy to a particular issue. Because applying a waterproofing treatment is so simple and inexpensive, you may believe that you should reapply it every year at the start of a new camping season. However, this is not the case. It’s perfectly OK to do so, but it’s not frequently essential. In general, good tents for camping will survive for at least four to seven years before they begin to naturally wear down and require a new layer of waterproofing.
Should I Use DWR Spray on My Backpack, Sleeping Bag, etc.?
If your camping gear is comprised of nylon or polyester, it’s likely that it has been treated with a water-repellent coating. Your tent’s waterproofing will decrease with time, and so will the waterproofing of your hammock-compatible sleeping bag, ultralight down sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and backpack over time. It is possible that you may need to update the DWR coating on your backpack and sleeping pad every few seasons, but your sleeping bag should not see enough wear and tear to require this.
In addition, a thick DWR coating will make the sleeping bag stiffer and more difficult to compress into a stuff sack when not in use.
What Seam Sealer and DWR Spray Should I Use?
What you choose to do is mostly up to you; seam sealers and DWR sprays from a variety of manufacturers all employ the same basic components. Because of their long-standing reputation for quality and high level of trust in the backpacking world, many individuals choose Nikwax-branded gear. To be honest, no sealer brand is likely to be notably superior than any other in terms of performance.
Never Have a Leaky Tent Again
The process of learning how to waterproof a tent is almost as simple as the process of actually waterproofing it. Make sure you understand where the leaks are coming from, maintain your tent clean, and replace the DWR and seam sealant every few years to ensure that your tent continues to function at peak levels. Since when have you examined your tent to make sure it isn’t leaking? Do you have any waterproofing recommendations for our readers? Please share your thoughts in the comments box below!
How to Waterproof a Tent: Step-By-Step Guide to Waterproofing
Using these ideas, methods, and strategies, you will be able to have a comfortable and dry camping vacation at any time of the year. The primary function of your tent is to keep you dry. This is why waterproofing is critical for both a working tent and a pleasant camping vacation. Water resistance should be checked on a regular basis in all tents, from the cheapest pop-up to the most expensive camping tent. You’ll need to waterproof your tent from time to time if you want to ensure that you remain dry while camping.
- So, what is the best way to waterproof a tent?
- Everything you need to know about waterproofing tents will be covered in this post, including how to waterproof a tent fly and which materials are best for your specific tent.
- This tutorial is written with the novice in mind at all times.
- Let’s get this party started!
Why Do You Need to Waterproof a Tent?
So why would you need to waterproof a tent in the first place? In the first place, being wet makes it difficult to feel comfortable, and staying warm becomes practically impossible. In addition, most of your equipment will not function properly if it has been exposed to water. Sleeping bags and down coats that have been soaked lose their loft and warmth. Blisters are caused by wet hiking shoes. Tents for camping must be waterproofed in order to be effective. The majority of contemporary shelters have sealed seams, however some inexpensive tents do not.
Even with high-end items, the tent coating tends to erode over time and must be reapplied to maintain its effectiveness. One type of repair that is frequently performed is re-waterproofing a tent’s rainfly, which is necessary when the tent’s floor becomes leaky.
Does Waterproofing a Tent Work?
Quick and simple response, “Yes.” Long answer: Yes, but only up to a certain degree. The fact of the issue is that no tent is flawless, no matter how thoroughly the seams are sealed or how many times you use waterproofing spray. In severe weather, even the best-made tent will be subjected to a small amount of water seepage. While a little water in the corners is one thing, sleeping outside in the middle of a rainstorm is something else different! It will significantly limit the quantity of water that gets into your tent during typical rain storms if you waterproof your tent.
Do You Need to Waterproof a New Tent?
It is imperative that you waterproof your tent as soon as possible if the tent seams are not sealed and the tent fabric does not have a coating or treatment applied. This is especially typical with low-cost tents. However, the majority of tents on the market now are at the very least water-resistant. On a lower-end tent, you might want to consider improving the water repellency, but it is not necessarily required.
When Should You Waterproof a Tent (or Re-Waterproof a Tent)?
It’s ideal to wash and maintain your tent just when it’s really essential, rather than on a regular basis or on a predetermined timetable. The frequency with which you will need to re-waterproof your tent will be determined by how frequently you will use it. When you see that the coatings on your tent are becoming worn, you may re-waterproof it. We’ll teach you how to check your tent for this later on in this article.
5 Steps to Waterproof a Tent
To wash your tent, you’ll need the following items: gentle soap, a sponge, a towel, water, a tub, and a shady and dry location outside. You’ll need the following items to repair your tent: Rubbing alcohol, a moist cloth, the appropriate patches, and sealant are all required. It’s important to start out with a clean tent before applying tent sealer spray or re-sealing the seams. When applied to an unclean surface, water repellent materials will not adhere correctly. There are a few things to bear in mind when washing your tent if this is your first time.
- When you use these types of soap, the waterproof coating on your tent fly and fabric will begin to disintegrate.
- Otherwise, you will peel the coating and do more harm to the tent’s waterproofing system.
- Use a soft sponge and towel to clean it rather than putting it in the washing machine or dryer.
- Note: If your tent is brand new or already clean, you may skip this step or just spritz your tent with water and wash it down with a moist towel instead of doing this step.
- Before you begin waterproofing your tent, make sure you address these issues.
- Just make sure to use the appropriate tape for the work at hand.
It is necessary to clip any frayed threads and clean the area with rubbing alcohol before putting any patching tape or patches. A video from REI will walk you through the process of tent repair step-by-step if you’re new to the craft.
Step 2: Identify Problem Areas
If your tent is clean, dry, and in good shape, it’s finally time to consider tent waterproofing. Leaks should be the first thing you look for. Set up your tent outside and spray it down when you’re through. Make careful to let the water flow for at least a few minutes to get the closest representation possible of a real downpour in your home. Those spots where the water is seeping in will require further care. Following that, watch for peeling and delamination of the sealant on the seams and the tent fabric as a sign of a problem (both the fly and the bottom portion of the tent).
It is beneficial to turn the fly inside out on the top of your tent for easy inspection and sealing during the tent’s closing check.
Step 3: Seal Tent Seams
Clean your seams well with rubbing alcohol and remove any big flakes of sealant that have come loose (do not scrape or peel off any sealant that is still firmly bonded to the surface). You’ll be sealing the seams on the underside of the rain fly as well as the interior of the tent during this procedure. To seal the seams, use a tiny brush to apply your sealant onto the seams in a thin coating that is approximately 1 mm in thickness. Make careful to brush away any excess that may have gotten outside of the seams before it has a chance to dry out completely.
Whenever possible, be sure to apply the right sealer for the fabric and coating of your gear.
To determine the product you require, consult the manufacturer or the label on the tent.
Step 4: Refresh Polyurethane Tent Waterproofing
In addition to the seams, the fabric inside your tent fly and ground piece has a lighter water-resistant coating composed of polyurethane or, less typically, silicon that helps to keep the cloth from becoming soaked. Fabric that has become dull and flaky, or that has become drenched with water, can be refreshed by applying another coat of coating. In contrast to tent water repellent spray, this is a spot treatment rather than a general purpose solution. You’ll be spraying it to the sections of your tent that require the greatest protection, such as the underside of your fly and the interior of the tent (and, no, you cannot use the same DWR spray product that you’ll be putting on the outer fly).
To apply the sealant, first clean the afflicted area until it is smooth, then treat it with rubbing alcohol before applying a thin coating of sealant to the affected region.
Continue to keep your gear out of the sun and allow it to dry for at least 24 hours after it has been cleaned. Be sure to inspect the area of the cloth where the fresh coat was applied to ensure that it is glossy and smooth before packaging it away.
Step 5: RainflyFloor DWR Coating
It is necessary to periodically reapply a durable waterproof coating (DWR) on the outside of the tent fly and ground cloth before it can be considered waterproof. In order for water to bead up and flow off the fly instead of soaking through it, the coating must be applied in a certain manner. Due to the fact that this coating doesn’t stay as long as a waterproof sealer for tents and seams, you should anticipate to have to reapply it more regularly. Depending on who you ask, these tent sealing spray treatments can last anywhere from a few months to only a few rainstorms.
Some even feature built-in UV-blockers, which can assist your product stand up to the potentially harmful effects of the sun’s radiation.
Allow the spray to linger for a few minutes before wiping away any excess with a damp towel if necessary.
How to Waterproof a Canvas Tent
It is necessary to periodically reapply a durable waterproof coating (DWR) to the outside of the tent fly and ground cloth before it is completely waterproofed. In order for water to bead up and flow off the fly instead of soaking through it, the coating must be applied in a certain pattern. Due to the fact that this coating does not have the same longevity as a waterproof sealer for tents and seams, you should anticipate to have to reapply it more regularly. This type of tent sealer spray solution can last anywhere from a few months to only a few rainstorms, depending on who you ask.
The sun may be detrimental to your goods, and some products include built-in UV-blockers to protect them.
Remove any surplus spray with a clean towel after allowing it to sit for a few minutes to soak in.
How to Waterproof a Tent With a Tarp
Using a tarp to “waterproof” your tent implies that it will not be truly waterproof, but that does not rule out the possibility of it working. You may read REI’s instructions for a few alternative options for rigging up your tarp to keep you dry without having to completely waterproof your actual tent here.
More Tips for Waterproofing Your Tent (And What to Avoid)
- DOuse your tent with the appropriate supplies. Before you begin sealing your tent, double-check that the sealants you’re using are suitable with the fabric
- When washing your tent, avoid using strong detergents or chemicals. You will damage the waterproof coat and cause more harm than good if you do not leave enough time for things to dry completely. This will demand time and forethought – you may need to wait a few days between each stage to allow everything to dry completely
- DO get the appropriate tent for your trip. Even if a cheap tent is effectively waterproofed, it will not hold up as well as a high-quality tent.
Please see below for our reviews of the finest 4-person tents, 6-person tents, 8-person tents, 12-person tents, huge camping tents, 3-room tents, instant tents, pop-up tents, inflatable tents, water-resistant tents, warm and insulating winter tents, and cabin tents.
Are There Any Downsides to Tent Waterproofing?
No, not at all. A completely waterproofed tent will be less breathable than a non-waterproofed tent, but this is preferable than a damp tent.
However, if you have a new tent or one that doesn’t leak when it rains, waterproofing your tent may not be as vital until you see a significant amount of water flowing into your tent from the outside. Instead, use your money to purchase other wonderful outdoor equipment.
What is the Best Waterproofing Spray for Tents?
I don’t believe that to be the case. It is true that a fully waterproofed tent would be less breathable, yet it is still preferable to a damp tent in some situations. However, if you have a new tent or one that doesn’t leak when it rains, waterproofing your tent may not be as vital until you see a significant amount of water entering into your tent from the ground. Spare your money instead and use it to purchase other fun outdoor accessories.
Conclusion – What to Remember When Waterproofing Your Tent
If you came to this page seeking for information on how to make a tent waterproof, you should now have more than enough suggestions and knowledge to go forth and seal seams with confidence, right? If I were to leave you with one piece of advice, it would be to look up your tent’s manufacturer’s instructions and follow them to the letter. These precautions will pay off in the long run; your tent will reward you and will keep you dry for years to come. Camping is a blast! INFORMATION ABOUT THE AUTHOR Kristi Allen is a woman who lives in the United States.
The North East is where she grew up hiking and backcountry skiing, and she has traveled more than 15,000 miles throughout the United States and Canada on her quest to see every national park.
With intentions to return to Asia in 2021, she is now traveling throughout the United States by van.
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With The Atlas Heart, Mimi hoped to build a community of travelers who were motivated to experience the globe for themselves.
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