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Permethrin damaging or effecting the performance of breathable fabrics?
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Michael C
(chinookhead) - F - M
Permethrin damaging or effecting the performance of breathable fabrics? on 06/27/2013 21:16:31 MDT Print View

I am about to reapply the permethrin to my clothes and now I'm debating whether or not it's a good idea to spray my EVENT and Gore-Text gear with this stuff. Do you think that the permethrin will mess with the DWR, damage the waterproof breathable liner, or effect its ability to breathe by "infecting" the breathable liner? I'm asking this because I've heard that DEET can negatively effect breathable clothes by degrading materials like nylon and inhibiting the breatheability..

Last year I sprayed my clothes with permethrin and I was very impressed with how it worked. Even in very buggy areas I was able to wear very thin polyester (not woven) and wool shirts and I did not get any bites through my permethrin treated clothes. It made the bugs much less bothersome when the ones that approached me just sort of rolled off or started nose diving instead of constantly buzzing around me. Also, I don't like DEET, so it is not an option (ruins clothes, degrades nylon fishing line, and it is "scary").

peter vacco

Locale: no. california
Re: Permethrin damaging or effecting the performance of breathable fabrics? on 06/27/2013 21:40:01 MDT Print View

peter being a big fan of p-ryn.. but even then, we gott'a kind of ponder this for a minute.

if one has a nice e-vent parka (Ka-Ching), and is rightfully concerned with maybe the p-ryn mucking with it's already questionable dwr, let us consider that the e-vent itself is pretty darn 100% impervious to insects, and if one adds to that the situations where we mostly wear the parka (wind, rain), that leaves the only time that the p-rin sprayed on our very sweet e-vent doing us much good, is going to be the time we spend in camp while wearing a parka.

i spray the caca out of everything else, but tend to give the tent fly and the parka a wide berth.

just my op.


Tjaard Breeuwer
(Tjaard) - MLife

Locale: Minnesota, USA
+1 for Peter on 06/27/2013 21:46:08 MDT Print View

I agree with Peter.
What do you stand to gain with spraying aa wpb parka? It's already bugproof.

Stephen Komae
(skomae) - MLife

Locale: northeastern US
terrible for DWR on 06/27/2013 21:53:02 MDT Print View

Not a good idea. Permethrin will not harm the fabric at all (it will eventually wash or wear out) but it will disrupt the DWR coating that we prize so much on our WP/BR gear. Since waterproof/breathable membranes rely on the DWR to keep the face fabric dry and breathable in the presence of water, the end result will be wetted out face fabric leading to poor breathability.

I tested this particular combination on nylon pants that originally had a fantastic DWR treatment and they no longer bead water well. No matter, as this particular item was better off treated with Permethrin than DWR, but still sad to see such a high quality DWR treatment go to waste.

I would definitely not apply Permethrin to your rain gear!

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Permethrin on 06/27/2013 21:53:49 MDT Print View

I can tell you from personal experience that permethrin will ruin a DWR coating. Not recommended.

Richard Nisley
(richard295) - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Re: Permethrin on 06/27/2013 23:24:41 MDT Print View

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
Permethrin damaging or effecting the performance of breathable fabrics? on 06/28/2013 04:04:31 MDT Print View

Yes, permethrin will screw up a DWR. Mainly water is pretty highly polar. This is because the bonding of the oxygen and hydrogen is about 60 degrees... So, this is what creats surface tension on the water droplet. Permethin acts as a dye, and loosly bonds with molecules via hydrogen bonding or "polar" bonding. Because of this, it will actually create a situation where water will stick to the surface molecule rather than itself (creating a surface tension.)