What is Waterproof Fabric?

What is Waterproof Fabric?

Waterproof and breathable fabrics resist liquid passing through while allowing water vapors to pass through. In other words, they can block out the rain and snow, yet still allow you’re the vapor from your sweat to evaporate, hence their extended use in rainwear, waterproof outdoor sports clothing and tents. Water resistance is measured by the amount of water, measured in millimeters, that can be suspended above the waterproof fabric before any water seeps through. The designation of “waterproof” requires that the fabric must withstand over 1,000 millimeters of water pressure without leaking, although some fabrics with less than this amount of water resistance can still keep water out sufficiently for all practical purposes. Garments which were made from the fabrics with less than 1000 millimeters of water resistance showed no leaking after four hours of heavy simulated rain, while other garments made from fabrics with more than 20,000 millimeters of water pressure have leaked through zips, hoods and seams. Fabrics may also be waterproofed by a particular spray, although it has been known to alter the quality of the fabric in some instances.

Gore-tex® Waterproof Breathable Fabric

Gore-tex® is one of the premier waterproof fabrics currently on the market. In 1958, Wilbert Gore identified a market opportunity for polytetrafluoroethylene—better known as DuPont Teflon. Mr. Gore originally intended to use the material as insulation for electronic wires, and set up shop in his basement, proceeding to manufacture PTFE-insulated ribbon cables. Over ten years later, Mr. Gore’s son, Bob, discovered the PTFE could be stretched, effectively forming a strong, yet porous material. After much experimentation, Mr. Gore and his son hit upon the fast stretch/high temperature model and consequently patented the idea. When PTFE is stretched in this manner, it becomes smooth to the touch, porous, air permeable, strong, and weather durable (waterproof). Gore-tex® became a truly space-age material, yet is used in many earthly applications. Gore cables enable computers to transmit signals, and are used in computer printers, in underground oil drilling operations, in submarines and in miniature brain probe cables. Gore-tex is used in a variety of protective clothing, and can replace vinyl and rubber suits because of its breathability and comfort.

Waterproof Fabric Applications

Other than using waterproof fabric for the obvious reason of keeping yourself dry while out in the elements, the heavier weights can also be used in tents, tarps, awnings, and marine applications. When out in the woods hunting, you will likely be very grateful to have clothing which is waterproof and keeps you nice and dry and warm. Hunters are generally very focused when hunting and don’t want to have to worry about getting wet and miserable. Gore-tex®, and other lightweight, breathable and waterproof fabrics are truly miracle fabrics which lend significant convenience to our modern-day lives. Rockywoods.com has offers a truly impressive line of waterproof fabrics in many weights and colors, giving you extensive choices for clothing, tents, awnings, covers, outdoor furniture, and some marine and RV applications as well.

Rockywoods.com--Waterproof Breathable Fabrics

Any fabric with a PTFE coating laminated to the inside which repels water and moves moisture and vapor from the inside to the outside is considered waterproof/breathable. Gore-tex® and Ultrex® are the most well-known of these types of fabrics. Rockywoods.com offers Gore-tex® waterproof breathable fabrics in two and three layers. These fabrics are all made from a form of PTFE, and are both durable and washable. The laminate retains it waterproof capabilities throughout the useful life of the garment. Gore-tex® XCR is similar to classic Gore-tex® in terms of resistance to abrasion and chemicals and waterproof ability, however it is considered more breathable. Many Gore-tex® fabrics offered by rockywoods.com are two ply fabric and must be lined to protect the breathable membrane, while the three-ply fabrics already possess a liner. Rockywoods.com has a wide variety of Gore-tex® fabrics for all your waterproof fabric needs. In addition to Gore-tex®, rockywoods.com offers Extreme and Xalt® fabrics from Burlington Industries, which also meet the standards for waterproof fabric. You will be completely protected by this high-performance, waterproof, breathable and windproof barrier with a super water repellent finish. Rockywoods.com offers Weathertek2® breathable, laminate waterproof fabric as well in a different colors and weights as well as a waterproof, breathable Cordura® Nylon, and a Sympatex® three layer waterproof fabric.