The Best Way to Take Care of Your Hiking Boots

     Looking after your hiking boots will ensure they last a long life and continue to be comfortable on the trail mile after mile. No matter what type of boots you have, they will benefit enormously from frequent cleaning and conditioning. It is especially important to look after leather boots. Leather needs special care and attention in order to retain its high quality. No matter what type of conditions you hike in, proper care will add years to the life of your boots.

After every hike you should brush off any dirt and particles leftover on your boots. Even a little caked on dirt can be incredibly abrasive and damaging to any material. It's not necessary to keep your boots clean while you're hiking (which would be near impossible anyway), but be sure at the end of the each trip you brush away all the particles on the boots.

For really hard, caked-on mud and debris, you can to wash your fabric boots with a little water and non-detergent soap. You can also rinse off leather boots, but it is important not to overdo it. The leather will lose elasticity and become brittle over time from excessive washing and drying.

After a long hike you may find your boots are soggy and damp, whether from hiking in the rain or crossing streams along the way. The best way to dry your boots out is to leave them in a warm, dry spot and let them dry out naturally. Do not place them near a heat source or use a hairdryer to speed up the process as this can damage the adhesive used for the sole of the boots. Instead, you might try placing crumpled up newspaper in the boots to absorb any extra water. Remember to replace the newspaper frequently to help speed up the process.

For older, worn-in boots you may need to waterproof and condition them once in a while. Remember to use products that are specifically designed for use on hiking boots. If you are waterproofing your leather boots, be sure to cover the entire surface area, paying special attention to the seams as these can become porous over time.

Make sure you inspect your laces once in a while so you don't end up with broken laces out on the trail. For other damages, check first to see if your boots have a warranty that allows you to send them in to the company for repairs. If you have older boots that don't have a warranty, you will need to go to a cobbler who specialises in hiking boot repairs. Hiking boots are designed much differently to regular shoes and boots, so it can sometimes be tricky to find someone who has the skill to repair them.

If you follow all these steps when looking after your hiking boots, you should be able to enjoy them for years to come. And finally, if you have an old pair of boots that you have looked after but are still starting to show signs of old age, it may just be time to retire them and treat yourself to a shiny new pair of hiking boots.

Article Source :

Rupert Pennington-Smythe is a passionate article writer for many websites. His keen interest in hiking makes him an expert on hiking boots and he is especially proud to be associated with the Best Hiking Boots Website.

Posted on 2011-05-03, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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