Neoprene shorts are stretchable, water and oil resistant. They are a “must have” for any kayaker or surfer looking for extra protection and insulation. But without proper cleaning, the synthetic rubber becomes foul smelling and attracts scores of potentially harmful bacteria. A thorough soaking with a soft scrub brush and warm water is an effective way to keep your neoprene clean and protect its longevity. Don’t forget to stay away from metals or wire hangers when drying your shorts to prevent unsightly rust stains.
Things You’ll Need:
- Woolite Dishwashing soap Soft scrub brush Listerine Warm water Plastic hanger
- Dishwashing soap
- Soft scrub brush
- Warm water
- Plastic hanger
Give your neoprene shorts three or four vigorous shakes to knock loose any dirt or debris leftover from a day of kayaking or surfing. Turn them inside out and shake again in case anything has stuck to the inner lining. If you were hiking after a day on the water, carefully remove any briers or twigs that are snagged in the fabric. Pulling them away too quickly could tear the neoprene and create fissures or leaks.
Fill your sink full of warm water and add a a capful of Woolite or a squirt of dish detergent. Let the water suds and gently work the lather through the shorts for a few minutes.
Let the shorts soak for 15 to 30 minutes. If you feel the shorts are exceptionally dirty or prone to excess bacteria, you can add a capful of Listerine to the soak.
Use a soft scrub brush to remove any remaining dirt or sand for a few minutes. Do not overwork the neoprene or you may damage the fabric.
Drain the sink and rinse out the shorts in warm water until the suds are completely removed and the water runs clean. Avoid using a hose or too much water force. This will help preserve the integrity of the neoprene and add to its longevity.
Hang the neoprene shorts upside down using a plastic hanger or clothes line. If possible, dry them outdoors on a warm day, or indoors near a dehumidifier. Leaving your shorts on metal or using a wire hanger can rust and leave behind a residue on your neoprene shorts.
Tips & Warnings
- Rinse your neoprene shorts in warm water after every use to keep them clean and avoid bacteria build-up.