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Old 07-29-2014, 10:02 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How to prep your Klim gear for the upcoming season


Wet and wintry weather is just around the corner. But before you head out on your sled, make sure your waterproof GORE-TEX® jackets and bibs/pants are in top form for all your snowmobile adventures
To make sure the performance of your waterproof GORE-TEX® jacket and pants are ready for the upcoming season, ensure you wash and properly care for your prized threads. But don’t just toss your GORE-TEX® jacket into the wash with your pile of dirty undies: Take a minute to review how to clean and care for it so you don’t find yourself reinvesting in jackets season after season.
Washing GORE-TEX Jackets and Pants – Why Bother?
GORE-TEX® fabrics are highly specialized. In addition to a unique construction, they are made with a DWR (durable water repellant) treatment on their face. This treatment penetrates the fibers of the fabric, which allows water to bead up and roll off the fabric’s surface rather than being absorbed. This ensures a high level of water resistance – an extra layer of protection in addition to the waterproof GORE-TEX® membrane below the surface fabric.
However, with heavy use and time this treatment will wash or wear out. Dirt, sweat and sunscreen are just a few of the things that can also decrease the effectiveness of the DWR treatment and cause your garment to “wet out.” “Wetting out” is when the DWR treatment on the surface of your waterproof apparel has worn off, allowing the liquid to saturate the garment above the GORE-TEX® membrane and making you feel clammy, damp or wet. Fortunately, proper care and washing can help restore both the DWR treatment and its capabilities.
Dirt and oils from sweat – often found stained around the collar – can greatly affect the performance of your GORE-TEX® jacket; how often you use it and abuse it really dictates the frequency of cleaning. Keep in mind, proper washing can increase the garment’s performance and longevity. If you’re using waterproof jackets for hiking or high output activities like snowmobiling and ski touring, we recommend you wash your jacket more frequently.
Time to Wash
When it’s time to wash, first close all the zippers – pockets, pit zips, main center zipper – and release any tension on the draw cords.
Pick a liquid, free-rinsing soap to use on your garment. (We recommend Nikwax Tech Wash®, a product specifically designed to clean waterproof fabrics and restore their technical properties.) Do not use powder detergents, and steer clear of products with surfactants, detergents, bleaches, softeners, conditions, perfumes – these can contain waxes or oils or can be hydrophilic, or water-absorbing. These ingredients have the opposite effect of the DWR treatment and will affect the performance of the garment by adhering to the fabric and reducing the ability to breathe and repel moisture. This even includes dryer sheets. If you only have normal laundry soaps to use, make sure you rinse the garment a second time to get rid of any residue from the cleaners.
Next, machine wash your GORE-TEX® garments – in a front loader, if possible – on a warm cycle with temps around 105 degrees; permanent press is an ideal setting. Choose a cycle that rinses the garment twice to ensure any oils or chemicals are cleared out of the garment and then line dry or tumble dry on a warm, gentle cycle for roughly 40 minutes. The heat from the dryer will reactivate the DWR treatment.
Reactivating the DWR treatment on your GORE-TEX® Jackets
If you find your jacket wetting out, the original DWR treatment might need to be reactivated. First, tumble dry the garment for 20 minutes on a warm cycle or iron the garment on a warm setting placing a towel between the garment and the iron. This can reactivate the treatment – the heat encourages the activation of the water repellant properties.
If that doesn’t work, it might be time to replace the original treatment. Before you ditch your threads for brand new ones, try to restore your garment’s functionality by applying a new water-repellant treatment – either a surface spray-on product or wash-in product. Again, we recommend Nikwax TX.Direct® Spray-On or ReviveX can easily restore the DWR performance of your waterproof apparel. When applying a DWR concentrate on the high wear areas like the seat, knees, chest and arms that are more exposed to the elements when snowmobiling.
For more information on caring for GORE® products, visit the GORE® website.

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