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Fall jacket water resistance (dwr)

dump

Turbo Monkey
Oct 12, 2001
5,849
658
What’s the best way to get the water resistance back on a fall jacket/shell coated with a dwr? It used to keep me dry in the rain for a good 2 hrs, but on a recent ride after about 10 mins, I was soaked. Is there a product that folks would recommend to get it back the way it was? Is a great jacket otherwise. Thanks.
 

Nick

My name is Nick
Sep 21, 2001
17,354
5,217
behind you, don't wait up.
1. Try to avoid ever washing your waterproof gear with detergent.
2. NixWax is the best I found but it's never as good as new. Follow the directions, use the dryer, or bring a plastic bag?
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
Nikwax is the brand I always hear recommended
So they said at rei that I could just spray the stuff on and let it dry and it would be the same as washing with the stuff, but without coating the inside as well. I've done two jackets like this now and I can't say it does real good, it's pretty "meh". I may try washing next, but I'm not impressed.

To wash waterproof stuff, I'll often wash it in the shower with some shampoo, and by often I mean every once in a long while.
 

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
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1. Try to avoid ever washing your waterproof gear with detergent.
2. NixWax is the best I found but it's never as good as new. Follow the directions, use the dryer, or bring a plastic bag?
On point #1 - follow the manufacturers directions for laundering
 

dump

Turbo Monkey
Oct 12, 2001
5,849
658
Will give the NixWax stuff a go. Have to say I never paid much attention to the label, and just used a very mild detergent. Live and learn. Thanks all.
 

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
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I've done two jackets like this now and I can't say it does real good, it's pretty "meh". I may try washing next, but I'm not impressed.
to Nick's point, aftermarket / non factory treatings just aren't as good. they'll extend the life of the product, but never make it "new"
 

mykel

Turbo Monkey
Apr 19, 2013
2,511
1,113
sw ontario canada
FWIW

Nikwax TX is ok.
It does work, but not nearly as well as the OG.
It also seems to wear out quickly.

I found Grangers to be a bit better than Nikwax.

There is also Revivex and Tectron as well off the top of my head.
Not heard anything about Tectron, and have heard mixed about Revivex from ok to good.

This is all for the spray-on re-proofers.

I think a lot of the variations on effectiveness that you hear about have to do with the type of fabric, age, wear, cleanliness, staining and especially type of original DWR.
 

eric strt6

Resident Curmudgeon
Sep 8, 2001
16,481
5,748
directly above the center of the earth
one of the other issues is that the nylon relaxes and makes places for the water to micro pool. Breathable fabrics rely on the inside having a higher vapor pressure than the outside to drive water vapor out. saturated nylon gets the process reversed. So you either have to throw the garment in the dryer or iron it at low to tighten up the threads for the nicwax or other products to work. At least that's what I was taught while working in the industry
 
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dump

Turbo Monkey
Oct 12, 2001
5,849
658
I don't think I've ever felt the need to wash a rain jacket...
It’s a soft shell that I wore a lot and sweated through quite a bit. Nice jacket... will see how the new proofing goes. Might get relegated to different duty - will see.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
What about that hyper-hyrophobic paint shit that they told us would revolutionize everything and make it so airplanes wouldn't get icing anymore? That was like 15 years ago. WTF?
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
Meh, I wouldn't wear a waterproof jacket for that, just some rubberized shit or something. That's the exact kind of crap that will trash a "waterproof" jacket and in real wet conditions (heavier rain) they'll get overwhelmed anyway. I have a RF vest that is rubberized, perfect. Even if you do manage to retain some water-proofness in a jacket during rain, it's a fairly narrow window IME where you aren't creating your own swamp effect inside and defeating the purpose due to output. It takes some fairly significant rain to cool me enough to wear the jacket in the first place. I know that companies have expensive threads to sell us for enduro shit or whatever, but I consider most of those things more relevant for a long ride that isn't as extreme. I just retired my main Patagonia to backup and got a new waterproof NF for $100, not sure if it was on sale or anything, but I've tried it in the rain a few times already and it works great. I bring an extra dry layer sometimes so I can change into it if I do get too soaked.

But yeah, sometimes you do need to wash that shit. I do outside a bit with a brush and then bring it in the shower and gently clean it.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
The other thing about the nikiwax or whatever, it's supposed to be "applied" by washing in the machine with warm water (to penetrate and bind properly). I haven't tried that yet, but based on my mediocre results so far, I might.
 

Harry BarnOwl

Monkey
Jul 24, 2008
170
37
one of the other issues is that the nylon relaxes and makes places for the water to micro pool. Breathable fabrics rely on the inside having a higher vapor pressure than the outside to drive water vapor out. saturated nylon gets the process reversed. So you either have to throw the garment in the dryer or iron it at low to tighten up the threads for the nicwax or other products to work. At least that's what I was taught while working in the industry
Thanks for sharing, never knew this. Stupid question but I assume you apply Nikwax (or whatever) after getting some heat through it?
 

eric strt6

Resident Curmudgeon
Sep 8, 2001
16,481
5,748
directly above the center of the earth
Now if you want to skip the whole DWR wearing out bullshit go with the Columbia outdry shell. It has no DWR to wear out. I have 4 seasons on mine and the water still beads up on the outside and the breathablity is really good. Oh and the hood will fit over a helmet
 

HardtailHack

used an iron once
Jan 20, 2009
2,554
416
A DWR jacket needs to be clean to work properly. Dirt will breakdown the surface tension of the water and allow it to soak the fabric. Not that big of a problem if there is a membrane.
If the face fabric wets out your perspiration won't go out as intended, but yeah, ash, dirt, anything absorbent, tiny or surfactants will stop the jacket doing its thing properly.

I have learned to not buy a jacket with a textured face fabric as it traps more crap and the DWR just doesn't seem to hold up, oh and you have to ask if a jacket has a 100% waterproof pocket.
After my phone drowned in a pocket with a waterproof YKK zip I complained and the company changed their wording, they said other people had similar issues.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
Now if you want to skip the whole DWR wearing out bullshit go with the Columbia outdry shell. It has no DWR to wear out. I have 4 seasons on mine and the water still beads up on the outside and the breathablity is really good. Oh and the hood will fit over a helmet
Any issues with abrasion from packs, fanny-packs, rubbing, crashes? Seems like that is extremely exposed?
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
39,495
6,174
Sleazattle
Any issues with abrasion from packs, fanny-packs, rubbing, crashes? Seems like that is extremely exposed?
It is a membrane system along the lines of goretex. Probably based off of the expired original goretex patent technology, every major brand has their own version these days.

Membranes=waterproof
DWR=water resistant, it is in the name
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
Would you mind sharing a link to it or a name?
That sounds exactly like what i´ve been searching for for a while now.
I literally wore it a couple days ago to do the DHing thing, but now I have no idea where it's at. When I find it I'll try to remember.
 

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,844
1,475
01776
I had good results refreshing DWR by following the instructions on the label. I think it's a simple cold wash followed by low temp drying, but it helped get me WR back on my "rain coat". That being said, it was NEVER as good as a real rubber rain slicker, so there's that. It it lightweight and packable, so it's a tradeoff. I did hear nikwax was the toolf or the job though.
 

dexter

Turbo Monkey
Sep 23, 2001
3,010
84
Boise, Idaho
Wash it with a WP/ breathable membrane friendly detergent, then wash it 2x more to make sure all the gunk is out. Dry it on a LOW setting to reactivate the DWR and you should be golden.
 

Mo(n)arch

Turbo Monkey
Dec 27, 2010
4,302
1,247
Italy/south Tyrol
On nsmb there was this which I had good results with on my snowboard jacket and bibs.
https://nsmb.com/articles/2-minute-expert-how-gore-tex-works/

Getting back to helping frustrated Gore-Tex customer service reps worldwide, there was an old maintenance adage that said "wash it lots, dry it hot". Essentially still true, with a few caveats. Here, then, is how to care for your Gore-Tex jacket (and other w/b membrane garments).

  1. You should be washing your Gore-Tex* pieces...a lot. Oils in your sweat, dirt, smoke from campfires...it all can clog up the membrane's pores as well as interfere with the DWR's ability to work. Machine wash on a warm cycle. Use a small amount of liquid detergent (or even better, a specific cleaning product like Granger's). No powder detergent, fabric softeners, conditioners, or bleach.
  2. Tumble dry on low - this will reactivate the DWR treatment on your outer fabric. If you don't have a dryer, use an iron on a warm setting with a towel between the iron and your garment. *Do not skip this step*. Eventually that coating will need to be restored. When drying/ironing no longer reactivates your DWR treatment, apply a new water-repellent treatment to the garment’s outer fabric. Once again, use products like Granger's or Nikwax.
  3. Do this often. Once a year at least, depending on how much you use your garment. For mountain biking, where mud is an issue, that should be more like 2-4 times per year. If you get grease or oil on your jacket or shorts, use a grease-cutting dish soap like Dawn or Sunlight with a toothbrush before you wash it in the machine. From personal experience, this works even on stubborn grease stains, but requires some tenacity. Mare sure you rinse well prior to machine washing to ensure that no soap remains.
*Gore-Tex and other w/b membranes all have similar maintenance procedures, but to be safe, always check the instructions for your garment.



https://7mesh.com/gore-tex-product-care

So basically the same as @eric strt6 was telling us.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
11,070
3,155
AK
On nsmb there was this which I had good results with on my snowboard jacket and bibs.
https://nsmb.com/articles/2-minute-expert-how-gore-tex-works/

Getting back to helping frustrated Gore-Tex customer service reps worldwide, there was an old maintenance adage that said "wash it lots, dry it hot". Essentially still true, with a few caveats. Here, then, is how to care for your Gore-Tex jacket (and other w/b membrane garments).

  1. You should be washing your Gore-Tex* pieces...a lot. Oils in your sweat, dirt, smoke from campfires...it all can clog up the membrane's pores as well as interfere with the DWR's ability to work. Machine wash on a warm cycle. Use a small amount of liquid detergent (or even better, a specific cleaning product like Granger's). No powder detergent, fabric softeners, conditioners, or bleach.
  2. Tumble dry on low - this will reactivate the DWR treatment on your outer fabric. If you don't have a dryer, use an iron on a warm setting with a towel between the iron and your garment. *Do not skip this step*. Eventually that coating will need to be restored. When drying/ironing no longer reactivates your DWR treatment, apply a new water-repellent treatment to the garment’s outer fabric. Once again, use products like Granger's or Nikwax.
  3. Do this often. Once a year at least, depending on how much you use your garment. For mountain biking, where mud is an issue, that should be more like 2-4 times per year. If you get grease or oil on your jacket or shorts, use a grease-cutting dish soap like Dawn or Sunlight with a toothbrush before you wash it in the machine. From personal experience, this works even on stubborn grease stains, but requires some tenacity. Mare sure you rinse well prior to machine washing to ensure that no soap remains.
*Gore-Tex and other w/b membranes all have similar maintenance procedures, but to be safe, always check the instructions for your garment.



https://7mesh.com/gore-tex-product-care

So basically the same as @eric strt6 was telling us.
Tried this yesterday and went riding in the rain and...











































Nope. Maybe a teeny bit better, like 10-20%, but nowhere near new. Not beading.