Discover the secrets to keeping your hunting boots dry with our comprehensive guide on “How To Waterproof Your Hunting Boots.” Learn the best techniques to keep your feet dry on your next hunting trip.
Are you worried about your hunting boots getting ruined in the rain? Do you have a pair of nice hunting boots that got wet recently? Have no fear. Below I will discuss ways to waterproof your hunting boots and keep them from getting soaked.
Why Do Your Favourite Hunting Boots Suck Up Water?
Your favorite pair of hunting boots start to suck up water when you wear them in a rainstorm.
The rubber soles swell, and the boots become uncomfortable as you trudge through the wet woods.
Treating hunting boots with polyurethane is a great way to combat this problem.
A simple spray-on application makes your shoes more water-resistant and protective against the elements.
The polyurethane coating will keep your boots waterproof, but it is essential to take proper care of your boots after applying the treatment.
After you have worn them in wet conditions, allow them to dry completely before storing them to prevent mold from developing inside the boot.
If you keep the boots while they’re still damp, they will attract even more moisture from the air inside and become moldy.
Using polyurethane on leather hunting boots will help keep your feet dry and warm during those rainy hunting trips.
How To Waterproof Leather Hunting Boots?
Leather hunting boots are the best!
They keep your feet warm and dry in the wettest conditions. But what do you do when you want to waterproof a pair of hunting boots?
Here is an easy way to waterproof those boots so you can get in the field with confidence.
- Put on the boots and walk around for about a half-hour, getting them nice and wet.
- Clean the insides of your boots with soap, making sure to get any dirt, mud, or other gunk off of them.
- Mix up a solution of 1 part bleach, two parts water, and 1 tablespoon dish detergent in a bucket. (For example, if you have three gallons of water, use 6 tablespoons)
- Take off your boots and set them inside the bucket until they are soaked with the bleach solution. Do not worry! The bleach will not damage the material on your boots or turn them yellow like it might have when you were in college. Let them soak for at least one hour.
- Remove the boots from the bucket and let them dry completely before wearing them outside again. You can speed up this process by placing them near a heat source or in front of a fan for about an hour.
You can waterproof any boot by treating the leather with a water-repellent spray.
There are numerous types and brands of these sprays available on the market, but most of them do an excellent job of waterproofing your boots.
Treating your shoes is easy. After cleaning them, apply the spray evenly to the leather.
Do not worry about getting it on the fabric or seams because it will not damage them. Let it dry overnight, and then wear the boots as usual.
The sprays usually last for several months before they need to be reapplied.
However, be aware that if you use your boots in wet conditions often, you will have to re-treat them with a waterproofing spray more frequently.
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How to waterproof your boots without ruining the integrity of the boot or voiding the warranty?
Waterproofing your boots is beneficial, but it can ruin your boots if you do not do it right. There are a few things to watch out for when waterproofing your boots.
First, be sure to waterproof the inside of the boot and the outside.
Most people think that only the outside of the boot needs to be waterproofed, but this is not true. The inside of the boot needs to be sealed just as much.
Second, do not accidentally waterproof the liners or stitch around the edges.
These need to be intact because they help hold the shape of your foot in the boot and keep it comfortable while you walk and move.
If you let your seams become waterlogged, they will lose their shape and no longer hold your foot comfortably in place.
How do you go about doing this? Here are step by step instructions:
- Remove laces and pull off all velcro straps.
- Pour a generous amount of rubber waterproofing into an old stocking or pantyhose leg and wrap it around your boot, making sure you get into all of the crevices between leather and rubber.
- Let it sit for a day or two and then remove it from inside.
Working in damp and wet conditions while hunting can ruin a hunting season
Most of the time, you will never notice that your hunting boots are leaking until you step into a puddle, or worse yet, walk through a creek. It is better to be safe than sorry, so waterproof your boots as soon as possible.
It is possible to waterproof your boots without removing the sole and lacing them with some waterproofing products.
However, most of these products are designed for leather shoes.
I would recommend using spray-on products with rubber soles because the residue from the spray could damage leather in the long run.
The directions on any product you purchase should clearly state whether it can be used on rubber soles or not.
If possible, try to waterproof your boots while they are brand new. This will ensure maximum protection against water and snow in cold weather.
You can also condition your boots after waterproofing them to restore their original softness and flexibility.
What to Expect When You’re Finished
The 25/75 waterproofing solution is a mixture of 25 percent pure neoprene and 75 percent Urethane.
A quick note about hunting leather boots: Waterproof your boots after the first few times you wear them in the field, not before.
This will help ensure that all waterproofing materials have time to work into the leather and make it effective.
And keep in mind that you’ll need to re-waterproof your boots annually because as you wear them more and more, the leather begins to break down and lose its ability to repel water.
Sometimes called Neoprene, rubberized cloth, or rubbers whatever you call this stuff, do not buy the spray-on kind.
It will not work on boots, and it is not worth the money you spend on it. The spray-on version is designed to seal non-porous surfaces like vinyl siding or windows; it will not stick to the leather.
Waterproof Boots Preventive Measures
- Get a nighttime boot so you can take it to the cobbler if need be
- Make sure they are leather, not suede
- Wear insulated socks—a cheap way to get lots of warmth.
- Please do not wear them in the rain or snow when the temperature drops below freezing. That is what snow boots are for.
- Please make sure they are waterproof out of the box or at least immediately, so you do not have a wet vacation and your boots rot out before hunting season starts.
Why Hunting Boots Are Important?
There are many kinds of boots to choose from: insulated, lace-up, and slip-on. Depending on your activity level, weather conditions, and budget, you need one.
In a survey of hunters’ boots preferences, the insulated hunting boot with a rubber sole is the most popular choice.
It is essential to keep feet warm while hunting because they can get wet quickly, which results in cold feet.
But still, you want your feet to be protected to prevent injuries. And in some cases, an insulated hunting boot can also be used for other outdoor activities such as hiking or camping.
Insulated boots are usually made with wool felt or foam with waterproof coating that helps keep feet dry and comfortable in cool temperatures.
These boots also come equipped with a removable lining so you can replace them when it is worn out and get some extra use out of the boots before buying a new pair.
In the end, no one will honestly know how to waterproof leather boots without taking steps to do it.
You might have to learn from your own mistakes or spend some money on a pair of waterproofing spray, but in either way, you’ll be better off for it in the end. The boots should not leak and thus fail to keep your feet dry, so be sure to take all of these steps into account as you hunt in the rain this season.