Tent Cleaning Tips

Tent Cleaning – Removing Tough Stains


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Part of Herculite’s ongoing product enhancement and innovation focuses on Tent Fabric maintenance and cleanability so we offer guidelines for cleaning and maintaining your tents.

Regularly cleanings will wash away the dirt and grime but sometimes you will encounter some stubborn stains that will not come out with general cleaning. Let’s look at some possible suggestions for removing tough stains.

Caution: All of these suggestions are more aggressive than general cleaning and you should use caution when applying to tent fabrics. Always test a small area on the fabric surface before applying to general stain area.

Rust or mineral stains:

  • CLR (Calcium, Lime Rust remover) is an acid that dissolves mineral deposits that are left on the surface of the fabric.
  • If your clear sidewall windows have a hard water residue or look foggy, a weak dilution of these acids can remove the deposits as well.

Mildew stains:

  • Mildew stains are very difficult to remove and require a chorine cleaner of some type. You must be careful to not over clean them with any type of bleach because it will rob the plasticizers from the tent fabric and make it stiff.
  • Blitz Mildew remover or X-14 are good choices for using on mildew stains. These solutions are calcium hypochlorite and do a better job of “killing” the roots or spores of the mildew.

Tar, paint, duct tape or grease stains:

  • These types of stains can be removed with a pure organic citrus solvent.

Crepe paper or confetti stains:

  • These leave dyes that bleed deep into the vinyl and seem impossible to remove.
  • Tent rental companies in sunny states like Arizona and Nevada have found that the ultraviolet light from the sun can actually bleach out these dye stains.
  • Others have tried using infrared heating lamps like used at meat carving stations: Just set the lamp at normal distance from the surface and let it sit around 20 minutes.This has also been tried successfully on old set-in mildew stains and leaf stains, but this is a new idea and you must be careful to not let the vinyl get overheated.
For more questions contact sales@armbrustertentmaker.com.