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It’s nice to learn how to repair rubber boots before they start to leak as this not only helps in keeping your favorite footwear longer but also saves you serious cash. Let’s discover six effective methods to repair damaged rubber boots and useful tips to care for them.
How to Repair Rubber Boots?
Although rubber boot doesn’t degrade quickly over time, they may develop some splits and cracks on accounts of constant wear and tear. Before throwing them away or rushing to buy a new pair, take a look at some of the most effective methods of repair cracked rubber boots.
1. How to fix a crack or split
This method doesn’t require lots of fancy equipment but some basic tools and materials.
Let’s take a look at how to fix a cracked rubber boot:
- Clean thoroughly the exterior of the boots with soapy water and then use a cloth to dry them completely.
- Identify the holes and cracks that need patching, then place the painter’s tape around them. This will help protect the other areas of the boot from being smudged.
- Gently sand the area that needs gluing.
- Wear gloves or harsh chemicals that will cause damage to your hands.
- Place a paper inside of the boots to prevent the glue from sticking into the boots.
- Apply the glue fully on the cracks using a brush.
- Take the tape off and give the boot 24 hours to completely dry.
Don’t just apply the glue to the cracks only. Expand it by half an inch for better bonding and less chance of the crack being spread further.
2. Repairs on the go
What should you do if there is a crack on your favorite boots while you are traveling? In this situation, using adhesive patches is the best solution to protect your feet from getting wet.
How to do:
- Clean the area, repair then and dry it with a cloth.
- Fully apply the glue on the crack then put the patch on top of the glue.
- Place some pressure on the boots strongly, right to the edges.
- Move your fingers repeatedly back and forth the patch area for better stick ability.
- Wait for the patch to dry (5-10 minutes)
- To avoid further cracking, expand the glue beyond the crack or split.
- Resolve any defect as quickly as possible.
- Keep the inside of your boots dry or the lining can be damaged.
3. Professional Repairs
Sometimes, the crack or puncture is beyond your capacity to repair. In this case, don’t waste time and effort or you may end up with severely damaged shoes. Instead, have a shoe cobbler do the job for the best bonding. They are able to make your boots smaller or larger, repair different types of cracks, and even turn your shoes into something that looks like new ones.
Getting your shoes repaired by a cobbler is no doubt a more expensive option, but I’m sure it’s really worth it.
4. Repairing a separated sole
The sole separating from the upper of your boots is something of a rarity, but it is expected to take place. Fortunately, you can fix it easily using urethane structural adhesives. There also have some adhesives specifically formulated for this task like Gorilla Super Glue Gel, which creates a flexible bond without clamping.
How to do:
- Clean your boot thoroughly.
- Ensure it’s not wet or moist.
- Apply the glue to all the places where the sole contacts with the upper.
- Leave the glue a few minutes to dry.
- Sand the areas that need gluing before you repair a crack in order for the adhesive to bond better.
- Place strong pressure on the upper and sole using a C-clamp.
5. Taking care of rubber boot
Keeping the rubber clean and conditioned properly is the best way to extend the life of your boots. Listed below are a few useful tips that can help you make your rubber boots last longer.
It’s necessary to clean the entire exterior of your boots after use to keep your boots in tip-top condition. You can use a sponge to sweep all the debris, dirt, or mud away, protecting your boot from cracking or wearing out over time.
To completely remove the tough mud and grime from your shoes, using an outdoor hose might not be enough. I highly recommend you use dishwashing liquid with a boot brush scraper or a brush to have the best results.
Conditioning your boots regularly is important in prolonging the boot life. Here are some useful tips you should follow:
- Make sure not to expose them to high temperatures or direct sunlight because this may result in the crack or breakdown of your boot.
- Condition your boots every couple of months using a conditioner like 303 Rubber Seal Protectant and Conditioner.
- After applying it to your boots, you should wash off excess and let the boots dry overnight.
- Let the inside of your boots get dry naturally before the next use.
The boot will sink or stretch under the temperature changes, so make sure not to let them outside. Instead, keep your boots in an insulated place when not in use. Leave the boots upright or hang them upside down unless they will end up cracking or splitting. Last but not least, use a conditioner after frequent use to extend the life of your boots.
6. Caring for the inside of your rubber boot
The inside of your boots is the last thing you should not overlook. While rubber boots keep your feet dry, they can cause your feet to sweat and smell bad. But there is nothing to worry about! You can avoid this by spraying vinegar in your boots and leaving it time to absorb nasty smells. Another great way to destroy foot odor is by using a Shoe Odor Eliminator.
Your rubber boots will quickly deteriorate if their inside gets wet. To prevent this, you can use a boot dryer or moisture absorber sachets.
How do you fixing a hole?
You can use silicone glue or a repair kit to fix small holes following the aforementioned methods. However, they may not help in the case of a large hole in your rubber boots. Alternatively, you should have a cobbler sew a piece of rubber on the hole.
If this method doesn’t work for your case, you have no choice but to buy a new pair of rubber boots. It may help you to save much time and effort.
How do I fixing my leaking muck boot?
Repair leaks in muck boots or even hunter boots is not a cumbersome task. Whether it is small cuts or holes, just patch them up using a flexible silicone adhesive. The advantage of this adhesive is that it stays strong after it dries and makes the boots more water-resistant. Here is how to:
- Rinse the boots out with soapy water and then fresh water. Make sure to dry the boots for a better adhesive bond.
- Apply the silicone glue or a patch to the leakage and then let the glue dry.
- For bigger holes, cover a patch is taken from the repair kit or shoe & wader repair kit over the hole.
- Next, apply the glue around the hole. Give the glue the time to dry.
- Squeeze the patch over the hole strongly and press a finger over the area to make sure there are no air bubbles underneath the patch.
- Wait for the rubber boots to cure before using them (about 48 hours).
Does Gorilla Glue work on rain boots?
Yes. Gorilla Glue is an industrial-strength adhesive that works on any type of material including rubber, leather, and vinyl. Gorilla Glue creates a very strong clear and has been specifically used for ponding peeling soles or repair damaged shoes.
What glue is best for the rain boots?
Which is the best glue depends much on what each piece of rubber is made from. Elastic substances are various, ranging from natural rubber to Polyurethane, EPDM, neoprene, urethanes, and silicones.
Cyanoacrylate instant adhesives, as known as instant glues, are a great option for rubber bonding as they cure very quickly with very little clamping time. Remember to use just a tiny drop of cyanoacrylate, and ensure components are pressed together firmly. If the joint breaks after a period of extensive maintenance, you may find it more difficult to bond the rubber( like EPDM or natural rubber).
How about EPDM and natural rubber? Just use a specialist cyanoacrylate like Permabond 105 without a primer. For silicone bonding, you should use the primer of Permabond POP combined with 105 or POP and Permabond 2050 cyanoacrylate for more flexibility.
In general, products like Shoe Goo, Boot-Fix Glue, and similar styrene-butadiene adhesives are the best glues for shoes that create a clear strong with most flexible substances. Thus, if you’re not truly clear about which is the best glue for the rubber to rubber.
Now, with these effective methods in hand, you don’t have to throw your rubber boots away. Instead, you can repair your footwear easily and quickly at home on your own. It’s worth learning rubber boot repair, right?