With regard to waterproof fabrics and water-repellent fabrics, it is fairly easy to confuse the two. In most cases, the terms are synonymous. But in reality, there are significant technical differences between them, and especially for those who want to stay dry in harsh weather conditions, a little difference can cause problems. Let's delve into the difference between waterproof and water repellent.
It's fairly easy to get confused about waterproof fabrics and water-repellent (splash-proof) fabrics. In most cases, the terms are synonymous. But in reality, there are significant technical differences between them, especially for those who want to stay dry in harsh weather conditions, and a little difference can cause problems. Here's an in-depth look at the difference between waterproofing and water repellency.
The most obvious difference between waterproof clothing and water-repellent clothing is that with water-repellent clothing you can get wet, especially if you stay in the rain for a longer period of time or under certain wearing conditions.
Using garments made from water-repellent spun fabrics, on the other hand, can keep the user's body dry no matter what the conditions are and no matter how long it takes.
How do you define both?
The difference between the definitions of waterproof and water repellent garments is based on the textile industry's definition of water resistance.
The international standard defines the incoming water pressure as 8.000mm (hydrostatic column), and textile materials (not finished garments) that are above this standard can be called waterproof.
Those below this standard can only be called water-repellent materials.
According to the above definition, waterproof materials do not actually guarantee the waterproofness of the garment.
This is because it also requires the overall design of the garment to be sound in order to prevent rain from entering the inner layers of the garment. This means that all closures, all seams, and all edges on the garment must be designed in a way to block any possible water ingress.
To prevent moisture from penetrating the seams, all seams connecting the exterior and interior of the garment must be sealed with pressed adhesive strips.
These seals must be resistant to washing, drying or any type of wear and tear. They must be made to last.
Since water will try every way to get into the garment, even if there is only a slight possibility that they will try in this place, it is quite a challenge for the designers.
Especially in the hemmed parts of the garment, without proper protection, people may directly experience that sense of desperation of watching the moisture around them enter the garment through various means.
The key to all of this lies in the hem and sleeve sections of the torso, and the edges of the hat are also the hardest hit by water absorption. In order to avoid these situations, waterproof clothing must be set in these parts of the waterproof tape.
According to the above definition, a finished textile product with an incoming water pressure of less than 8.000 mm water column or 0.8 bar can be called water-repellent clothing.
If a person is only exposed to rain or any moisture for a short period of time, such a garment is sufficient to keep dry and water vapor does not remain on the garment.
Since water-repellent materials usually do not contain any kind of tight coating, they breathe better than waterproof materials in most cases.
It is logical that they have better breathability, so sweat or moisture is also more likely to escape.
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Now that you know the difference, choosing clothes that best fits your lifestyle is easy!