For you to enjoy your stay outdoors, you need a reliable tent that should be able to protect you from the elements at all times. Camping is fun but things can go wrong if your tent is not able to keep the outdoor elements at bay.
Water leakage is one of the worst things that can happen when you are out there camping as you will get wet and your belongings will get soaked. Your tent’s interior will get messy and staying at risk.
When a tent is new, its weather protection features function properly but with time the protection wears off. It is no longer able to protect you from the rain and it leaks every time the weather gets worse.
Buying a new one would be an obvious solution. However, if you don’t have the funds to do so, you can waterproof it. I will teach you how to waterproof a tent like a pro.
What can you use to waterproof it?
Waterproofing a tent is not a complex activity and this article highlights the steps that you need to follow. The original coating on your tent should last long but with continued use, it will wear off and it could start to leak when it rains.
When you notice that the tent’s coating is flaking off, it is a good time to reproof it. When the coating wears off, it will not be able to keep water away from the tent’s interior.
You can also perform a simple test to check if your tent is still waterproof. Get a water spray and spray the outside of the tent. If the water beads on the surface, then it will protect you. If it soaks the water, then it is not waterproof and you will need to apply a fresh coating all over again.
How do I waterproof it?
The procedure is very straightforward and you will be able to accomplish the tasks in the following steps.
Ø Clean the tent
Ø Seal the tent’s seams
Ø Apply a fresh coat of urethane coating
Ø Reapply the DWR (durable water repellent) coating
Ø Leave it to dry
Step 1: Clean the tent
Dirt on the surface of the tent will make the coating to stick on the surface. That is why you need to make sure that it is clean before you apply any coating on it. Remove all the solid waste of the tent and use clean water to remove mud and other dirt that is on the material.
Step 2: Seal the seams
The next thing that you need to do is to seal the seams. The seam is the part of the fabric that has been stitched together. The water could pass through the tiny holes if the seams have not been sealed properly.
The seams usually have a waterproof coating but this coating wears off with time. To re-seal the seams, you will have to;
- Set the tent with the inner sections of the seam easily accessible. You will be sealing the seams on their inner side as well as the underside of the tent’s flysheet.
- Clean the seams with a soft piece of cloth that has been dipped in alcohol so as to remove the bits that are falling off.
- Apply the seam sealer on the seams and underside of the flysheet according to the instructions highlighted on the product.
- Leave it to dry.
Step 3: Apply the urethane coating
After sealing the seams, the next thing that you need to do is to apply the urethane coating. The urethane coating on the tent would be falling out at this time and you will need a fresh coat to boost its weatherproof capacity. To apply the fresh coat, you will need to;
- Lay the tent on a flat and dry surface.
- Remove the bits that are flaking off.
- Apply a fresh coat of the tent sealant according to the product’s instructions. You should make sure that you get the right sealant for the best results.
- Leave it to dry.
Step 4: Apply the DWR coating
Then you will need to apply the DWR coating to guarantee your tent’s waterproof ability. The DWR or durable water repellant is what causes water to bead up on the tent’s surface. This prevents it from soaking into the tent. To apply this coating, you will need to;
- Make sure that the flysheet is clean for effective application. Use a water spray to clean the outside of the tent if that is not the case.
- Spray the DWR on the material evenly.
- Wipe any excess coating with a soft piece of cloth.
- Leave it to dry.
If you still think you need a new waterproof camping tent then you should read my other article and see which ones are perfect in the rain.
Follow my waterproofing method
The steps highlighted above will help you waterproof your tent and restore its ability to protect you and your belongings from the rain. It is cheaper than having to buy a new one all over again and it will increase its lifespan. If you have been wondering how to waterproof a tent, then this article covers all that you need to know on this matter.