We propose you learn more about the design and durability of your waterproof jacket. This will help you choose the best Rab jacket for you.
Understanding the basics of waterproofing before choosing your waterproof jacket is essential.
What does waterproofing mean for a jacket?
It would help if you created a barrier to prevent water from entering a fabric’s surface. Most materials are porous by nature and allow water to penetrate.
Although oils and waxes were used to waterproof fabrics initially, they were heavy and needed to be constantly reapplied. Modern waterproof materials have a thin waterproof layer, which can be adjusted to allow for sweat to pass to make the garment more comfortable.
Outer shell fabrics are often treated with durable water repellency (DWR) to preserve and maximize their effectiveness.
Two main methods for creating a waterproof barrier are lamination and coating.
Coatings can make waterproofing possible.
Applying a coating to fabric was the first way to create a waterproof and breathable barrier. This is still the most common method of waterproofing garments. The liquid coating can be applied directly to the fabric like you would paint a wall using a roller. This results in a durable, flexible coating.
Coatings can come in various materials and be applied in layers with varying thicknesses. This method is not used at Rab.
Lamination can be used to waterproof
Laminating is applying a thin membrane on fabric to create multiple layers. The membrane is assembled separately, then glued to the material or laminated to it.
Different materials and extrusion methods will result in other properties.
Rab collaborates closely with partners and textile mills in selecting and combining fabrics and membranes for products perfect for the intended purpose.
Durable Water Repellent (DWR) treatment method
Water repellent is not synonymous with waterproof. DWR is applied to the fabric’s exterior. This causes water droplets on the fabric’s surface, reducing standing water and preventing moisture from leaking into the outer fabric.
This allows the membrane’s efficiency to be maintained. To ensure the best performance of the garment, the DWR treatment must be applied regularly during the product’s lifetime.
How can I tell if my jacket has waterproof properties?
Waterproofing is a must. Waterproofing is a definitive measure.
A higher level of waterproofing will make the garment more durable and last longer.
Hydrostatic/water column pressure testing determines the fabric’s waterproofness. This test determines the fabric’s ability to withstand hydraulic pressure. Imagine a long tube (30m) placed vertically on a material. Then slowly fill it with water.
The fabric’s pressure increases as more water is added. These results are expressed in terms of the height of the water column the material can withstand before it absorbs moisture. A hydrostatic pressure (HH), for example, is a height of 1,500mm (1.5m) to 30,000mm (30m). The industry standard for waterproof fabric is 1,500mm.
Hydraulic pressure can take many forms in practice. Hydraulic pressure can manifest itself in many ways. Backpack straps, climbing harnesses, and kneeling on the ground are all examples of hydraulic pressure.
These contact points are often where moisture can seep into garments if a suitable combination of materials and technologies is not used.