How to maintain Durable Water Repellency

Durable Water Repellent (DWR) treatment enhances the performance of a garments outer fabric by encouraging water to bead up and roll off the surface. A DWR finish bonds to the textile fibres to make them water resistant and improves existing water repellency of fabric.

DWR diminish in performance due to a number of factors—dirt, body oils, abrasion and repeated launderings. Often they can be revived by a washing and a few minutes of tumbling in a clothes dryer set on low or medium heat. With heavily used garments, DWRs eventually need to be reapplied by a spray-on or wash-in product.

Maintaining DWR

Wash the garment with an additive-free detergent or soap. You can use regular laundry detergent, but you may have to give it an extra rinse or two to get rid of any residue. Do not use liquid detergents or delicate detergents as they contain fabric softeners that can impede the effectiveness of the DWR finish.

  1. Machine wash your garments using the machine's complete cycle.
  2. Repeat the rinse cycle once or twice to ensure all soapy residue is removed.
  3. Dry at medium-hot setting, and let the garment cycle for 15 minutes after it's dry to revive the original DWR finish. If you have an iron with a cool synthetic setting, you can lightly iron the garment to perk up the DWR treatment.

Restoring DWR

Wash the garment with an additive-free detergent or soap and apply a DWR treatment. Use a spray-on treatment for 2-ply garments. Wash-in products work well for both 2 and 3-ply garments.

  1. Machine wash your garment.
  2. While the garment is still wet, saturate the outside with the spray-on product and follow the manufacturer's directions. If you're using a wash-in product, follow the manufacturer's directions.
  3. Dry at medium-hot setting.
  4. Clean any surface in your home that may have come into contact with the treatment. It is also a good idea to run your washing machine through a complete cycle while it is empty to remove any residue.

Kathmandu Product Expert Daan Dijkstra explains the best way to restore your waterproof garments.

Learn how to restore the DWR in your waterproof jacket

Why do I need to maintain the Durable Water Repellency (DWR)?

In a nutshell, to stay dry! DWR can diminish in performance due to a number of factors — like dirt, sweat, abrasion and constant use. Usually the DWR treatment will encourage water to bead up and roll off the surface of your garments. But as the treatment begins to fade, the fabric will start to absorb water instead.

Restoring the DWR of your waterproof jacket:

Wash in

  • After washing your waterproof jacket through a standard cycle, give it another spin with Granger’s Clothing Repel. Select a warm wash at 30 degrees Celsius, and select a standard washing program.

Spray on

  • After washing your waterproof jacket, use a specialised product like Granger’s Performance Repel. Spray directly on the damp garment from a distance of 10–15 centimetres.

  • Wait for two minutes, and wipe away any excess with a clean cloth.


  • Depending on the advice on your care label, your garment can either air dry or tumble dry. Follow the instructions for the best results.