Whether you're a lover of the outdoors, often train or work outside in the elements, or just want to keep dry on a rainy day, you've probably heard of Gore-Tex jackets. Designed to repel water while allowing water vapor to escape, Gore-Tex apparel keeps you comfortable. When it comes to waterproof, breathable materials, it is an industry leader.
In fact, you really can't do better than Gore-Tex rain jackets from Boathouse.com. But how long will these jackets last? The simple answer is 5-10 years with proper care, depending on how often you wear it. Read on to learn more details.
What Exactly is Gore-Tex?
Gore-Tex is a layer of stretched Teflon with pores that are small enough to let air pass through. Gore-Tex waterproof jackets feature this stretched polymer layer sandwiched between an inner fabric layer for comfort and an outer shell to protect it from abrasion and friction. Some Gore-Tex apparel has added insulation, and some do not. From gloves to parkas, pants to rain shells, Gore-Tex apparel comes in many designs.
The Role of DWR Coating
Almost always, Gore-Tex clothing features DWR coating. It stands for Durable Water Repellent--a polymer that's also applied to the garment's outer layer. This causes water to bead and roll off the fabric to help keep you dry. The outer layer can become saturated with water if the coating wears off. It will make you feel damp and clammy, even if your jacket isn't leaking. When Gore-Tex stops working, it's usually worn down DWR that is the culprit.
Years of Use if Properly Cared For
If your Gore-Tex clothing is properly cared for, it should remain waterproof for 3-5 years. It can easily last for ten years or more if you store it properly and don't wear it that much. Of course, with regular active use, friction and heat can cause the DWR to break down more quickly. The good news is that you can reapply the coating to a garment. It will never be as good as the one applied in the factory. However, you can keep your Gore-Tex functioning pretty close to new with yearly reapplication.
Don't Accept Any Imitations
There are a lot of waterproof garments out there, but few work as well as Gore-Tex. When investing in waterproof apparel, make sure you're getting the real deal. Trusted retailers like Boathouse.com have men's Gore-Tex rain jackets and women's Gore-Tex rain jackets for a wide range of weather conditions. They also carry Gore-Tex pants and gloves, which really come in handy on a rainy day. From the soccer field to the golf course, waterproof apparel can keep you comfortable, even when Mother Nature isn't cooperating. And with the right care, your favorite jacket could last a decade or more.