Your outdoor home (tent) is susceptible to dust, grime, and other forms of dirt in the fields. Therefore, it’s most likely going to get dirty after a getaway.
So once in a while, you have to clean it if you need many more years of faithful service.
You’ll read about how to effectively wash your tent without destroying anything on it in this article. But before we get there, I’ll highlight the importance of cleaning your tent in the section that follows.
The Importance Of Cleaning Your Tent
Some of the top-notch pros of cleaning your tent are explained below.
Keeps Odors At Bay
No dirt has a pleasant smell. Every dirty thing kept for long days will release a disgusting smell — think of bird droppings, sweat, and other shit. If you wash the filth in time, it won’t decompose to release the lousy smell later.
Extends The Tent’s Lifespan
Tents that are regularly cleaned often stay longer, and vice versa. You can liken this to clothes that stay long without being washed — like the rags we use in the fields.
We both know that disease-causing pathogens breed in dirty areas and spots. They’ll breed in your tent if it’s messy. Thus, washing it will alleviate your chances of contracting a disease.
To Look Neat
This is obvious. And, when your tent looks neat, you also look neat — who doesn’t want this?
To Store It Properly
Think about a dirty tent that has all sorts of birds’ droppings, smells terrible, and generally looks like a rag. Will you bother putting it in order before you store it? I don’t expect a “yes” for an answer. Otherwise, you’ll put it in order if it’s in good condition — that’s what I mean.
You will only need a handful of materials that include:
- Non-detergent soap (available in camping stores)
- Cold and or lukewarm water
- A nonabrasive sponge
- A large washing tub
Pick/Remove All The Lose Dirt
There are probably some loose leaves, sticks, needles, bird droppings, cones, and others. Pick them up and or try to remove them using a stick or anything else. They shouldn’t bother you later while fine-cleaning the remaining dirt.
Also, some of them, like needles, may hurt you while in the cleaning process.
Spot Clean The Tent
At this step, you’ll remove all the conspicuous spots that make the tent look too dirty. You’ll use the non-detergent product listed above in the materials needed. While applying this soap, only do it on the spotted areas so that they get sufficient lather. Then, use the sponge to rub the dirty surface gently until the stain is removed.
Hose It With Clean Water
First, hose down the just-scrubbed surfaces with clean water. You can continue rubbing them a bit as you do the hosing. Then, extend the hosing to all surfaces to make the tent soft.
Prepare Your Tub
Remember that your choice of the size of the tub to use should rely on your tent’s size. Now add enough water into the container. On the chosen soap’s label, read all user instructions to know the right amount to be used. Now add the right amount of the soap to your water.
Soak The Tent
Again, read the soaking instructions on your soap’s label. Then, take the tent and immerse it into the water in the tub. Rainfly it in the water. You can always use lukewarm water if you like. Allow the tent to stay in water for as long as directed by the tent cleaner’s instructions.
Wash The Tent
After waiting for the right soaking period, it’s time to begin washing your tent manually now. You can add a little bit of the tent cleaner (soap) that you used above while washing. The washing at this stage is done on the whole tent, preferably using your hands. Scrub all surfaces by hand to remove any remaining stains.
Rinse Off The Tent
The rinsing should be thoroughly done as the tent often collects more soapy water due to its bulk. You may use a lot of water.
Leave It To Dry
Your last step is here now. You have washed the tent, so it needs to dry before you can store it. Tents are often bulky, so they may take as much as greater than 12 hours to dry completely. Be patient before it dries. Store it well.
Mistakes To Avoid
Machine Washing Or Drying
Most washers will tear off your tent’s fabric, and this is not something you want. Machine dryers can do the same, and even burn your tent due to excess heat.
Using Household Detergents
I once used my household detergent for washing my tent, and the result was destructive. I never knew that the soaps have an effect on the waterproof surface of the tent.
I also realized that their perfumes often attract insects and rodents that will later destroy your tent. Instead, it’s recommended that you use tent-recommended soaps and detergents.
Storing A Wet Tent
Wet tents will soon attract a lot of dust and other dirt. They’ll as well start smelling foul in the long run. Storing a wet tent will also weaken its fabric with time. Make sure that you air the tent to dry appropriately no matter how long it takes. Remember not to machine dry it.
Using A Harsh Scrubbing Material
The effect of rough scrubbing materials is obvious in your tent. It will destroy the outer surface. Prolonged use will make it defective so fast. Consequently, you’ll incur replacement costs in a short period.
The Bottom Line
This is the best method you’ll meet as far as cleaning your tent is concerned. It uses not only the right cleaning procedure, but also the apt detergent, water, and other materials. You also have a list of the comprehensive reasons why you should clean your tent, plus the common mistakes to avoid. The whole process is straightforward.
Meanwhile, enjoy your time in the fields, pals!