Footwear Care Part One
Once a year or so give all your boots & outdoor footwear an overhaul to keep them in tip top condition, so they last for years.
In part two, we'll look at cleaning, conditioning & re-proofing.
First off, remove the laces and the insoles / footbeds.
Have they lost all their cushioning under the heel, ball of the foot and toes? If so treat yourself to a new pair.
If they are OK but a bit smelly you should be able to clean them in the washing machine with ordinary washing powder or liquid. Alternatively hand wash with a detergent.
Are they frayed and tatty? If yes, replace them. If you get new ones take the old ones to compare the length to and get an extra pair to keep in your rucksack as spares.
Otherwise, soak & clean laces in warm water and pure soap (e.g. Tech Wash®) not washing up liquid which will make the laces hold water next to the leather in the wet. Rinse well and hang over a radiator to dry.
These can be rinsed with lukewarm water and the fabric surface can be cleaned gently with Sandal Wash or a mild detergent. Rinse and leave to dry.
Peat soils and cow muck can attack some rubber soles as well as leathers so clean off the soles to where it joins the upper. Under cold running water, brush away mud and muck using a nail brush or washing up brush. Remove any stones stuck in the tread. Finally check for any splits or damage.
Tap the heel of the boot on the ground and tip out any grit from the inside of boot. This grit can grind away and damage linings such as Gore Tex ®. Sweep your hand around the inside to remove any last bits.
If your Gore Tex ® lining goes all the way underneath the insole, then you can fill the boots with lukewarm water to half an inch below the lowest point of the Gore Tex ® fabric. Soak for 2-3 mins to draw out salt from sweat then tip away. Apply a little Tech Wash ® on a cloth and work into the fabric lining to remove body oils. Rinse thoroughly and pack with newspaper to dry out, replacing the damp paper regularly.
If your boots don.t have a complete waterproof lining, then don.t soak them. Rub a Tech Wash ® solution into the fabric and sponge out being careful not to over-wet the insides.
If you have leather lined boots, you can wipe around the inside of the boot with a damp cloth to remove sweat from the lining.
In part two, we look at cleaning, re-proofing & conditioning.
For more advice on cleaning & re-proofing visit www.nikwax.com
If you have any questions about cleaning, proofing or UV protection for tents contact firstname.lastname@example.org