Keeping your tent clean will increase the life of the tent, not to mention the aesthetic appearance. Cleaning your tent can be a fairly easy job with the right tools. Lets take a look at maintaining your camping tent for maximum longevity.
The first step to cleaning your tent is to setup in a place where you have access to electricity and low pressure water.
Step 1. Light Cleaning
Tools needed: A shop vacuum, Brush head accessory, and extension cord.
Thoroughly vacuum the entire tent using the shop vac and brush head extension. Do not use without the brush head accessory. Carefully sweep the brush head from side to side to clean the entire floor, walls, interior roof and all seams. Repeat this process on the exterior of your tent. This is usually the only cleaning your tent will require.
Step 2. Heavy Cleaning
Tools needed: Non bleach laundry detergent, bucket, very soft bristle brush, water hose with spray attachment.
This process should only be used on heavily soiled tents. Mix a small amount of detergent in your bucket with slightly warm water. Lightly wet one section of your tent with hose sprayer. Dip soft bristle brush into soapy water and very lightly brush tent to clean, taking care not to put excessive pressure on any part of your tent. Lightly spray washed area with water hose and spray accessory to remove soap. After the entire tent has been cleaned, leave the tent setup to dry completely.
Things you should not do:
Never use a power washer to clean your tent, high pressure and chemicals used in their soaps can be very harmful to tent fabric.
Never use spot removers, these contain harsh chemicals and cleaners that can remove the waterproofing from the fabric and cause water leaks and fabric deterioration.
Using a common sense approach to cleaning and maintaining your tent will give you years of use and enjoyment.