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Cleaning breathable jackets

spongtasticspongtastic Posts: 2,651
edited August 2010 in MTB general
What's the best way to clean a breathable jacket? haven't worn mine for ages and it's covered in muck after this morning.
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  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    assuming you mean breathable and waterproof

    any one of the following, as what's required

    - leave to dry dust off when bone dry with a light clothes brush
    - wipe off with just damp cloth when both wet and dry
    - proper washing with NikWax Tech Wash
    - proper washing with Nikwax Tech Wash and Nikwax TX.Direct

    is how it goes for me
  • pte1643pte1643 Posts: 518
    Tech Wash here aswell.

    Smells nice too. :lol:
  • robertpbrobertpb Posts: 1,866
    As blister pus says. :D
    Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"
  • NorthwindNorthwind Posts: 14,675
    I hose mine down straight after riding, and that's it, wipe with sponge to remove stubborn muck. If it gets really horrible it gets washed with nikwax.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • wordnumbwordnumb Posts: 847
    The answer you're looking for is: treat yourself to a new one.

    I do same as Northwind says.
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    What you all forgot to mention is set your washing machine to run a wash with just water before you wash anything, scrub your washing machine drawer out and get rid of any old detergent. Failure to do this will make it utterly pointless in nikwaxing anything.
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Also get the spray nikwax rather than the wash in one. Much better.

    As a rough guide you should use around half the bottle reproofing each jacket.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    Mr Wu wrote:
    What you all forgot to mention is set your washing machine to run a wash with just water before you wash anything, scrub your washing machine drawer out and get rid of any old detergent. Failure to do this will make it utterly pointless in nikwaxing anything.

    some of us are already in the 21st century and never touch those drawer compartments so it doesn't even apply.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    Mr Wu wrote:
    Also get the spray nikwax rather than the wash in one. Much better.

    As a rough guide you should use around half the bottle reproofing each jacket.

    waste of money when i can buy the tech wash and tx direct which'll last 5 times longer and do the same job
  • mobilekatmobilekat Posts: 245
    The spray on stuff is superior, as when you chuck a jacket in the wash with the wash on stuff a few things happen....

    1, Can trash your washing machine, as you will get a layer of re-proofer in hte machine too.
    2, breathable fabric is meant to let air/water out, if you reproof the inside of it it doesnt do this very well and you will start to ruin the jacket.
    3, some re-proofers can be not the nicest thing to have against your skin.

    I never knew this lot until a spent time helping at a horse rug laundry and learnt way more about breathable fabric, and washes than I ever thought I wanted too!

    Also learn to NEVER wash waterproof clothes with washing powder as it will truly screw them up!
    Wheeze..... Gasp..... Ruddy hills.......
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    1, Can trash your washing machine, as you will get a layer of re-proofer in hte machine too.
    god knows what cycle you have yours on but mine's well and truly rinsed out a third the way round the dial
    2, breathable fabric is meant to let air/water out, if you reproof the inside of it it doesnt do this very well and you will start to ruin the jacket.
    nope that's not true either, my jacket is designed to be washed using things like tech wash
    3, some re-proofers can be not the nicest thing to have against your skin.
    if i've got my jacket on very little of my skin touches the jacket.
    Also learn to NEVER wash waterproof clothes with washing powder as it will truly screw them up!
    that is true though
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Mr Wu wrote:
    What you all forgot to mention is set your washing machine to run a wash with just water before you wash anything, scrub your washing machine drawer out and get rid of any old detergent. Failure to do this will make it utterly pointless in nikwaxing anything.

    some of us are already in the 21st century and never touch those drawer compartments so it doesn't even apply.

    you might not but I'm sure at some point you use tablets/ liquid etc and if you don't I
    sure your partner does. What I'm getting at is if you have detergent on your machine, anywhere, and it gets onto your waterproof gear not only will it stop their waterproof ability due to clogging it was also invalidate any warranty (goretex and rab) it's the first thing they check for, followed by sweat contamination.
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    edited August 2010
    Mr Wu wrote:
    Also get the spray nikwax rather than the wash in one. Much better.

    As a rough guide you should use around half the bottle reproofing each jacket.

    waste of money when i can buy the tech wash and tx direct which'll last 5 times longer and do the same job

    Wrong I'm afraid. Tx direct will wash in at the same ratio as the spray if used correctly so it's no different. The spray is much better as nothing is removed by any final rinse on the machine nor any rubbing on the inside of the drum.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    Mr Wu wrote:

    you might not but I'm sure at some point you use tablets/ liquid etc and if you don't I
    sure your partner does. What I'm getting at is if you have detergent on your machine, anywhere, and it gets onto your waterproof gear not only will it stop their waterproof ability due to clogging it was also invalidate any warranty (goretex and rab) it's the first thing they check for, followed by sweat contamination.

    balls Wu, balls. :lol:

    all gets power washed rinsed out during one of the cycles.

    but i do take the point :)
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    Mr Wu wrote:
    Mr Wu wrote:
    Also get the spray nikwax rather than the wash in one. Much better.

    As a rough guide you should use around half the bottle reproofing each jacket.

    waste of money when i can buy the tech wash and tx direct which'll last 5 times longer and do the same job

    Wrong I'm afraid. Tx direct will wash in at the same ratio as the spray if used correctly so it's no different. The spray is much better as nothing is removed by any final rise on the machine nor any rubbing on the inside of the drum.

    well no because tx direct is chemically designed to be washed in and take the rinsing it gets and you still use less of it than the spray but i have a feeling the spray lasts longer
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Maybe on your washing machine mate but not on a lot of machines.

    You'd be surprised at what stays in your washing machine drum. If ever in doubt do your washing as normal then just run a normal wash. Them bubbles in the empty drum, that's your left over detergent.

    At the expense of one of my mountaineering jackets I learnt all about washing kit properly. Goretex's thing of keeping you dry or replacing it isn't as straight forward as it sounds. If they find one spec of detergent on your kit then it's game over.
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Apparently tumble drying is supposed to help too.

    Unfortunatley my "tumble dryer" involves my bird running round the garden in circles waving my jacket about :-)
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Blister - have you ever tried any of the nikwax tent/rope reproofer?

    Not sure how true it is but I've heard if you have something that isn't waterproof, say a fleece or jeans, washing with the above is supposed to make them resiliant?
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    tumble drying is sposed to 're-invigorate' the waterproofing and is well worth a shot before you resort to washing or spraying - if you've got a real dryer (i haven't). Not used the other reproofer but i've heard the same and i've had limited success on a pair of pants using tech wash and tx direct. i found it highly amusing to have waterproof pants for a very short period of time, pants were tight weave btw.
  • milfredomilfredo Posts: 322
    ' Tell you want peeps, you scared the pap out of me after I read this post!!

    I have Endura Stealth jacket, long bibs and some Event shorts and had always followed the washing instructions that came with the clothes: to wash with normal detergent at 40 degs, no conditioner & drip dry only. And only after prolonged use, use some Nikiwax or other 'proofer' to re-invigorate the fabric.

    I must admit that the jacket on the last torrential down-poor started to not allow the water to bead up and the sorts got wet after about two hours in the deluge but I just read this as a sign that I should reapply the in-wash Nikiwax and treat with spray. After reading this post I thought that I may have ruined all my kit through incorrect washing but I don't think that is the case after checking the eVent website on looking after the garments.

    Will
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    If your kit is wetting out, i.e not beading water then there is a good chance it has either sweat or detergent contamination.

    eVent material requires washing a lot more than goretex. Goretex material has a thin layer on the inside to stop body oils penetrating the actual fabric. eVent doesn't have this hence why they require washing more often. It is also why the eVent material is considered to "let sweat out" better than goretex.

    That said, IMO goretex is a far better material. I've a few Pro shell jackets and one performance shell jacket. The pro shell is excellent. The performance shell isn't as breathable I find. The bottoms I use for climbing/mountaineering are a mixture of Gtex and eVent, all 3layer material. Both perform well mainly I think due to you having as much vapour to release plus they both have chimney venting, which for cycling is perfect.

    eVent I feel has yet to get a solid footing on the market. GTex is proven. If ever your in doubt have a look in Ellis Brighams or Snow and Rock stores at the Arc'teryx/marmot/berghaus/northface/mountain equipment range. It's all goretex. The only firms I know that use eVent is RAB, dhb and I think endura.

    I still think it takes the pish a bit these bike firms selling "waterproof" jackets for as much as they do when you can actually get a decent mountaineering jacket in goretex for a few quid more. The "cycling" fit (aside from perhaps the Gore bike wear) of the jackets is not really that different from an climbing jacket. Fitted around the body, dropped tail.... Plus most decent mountain jackets have pit zips which on a bike are excellent.
  • milfredomilfredo Posts: 322
    Scared again... :)

    What do you think I should do to get them back on track then as I've always just washed them normally?
  • Mr WuMr Wu Posts: 1,238
    Don't be.

    You "can" supposedly wash eVent in normal washing liquid. Key word being liquid. It's stating the obvious to not use powder. As to which liquids you can use I honestly don't know. As a rough idea I use nikwax tech wash for all my expensive gear. I use ecover (available from asda) sensitive wash liquid for cheaper/older gear. It doesn't smell of anything but will remove stinks from your clothes. Make sure if you do get it that you get the sensitive one as the normal one smells of lavender!

    This is the stuff (it's called delicate not sensitive)

    http://www.ecover.com/gb/en/Products/La ... was+UK.htm


    That's what i use for my trousers/tshirts/fleeces etc.

    Goretex gear use nikwax. eVent, I personally would use nikwax or graingers wash.

    Sadly in not convinced with the eVents long term waterproofness, to date I've send back three jackets made of the material due to it wetting out, two were latok alpine jackets £210 each and one was a momentum jacket £145. One of the Latoks they said was detergent damaged and it wasn't covered due to me not washing properly. The other two I was sent replacements from each respective store. Suggesting to me that they must get it often. No problems with my gortex gear at all.

    If you are looking for cheapish gortex jackets then have a look on a well known auction site for a seller called LeSports or LesSports something like that. There a proper business that get adidas goretex and Nike goretex jackets in which look like they are samples etc. Still goretex like. Adidas and Nike are starting to branch out into the mountain scene so I think they are still finding there feet so to speak. If you search for adidas gortex on the well known auction site some should come up. Adidas Terrex is the outdoor range and Nike ACG respectively.

    If you want to reproof the gear you already have, try what has been said before. Run an empty wash to help to clear your machine. Nikwax item/s and don't be tight with it! Then use the spray on reproofer. As a rough guide you should use half to three quarter the bottle per jacket. Less for shorts. Tumble dry on lowish heat setting. Keep your eye on it too, if it gets too hot in there you risk melting the taped seams!

    If all that fails you've really nothing to lose so I would try the wash in tent and rope reproofer. I've heard it can make unwaterproof things repel water rather well. How true it is I don't honestly know. Worth a shot though. Let me know how you get on.
  • milfredomilfredo Posts: 322
    I put my eVent shorts and Stealth Endua jacket on a wash this morning (after running an empty wash first) with a LARGE dose of Graingers a and low to medium dry. I have another pot of Graingers in case I need to run it once more and some Nikwax and Graingers spray on to give them a little further boost. I'm sure with a combination of this onslaugh of products I'll be able to get some water-proofing back. Gulp.
  • milfredomilfredo Posts: 322
    I can report that it is all good!

    Washed with Graingers after a soak in plain water. After flicking water on the garments it beaded nicely but I had a can of Graingers spray on so liberally applied that to both the shorts and jacket.

    First ride in the rain and they performed flawlessly! I have some TX-Direct and will get some Tech wash for next time but luckily I haven't ruined my treasured clothes. I will be much more careful in the future!!!
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