A good tent can provide you with years of enjoyable, comfortable camping holidays. But rough surfaces, sharp edges, dampness and UV exposure can reduce your tent’s lifespan. Here’s how to ensure your outdoor home lasts as long as possible.
Make sure it’s dry
Pack away a damp tent and you’re asking for trouble. Mildew is smelly and potentially harmful for fabrics. Mildew can build up in as little as 24 hours. To prevent it, let your tent lie flat in the sun before packing to eliminate any humidity or dampness. If you have to pack up in the rain, remember to spread your tent out to dry as soon as possible.
Make sure it’s clean
While it’s important to keep dirt and debris from the interior of your tent, it’s equally important to keep the exterior clean. If your tent gets dirty or muddy on a trip or if you have been at the beach, remember that salt can damage your tent, zips and frame. Wash it with a garden hose at a gentle pressure or If you need to, use a sponge or brush to clean it. Avoid using powerful household cleaners or soaps, as these can damage tent materials.
Once it’s clean, let it dry thoroughly, wiping down the frame with a cloth. Finally, wipe zips with a silicon spray to keep them running smoothly before packing it away.
Roll, don't fold
This is a big one. Folding a tent or fly on the same creases risks creating permanent lines over time. Creasing can negatively affect waterproofing and the durability of fabric coatings. Instead, carefully roll or gently stuff your tent into its sack. If you must fold a tent, be sure to fold it differently each time you pack it, and try not to store it folded for long periods of time.
Tent care and repair
Repair any damage before you put your tent away as this will save time and potentially stress when you next want to use it. Once you put it away you just might forget it needs some TLC! Ensure you then replace any parts in your repair kit so you are always prepared for 'just in case'.
Lets not forget your sleeping bag
When you return from your holiday, clean your sleeping bag and hang it up as this stops the filling from sticking and importantly it airs out your bag. Use the cram bag only when you are packing up for your next break away.