by Kevin

October 17, 2021

How to Clean Hiking Boots

You break in the new hiking boots by taking them for a long-awaited hike. You have a great time and return home, barely recognizing the shoes from the previous weekend. 

The sole has mud on it, and the heel has dust. You abandon them because you don’t know how to wash them. Hiking shoes are notorious for being very stinky.

It is so as trekking boots’ material is particularly good at soaking all the moisture and odor that escapes your feet while you trek through the woods. You must be wondering how to clean hiking boots and here we will describe the best process for cleaning hiking boots.

Clean Hiking Boots 

How to clean the uppers of hiking boot

Hiking boots are designed to handle muddy, rocky terrain. But it doesn’t indicate tossing your filthy buddies in the cupboard and forgetting about them is a good idea.

If you wash them properly, you’ll be able to spend many months on the trip together and avoid having to replace them early. If you’re too exhausted after a trek to clean them right away, clean them the next day. 

How to clean hiking boots?

Avoiding cleaning causes your boots to deteriorate in two ways: 

  • When you flex the shoes, dust, gravel, and sand get further into the suede and material. 
  • As dirt dries, it absorbs water from suede, making it less supple and hastening the aging process of the boots. 

You’ll require the following items to clean the hiking boots: 

  • An older vegetable brush or even a toothbrush 
  • Boot cleaner, saddle detergent, or a light dishwashing detergent and water combination are all great options. 
Cleaning Hiking Boots

How to clean the uppers of hiking boot 

Remove the laces before cleaning (learn how to lace hiking boots for comfort). Brush away dust and grime using a soft brush. Use flowing water and the shoe cleaner of your choice for complete cleaning. 

Here are a few more boot cleaning suggestions: 

  • Although most shoe cleaners are appropriate for several boots, just double-check to ensure it’s safe to use on the shoes. Study and follow the recommendations carefully. 
  • Avoid using bar soap and detergent because many of them have compounds that can degrade leather. 
  • Use a solution of 80 % water and 20 % vinegar to remove mold. 
  • After using the boots, make sure to rinse them with clean water. 
  • Boots should never be washed in a machine since they can be damaged. 
  • If you want to waterproof the shoes, you should do so while they’re already damp. Most shoes are watertight when they are originally purchased so that you won’t have waterproof boots. 

How to clean the outsoles of hiking boots 

Although caked-on dirt will not harm your boots, cleaning it will return them to their traction. Additionally, maintaining clean outsoles reduces the spread of invasive organisms from one hiking location to the next. 

Clean the rubber outsole firmly to loosen any lodged pebbles. Soak only the soles for persistently caked-on filth, and power-wash the muck away with a hose. 

Clean and Dry Your Hiking Boots

Storing Your Hiking Boots

Before keeping the shoes, check to ensure they are dry. Keep them away from direct sunshine in a clean, well-ventilated place. 

If you aren’t going to use these for a lot longer, pack them with paper to protect them from losing their shape. Dehumidifiers like silica gels are best to maintain the shoe odor-free. 

Repairing Hiking Boots

Examine the shoes and have them fixed as soon as you detect anything wrong with them or feel uneasy wearing them. 

Scars on foot can be caused by a loose thread or a damaged inner sole. As a result, examine the shoes thoroughly before going on a hike. 

How to Treat Your Hiking Boots

To ensure that the solution is as effective, properly clean and condition the shoes before using any products. Re-waterproofing mists and greases are now available on all online sites and sporting goods stores. 

Many shoes lose their waterproofing properties over time. Sprays are used to reestablish this function, allowing water to slide off without penetrating the shoe. Only twice or thrice per year, you have to spray the product. 

How to clean the outsoles of hiking boots 

How to Dry Hiking Boots

This phase is critical whether or not the shoes have been cleaned. Even with footwear that is breathable, stinky feet are possible. 

When hiking on a rainy day, there’s a good probability that water will leak in from the front. In this instance, it is critical to clean the boots for them to keep the performance. 

Avoid exposing the boots to a continuous heat source, including a bonfire, heaters, hairdryers, or direct sunlight, as this may cause the waterproofing to disintegrate. It can cause discoloration and adhesion loss in some circumstances.

For gaining further knowledge about your hiking and mountain boots, read our dedicated guides on choosing mountaineering boots and waterproofing hiking boots.

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About the author 

Kevin

Kevin loves bouldering. Mainly because he can practice it alone without considering other people. Although he rediscovered this hobby in the last three years, the boulders turned out to be his most visited landmarks.

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