Hiking Boots – Cleaning, Care, And Maintenance

Good quality hiking boots are an investment that can be expected to last a long time, but only if you take care of them. This article will tell you how to take proper care of your hiking boots, from breaking them in to having them resoled, so you will get the most value for your investment.

In this article, I will discuss five main points of proper care and maintenance of your hiking boots:

1. Breaking them in.

2. Waterproofing.

3. Cleaning and general maintenance.

4. Resoling.

5. Knowing when they’ve had it.

Breaking In your Hiking Boots

The purpose of breaking in your hiking boots is to soften them so they will not hurt your feet. They must be made flexible at exactly the places where your feet and ankles bend. The best way to do this is to walk in them. The goal of breaking in your hiking son chong tham cho be tong boots is to do it in short walks, so you don’t find yourself in the middle of the wilderness with blisters and an inflexible pair of hiking boots.

Hiking shoes or day-hiking boots might not need any break-in, but try it just to be sure. Very heavy hiking boots might not actually break in, but wearing them will make your feet grow tougher in the places where the boots refuse to bend.

In either case, what you want to do is to wear your new hiking boots for short periods of time. Wear them around the house, on your morning walk, on your way to work and back (or wear them at work, if your job does not require a lot of walking and if dress codes permit). Wear them on short hikes.

Once the boots are properly broken in, they will feel comfortable as you walk. Then you’re ready to take them on a serious hike.

You may have heard of leaving your new hiking boots out in the weather, or soaking them and wearing them as they dry out, or other drastic and exotic techniques for breaking them in. If it seems like a bad idea, that’s because it is. Break them in gently, and they will last much longer.

Waterproofing your Hiking Boots

Most hiking boots are already waterproof when you buy them, but you still have to do some additional waterproofing. Check the manufacturer’s recommendation, either in documentation that came with the boots or on their Web site.

Different materials require different kinds of waterproofing. Leather, whether full grain or split, requires a wax-based waterproofing compound (which is exactly what shoe polish is). Fabric, especially nylon blends, requires silicone-based waterproofing spray.

Since most hiking boots are made of a combination of leather and fabric, you will have to use both types of waterproofing. And be careful, because the silicone-based sprays can be harmful to the glued seams of leather hiking boots. The best approach for such dual-material hiking boots is to spray the silicone-based waterproofing on the fabric panels while shielding the leather, then spray the wax-based waterproofing on the leather panels and the seams.

If you have full grain leather hiking boots, you can either use a wax-based waterproofing spray or old-fashioned shoe polish. Shoe polish works best on the seams, as you can put it on extra thick and work it into the seams and stitching.

Before you first use them, and after each major hike, clean your boots thoroughly and give them a full waterproofing treatment. Hiking shoes, worn infrequently, might need the waterproofing treatment just once a year or so, but use your judgment. If you see new scuff or wear marks after a hike, reapply the waterproofing.

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