Restoring Waterproof/Breathable Fabric

I have a dry suit that is about a year old, maybe used 30 times. My layers underneath are starting to get wet after a lot of in water use. I heard that you can put them in the dryer on low heat to “restore” the fabric. Just wanted to check and see if this is urban legend or if it actually works, and if so, how long to leave in dryer. Thanks.

Is the garment dirty?
and have you refreshed the DWR surface?

Wash it according to instructions in the garment and refresh the DWR. If the garment is dirty or the DWR worn off water cannot bead to allow the waterproof breathable membrane to work.

And you get wet.

Sometimes, things can be restored by using underwear.

Could be
dirty. Will check for washing instructions. What does DWR stand for? Thanks.


Click on the blue tabs for information and instructions.

Another brand:

Revive-X I have used before on Military grade Gore-Tex; and it works exceedingly well.

NOT in DRYER !!!
No dryer, you will melt the seals and overheat the fabric. Yes it says this for many things but not dry suits!!!

If gore product call the company of your product and ASK them for what they recommend in case you ruin it!

Revivix is approved for gore products so it has the least risk.

First thoroughly and repeatedly wash it in THE most recommended pre wash first, it has likely gotten contaminated and or the DWR finish needs help.

Then do an in wash revivix thing and see how it is.

DWR=Durable Water Repellent

Interestingly enough it’s actually the treatment that every nylon/polyester fabric receives to lubricate the threads as they pass through the machines when they are produced. Turns out it helps water bead up on the surface which is a big bonus. Some DWRs are more D than others. When your waterproof/breathable fabric is wetting out (worn out DWR) the wetness you experience inside the fabric is mostly condensation. You can produce A LOT of wetness by condensation and it is often misconstrued as leaking fabric.

Wetted out drysuit
A drysuit that wets out is a lot cooler, so is not necessarily a bad thing.


RE: revivex
I have attempted reviving the DWR on my dry suit a couple of times with limited success. Since you can’t (at least arent supposed to) use the dryer to set the Revivex, I tried a hair dryer. No Joy. Not detered, I re washed with Revivex and tried using an industrial heat gun on low setting. All I succeeded in doing was to melt the loop sections of the velcro wrist and neck covers. Since the forecast high temp today is in the 90’s I am going to try hanging it in the sun to dry as a final attempt.

New Type…
Revivex has a new type of DWR restorer that is AIR DRY:

McNett Fabric Care
Same folks who make 303 Protectant. Best fabric restorer I’ve ever used.

Mcnett Fabric Care question.
is this air dryable?

Just washed my Kokatat drysuit (I use the Mcnett’s cleaner, always) and tested it for leaks with air bubbles and filling it in the laundry tub (e.g. supported) up to the shoulders. No leaks.

But the last few times I did rescue and rolling classes I noticed some wetness at the waist (not lower down or in the legs and feet, and I always wade in to burp the suit). It’s not perspiration as the chest and arm areas are perfectly dry.

the suit is very clean & totally dry now, and ready to be stored for a month or so w. a touch of 303 on the gaskets.

Perfect time to use a product like this.


Check zipper
Friendlyfire said:

“But the last few times I did rescue and rolling classes I noticed some wetness at the waist (not lower down or in the legs and feet, and I always wade in to burp the suit). It’s not perspiration as the chest and arm areas are perfectly dry.”

Perhaps your zipper wasn’t closed all the way or maybe it is leaking. If it didn’t leak when you ran your test, probably wasn’t closed all the way. Doesn’t take much to cause you to be wet inside.


Thanks for all the info.
Just ordered enough McNett wash and waterproofing to keep Seattle dry. Will report back to the list after I’ve done the washings and worn the suit.

suz, shot you an email
Didn’t want to hijack the material thread. I LOVE my Kokatat suit w. all the women specific features, so I had another question about caring for it.

I will definitely pay extra attention to both zippers.

by all means…
…open the zipper BEFORE you wet.

Just sayin’.

ZIP IT! :smiley:
too funny, a MAN advising me to keep MY zipper closed.

o the irony. On at least two different levels.

I always say…
Kayaking is the only sport where men wear skirts AND need help with their zippers.

IME, none of them are very durable

– Last Updated: Aug-05-09 8:51 PM EST –

Try a simple experiment:

1- Take a new garment and pour amount of water on it.

2- Rub your finger across it a few times.

Chances are that within a half dozen strokes, the fabric will wet out. The first time I saw this, I was astonished and somewhat appalled.

From what I've seen, the "restorer" products are even less durable and basically just a waste of money. They work great right after you apply them, but the garment wets out again after minimal use.