Hiking and camping are great outdoor pastimes but like any other outdoor activity, they require good maintenance especially if you have a hiking backpack. While the backpacks are made to be lightweight and easy to carry, they still need some TLC to keep them clean and in top condition. Here are some quick tips for cleaning hiking backpacks. Read on to learn more.
Firstly, wipe off all dirt, mud and sand from the bag. For hiking the bag will often be completely drenched with rain or snow. Make sure the backpack is completely empty before wiping off the dirt. For bigger stains or marks, use a damp cloth and mild detergent. Do not use a stiff brush to wipe off the liquid as this can cause damage to the fabric of the bag.
Wipe off all water that has fallen from the bag. While the bag is dry, it is still absorbing moisture from the surrounding areas. As such, any moisture will have an instant effect on the bag and its contents. This is why it is important to wipe off the water first before mopping. A damp cloth will dry much faster than a dry one.
Once the backpack is dry, you can start wiping off the stains left by food. Food stains are usually brown or black in color. If the spill occurred while washing the bag, remove the soap immediately and any clothing used to wash the bag. Once the area is cleaned, apply a stain remover like rubbing alcohol. Let the stain sit for about half an hour before wiping it off with a cloth.
Use a towel to dry the bag. After the bag has been completely dry, check the backpack for holes or tears. If any tears are found, fill them with some sand or dirt to fill them up. Do not use too much sand or dirt as this can cause further damage to the bag. Replace the bag if necessary.
Hiking backpacks come with some special features to address certain issues. One of these is the rain shell which is a waterproof membrane that can be placed over the bag to prevent any leaks. Another feature that is beneficial is the attached rain hood. This feature comes in many different styles and colors depending on your personal preference. A good cleaning should leave no room for bacteria to survive so it is important to keep this feature clean at all times.
When cleaning hiking backpack bags, make sure that you do not use any detergents or harsh chemicals. You can clean the bag with just water and a mild soap. If the bag has a liner then this can also be washed with water and a mild soap. When doing this, do not put the backpack into the washer or dryer as this may damage the bag and cause problems later.
If the backpack has a backpack frame, then this can also be washed. Simply wash it with water and a mild soap. It is wise to lay down something that will protect it from the nozzle of the cleaning spray. It is recommended that you use an old towel as this will provide protection to the backpack and the fabric. Never wring out the towel because it will only cause the backpack to lose its shape and will leave small holes.
Next, rinse the bag off thoroughly by using a spray bottle or hose. Once the bag is rinsed, you can then hang it out to dry. If the bag gets too wet, then it is wise to let it dry naturally for the best results.
If there are any tears or stains on the bag, then it is wise to treat these first. First, remove them with a damp cloth and a mild cleaner. Once they are removed, allow the area to dry in the sun. Then, treat with a stain remover. This will help to keep your bag looking new for a longer time.