How to re-waterproof your horse’s blankets
As a general rule of thumb, your horse needs to wear a horse blanket that’s waterproof if he steps outside. Just in case the weather turns! It might be more cost-effective to re-waterproof your horse’s blankets instead of buying new ones.
Keep in mind…
- If you use a horse blanket cleaning service, they may be able to add waterproofing for you.
- Depending on what route you go, you also need to option to do some touch-up work on the fly throughout the season. Touch-up waterproofing is easy to do at the barn, no need to send your blankets and rugs out for minor service.
Should you re-waterproof your blankets in the spring or the fall?
- YES is my answer to that. Do it when you can, but don’t get caught with an early cold snap and no clean blankets.
- If you are cleaning and waterproofing in the spring, it’s easy to store the blankets until fall arrives. If you have the original bags, these are ideal. However, I’ve never been able to fit them back in without wrestling.
- Another option is the storage bags that you can suck the air out of with a vacuum. Bins work well, too.
- Whatever storage option you choose, make sure it’s rodent, mud dauber, and spider-proof.
- You can re-waterproof your blankets any time of year with your choice of products. Clean blankets make the best canvas.
My very old and faded horse blanket, re-waterproofed, and ready for another winter. I like to hand them on gates, fences, or railings to cover them with a spray product. Stand upwind!
What do you use to re-waterproof a horse blanket?
- Look for fabric protectors. Think Scotchguard™ or some variety of fabric waterproofing products.
- Some are spray-on products some are wash-in products. There are treatments for cotton, some for nylon, some for leather (like your paddock boots!). Some are breathable, while others are not. I prefer the sprays that are breathable. Nikwax makes a whole line of blanket care products, from Nikwax blanket wash to Nikwax Rug Proof waterproofing. (Shopping links below)
- Now that you have your waterproof product selected, make sure your blanket is spotlessly clean. Refer to the manufacturer’s information on the best ways to clean it and the best type of laundry detergent. Or throw all of that “following directions” nonsense out the window! Wash your horse’s blankets without a machine! Or, if you have access to a large front loader, wash your horse blankets in a machine.
Found at the outdoor store! Some blanket manufacturers make a spray, too.
How to use horse blanket waterproofing sprays
- Use them outside! Sometimes the aroma is less than pleasant.
- After not using gloves and not covering my face the first time I did this, many regrets surfaced. I use disposable gloves and a mask. Sometimes the sprays condense and drip around the nozzle, coating your hands. It takes a lot of soap to get rid of that smell.
- Use multiple coats of your waterproofing spray! I find that many thin coats are more effective than one thick one. Leave 24 hours between coats.
- Some products dry in the sun; others need to dry in the shade. By the way, as things dry, the smell goes away.
- Test your blanket by tossing some water on it! Keep the blanket flat as you do this. Water should bead up. Let this sit for a minute or so, and see if it soaks in. If so, time to add another coat.
How to use waterproofing wash-ins for your horse’s clothes.
- Many types of wash-in waterproofing have two options for the application.
- Starting with clean blankets, you can apply the solution by hand. Sponge the product on evenly. Depending on the manufacturer, you might need a few coats.
- You can also use your washing machine. After a wash cycle, go again. Typically, a warm wash cycle on the synthetic setting is best. It may need rinsing, and then hang to dry or use a tumble dry. Reading the label is a must!
- Now you are ready to get another season out of your horse’s blanket!
There are lots of options here, I’ve included some of my favorites. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases, which costs you absolutely nothing. I’m eternally grateful for your support!
For waterproofing after you have washed your horse’s blankets: