How do you clean your gear?

Info on gear, conditioning, and preparation for hiking/climbing.
Forum rules
  • This is a mountaineering forum, so please keep your posts on-topic. Posts do not all have to be related to the 14ers but should at least be mountaineering-related.
  • Personal attacks and confrontational behavior will result in removal from the forum at the discretion of the administrators.
  • Do not use this forum to advertise, sell photos or other products or promote a commercial website.
  • Troll posts will be removed.
For more details, please see the Terms of Use you agreed to when joining the forum.
Post Reply
User avatar
434stonemill
Posts: 86
Joined: 9/6/2011
14ers: 31
13ers: 4
Trip Reports (1)

How do you clean your gear?

Post by 434stonemill »

I am looking to mine the immense wealth of knowledge on this board to ask a relatively simple question:

How do you get rid of smoke odor from your technical garments, specifically jackets and pants (shell/waterproof/windproof)? I really don't like to wash my outerwear, I don't think my one rain jacket has ever seen the wash, and usually when camping, I try not to wear anything like that around the campfire. But recently, I was camping in Joshua Tree and forgot to switch out jackets for the evening. It had quite the smokey odor, and few other things ended up smelling from being all in the same packed bag on the trip home. While I was in Joshua Tree, the Marshall Fire was burning near my home. I am lucky as there was no damage to my home, but my gear that was stored in my garage also smells like I had been camping with it.

Besides just letting it air outside on a nice day, what are folks suggestions?
User avatar
stephakett
Posts: 1003
Joined: 5/30/2014
14ers: 29
13ers: 40
Trip Reports (1)
Contact:

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by stephakett »

Nikwax makes a few different products for washing, as well as re-waterproofing waterproof items. i usually do them by hand/tub and hang to air dry.
happy shopping, OP! : https://www.rei.com/c/gear-and-clothing-washes
"There’s not heaven to go to because we’re in it already. We’re in hell, too- They coexist right beside each other and God is the land." - Elsa Dutton
User avatar
HikerGuy
Posts: 1129
Joined: 5/25/2006
14ers: 58
13ers: 244 8
Trip Reports (7)

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by HikerGuy »

I have always used Atsko Sport-Wash Laundry Detergent on my smellier clothes/gear. Woolite was mentioned on Reddit as the best detergent to remove wildfire smoke smell, never tried it though.
User avatar
dwoodward13
Posts: 545
Joined: 3/26/2011
14ers: 58 12
13ers: 117 3
Trip Reports (1)

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by dwoodward13 »

I've used several of the different Nikwax products and those seem to do a good job. For something like my rain jacket, I'll use the tech wash, followed by their Tx Direct to revive the DWR. I'll do an extra rinse cycle or two to make sure all the product washed out.

Also note, that you should get in the habit of washing gear somewhat frequently. The skin oils, dirt, and grime will clog the pores of your rain jacket making it less breathable and faster to wet out.
Aphelion
Posts: 148
Joined: 10/22/2017
14ers: 58 15
13ers: 42

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by Aphelion »

Just wash your gear. It usually needs low heat to dry, but a wash cycle isn't going to hurt it. I've tried the nikwax soaps, but I'm skeptical that they really did anything more than a normal detergent.
User avatar
Trotter
Posts: 1231
Joined: 6/5/2013
14ers: 58 5
13ers: 201 2 12
Trip Reports (13)

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by Trotter »

Ive had good results with a damp towel wipedown, and a couple days hanging it in a large room to air out
After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. -Nelson Mandela
Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called Ego. -Nietzsche
User avatar
JChitwood
Posts: 532
Joined: 8/29/2011
14ers: 58
13ers: 43

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by JChitwood »

I use Nikwax Tech Wash and follow it with another cycle using Nikwax TX Direct Wash-In then dry on low heat. I don’t do it every year unless I wear the jacket a lot. I read somewhere that the products and the dryer help restore the water repellancy but can’t verify if that’s true since I have so many jackets and it rarely rains or snows around here. I don’t think I’ve skied in the snow in 10 years and can only remember really getting rained on in the summer once. Of course that was in the Weminuche Rain Forest. Steer clear of that place in July and August unless you’re testing rainwear and tents.
"I'll make it." - Jimmy Chitwood
User avatar
SchralpTheGnar
Posts: 1774
Joined: 2/26/2008
14ers: 51 49 1
13ers: 28 23
Trip Reports (20)

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by SchralpTheGnar »

I wipe down my skis at the end of the day, otherwise I never wash my jackets but wash my pants and air dry them
User avatar
mtree
Posts: 1262
Joined: 6/16/2010
14ers: List not added

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by mtree »

I rarely wash my jackets. Occasionally pants. Never shoes. If its just outer layers I just pop in washing machine and air dry. NO DETERGENTS. Seems to work out ok.
Everything else never gets washed. Air dry if needed, but I don't want to smell like a rose in the wilderness.
- I didn't say it was your fault. I said I was blaming you.
User avatar
Barnold41
Posts: 311
Joined: 9/8/2016
14ers: 13
13ers: 12

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by Barnold41 »

I haven't washed any of the gear I've purchased in the last few years, but I've heard the NikWax washes & repellants work well. The clothes under my outerwear usually keep the stinkiness out of the outer layers. I have used a cloth to spot wash the outside but don't like to soak anything.
User avatar
Hiker Mike
Posts: 112
Joined: 9/23/2004
14ers: 29
13ers: 4

Re: How do you clean your gear?

Post by Hiker Mike »

I often just rinse my outerwear instead of the whole wash thing. However, keeping a jacket clean is one of the best ways to keep its useful life. Dirt, body oils and sweat can cause problems with the breath-ability. So, I only do a full wash after heavy activity.

Mike
"Just because you love the mountains doesn't mean the mountains love you."
-Lou Whittaker
Post Reply