Why do Granger's cleaners work in hard water?
Granger’s cleaners are all detergent based and will work in all types of water. Soap based cleaners won’t offer the same performance - Soaps form a scum in hard water and this scum will not rinse away easily and is known to turn laundry a grayish hue. Detergents react less to minerals in water and do not leave this residue, allowing them to work in all types of water. To see if you live in a hard water area click here. If you would like to learn more about Granger's cleaners and how they work then click here to download our cleaner fact sheet.
Why am I getting wet inside my jacket?
When a 'hard shell' waterproof garment is first purchased the fabric will perform exactly as per the fabric manufacturer’s benchmark tests. The factory will have applied a treatment known as Durable Water Repellency (DWR), a fluorocarbon-based process that positions molecules on the surface in a way that allows the fabric to actively repel water. You’ll have noticed that pleasing beading effect when water falls on a new garment – it collects and rolls off almost like mercury. It means that the exterior of the fabric is remaining dry and able to fulfill its role of carrying moisture vapour from the interior through to the atmosphere. This DWR treatment is designed to remain effective through many cycles of machine washing.
In time your garment fabric is attacked from several different directions. Externally, abrasion will affect the ‘face’ of the fabric, pulling fibres loose and microscopically ‘furring’ the exterior weave. This affects the surface tension of water that lands on the fabric, holds dirt more efficiently and generally degrades the ability of the DWR treatment to repel water.
Internally, even though you’re often not wearing the fabric next to the skin, oils excreted by your body are carried in perspiration vapour through the interior structure of the fabric and deposited inside the coating or membrane. Because these coatings and membranes are the key technologies that allow the fabric to transmit moisture vapour to the outside, any contamination will affect their ability to perform.
So assailed from both sides, modern ‘wonder fabrics’ can begin to lose their original performance. And it’s not just clothing – increasingly boots are constructed using waterproof/breathable membranes and become affected in similar ways.
What to do? Well, the obvious first step is to wash garments. Check the manufacturer’s care guidelines and never use detergents as they are aggressive and seriously affect the fabric. Use of Granger’s products followed by the application of heat to ‘re-set’ the DWR treatment will leave the garment performing as new.
If I have a 'hard shell' garment, how long can I expect the original DWR to last?
This entirely depends on the fabric used by your garment manufacturer. Some are extremely good and last over 10 machine washes, while others will need attention sooner. It also depends on usage - if you're a mountain guide and out every day the garment will get more of a hammering. Generally, just wash according to the garment guidelines until you feel the water repellency is not lasting long enough, then re-proof.
How long will re-proofed DWR last for?
Again, this depends on the proofing product and garment usage. Granger’s proofing technologies replicate the DWR formulation originally applied by fabric manufacturers, so this effectively just restores the original treatment. Logically this should help the garment to retain its water repellency for longer.
How should I look after soft shell garments?
Soft shell fabric technologies also rely on DWR treatments to keep water out, and exactly the same advice applies. Maintaining water repellency is often more essential than with hard shell garments - hard shells usually keep exterior water out even when the DWR is shot, but soft shells really need to retain their water repellency to keep you dry. Apply Granger’s re-proofing products the minute you find that washing is not enough to maintain water beading on the outside.
How should I look after footwear?
With footwear it’s more a question of keeping the outside of the boot clean and using a care treatment that’s specifically designed for the construction, eg. leather or fabric. This maintains the material and gives any internal waterproof/breathable technologies a better chance of retaining their performance.
Can gloves be treated in the same way?
Gloves are similar to boots in that they can be constructed using a waterproof/breathable insert. As the insert is hidden within the product’s construction you can’t directly apply a treatment but keeping gloves and boots clean using manufacturer’s instructions will make sure they give their best for longer.
What about other outdoor gear?
Other gear that requires cleaning and looking after includes tents and rucksacks. Tents are increasingly making use of lightweight fabric technologies that reduce pack weight and rely on effective DWR treatments to keep water at bay. While breathability is not an issue in the same way as garments, dirt and dust will affect the fabric’s ability to repel water therefore washing and reproofing your flysheet will pay dividends.
Rucksacks clearly are not protecting you directly from the elements (unless you’re really in trouble!) but they do protect your gear, including stuff that must remain dry. Very few rucksacks are actually designed to be waterproof using sealed seams, but they do use waterproof coated fabrics which will last longer if kept clean. We recommend you clean your rucksack using Universal Spray Cleaner and reproof with Superpruf.
Rucksacks and tent flysheets can be fully immersed and washed using Granger's Wash-in Cleaner Plus, by hand or in a washing machine. If using a washing machine we advise placing the item in an old pillow case for the wash cycle.
If a rucksacks or flysheet is particularly soiled in a certain area, use Granger’s Cleaner Plus to spot-clean. Simply apply a 50% cleaner/water mix onto a clean cloth and gently work into the soiled area. Make sure you wash the entire surface straight after applying the treatment. Remove any cleaning residue with a clean damp cloth.
Allow the rucksack or flysheet to dry completely before applying Fabsil or Fabsil Gold.
How much Fabsil do I need to waterproof my tent?
When painting on:
- Light weight synthetic fabrics up to 18 square metres per litre.
- Medium weight Canvas up to 7.5 square metres per litre.
Do I have to dry the garment between the wash and proof cycle?
No, it is not essential to dry between washing and proofing.
My washing machine does not have a 30°C heat setting what do I do?
All Granger's wash in products will work at temperatures as low as 30°C so you can use a cool setting or your normal setting. It is a good idea to check your garment care label for the recommended heat setting. The advantage of using a low heat setting like 30°C is that it will save up to 40% in electricity.
Do I really need to tumble dry when using 2in1?
Yes, heat is essential to ensure the 2 in 1 proofing works as intended. If you cannot get access to a tumble dryer then try our 30°C Cleaner and 30°C Proofer.
Do I spray XT to my wet or dry jacket?
Granger's XT can be applied to a garment ether wet or dry however to to ensure an even coverage we recommend that you wash your item in Granger's 30°C Cleaner or use Universal Sray Cleaner and while still damp apply the XT. Our new Granger's XT works with out the need to apply heat however to get the best results tumbledrying on a medium setting will make the waterproofing last longer.