Kokatat offers basic care instructions for our products under the "Product Care" tab for each individual garment. These and the below topics for specific product types and guidelines will help extend the life and function of your Kokatat garment.
Delamination of the coating on older dry suits and tops may occur with age, use or contamination but does not normally result in leakage unless the delamination is very severe. If you feel the garment is leaking, please contact us for assistance.
Garments made with GORE-TEX® fabrics offer dramatically increased comfort in all conditions because GORE-TEX® fabrics are absolutely waterproof and windproof from the outside, yet allow moisture and perspiration vapor to escape from the inside. The result: you stay drier and more comfortable. And because the GORE-TEX® membrane is protected between two layers of fabric, it is more durable than coated fabrics. The GORE-TEX® membrane is a teflon type film, resembling white tape. It's sandwiched between an inner lining material and an outer face fabric. The outer face fabric is produced for maximum durability while remaining supple & quiet. If you feel as though your GORE-TEX® garment is leaking, please contact us for assistance.
Durable Water Repellent (DWR) prevents liquid from building up on your garment’s outer layer which can make you feel damp and clammy (“wetting out”). Regular wear and tear, exposure to dirt, detergents and other impurities causes DWR to wear off over time, but the good news is that it can be restored. The effective life of the DWR depends upon how the garment is cared for, and how rigorously it is used. The most effective way to maintain the garment's water and stain repellency is to rinse it and let it drip dry (washing helps, and if it's not a gasketed or a coated fabric, then it can be put in the dryer). DWR is not what makes a garment waterproof - it's a treatment applied to the face fabric that keeps water beading on the outer surface rather than soaking into it.
The zipper is one of the most sensitive components of your drysuit. Treat it carefully. The most common causes of zipper leakage are failure to close the zipper firmly, or dirt in the zipper teeth or closing end.
1. Pull the zipper in a straight line, in a smooth and even motion. Avoid yanking or pulling to the side. Have another person help you if you cannot easily reach any part of the zipper. Be especially gentle in colder air and water temperatures.
2. Never force a jammed zipper. Unzip, examine the jammed point for obstruction or damage, then carefully try again. Zipping over a piece of dirt or underclothes can derail the teeth and ruin the zipper.
3. The zipper is most vulnerable to damage when you are getting in and out of your suit. Be sure the zipper is open completely, and try not to put force on the ends that could tear the zipper apart.
4. Keep sand and dirt out of the teeth and the closing end of the zipper. Clean the zipper occasionally with mild soap, water and a toothbrush. Lubricate occasionally with a light coat of paraffin, beeswax for metal tooth zippers. For plastic water tight zippers, a dab of McNett Zip Tech TM Semi-Solid Zipper Lubricant in the closing end improves sealing.
5. Dry suits should be stored in a clean, dry environment. Metal tooth zippers should be partially closed with the zipper slide left about 4 inches open. This will help alleviate pressure on the sealing elements. Plastic water tight zippers should be stored in the entirely closed position. Store either hanging or loosely rolled.
Broken zippers cannot be repaired but can be replaced. This work may be performed only by Kokatat at our factory; if you feel your zipper has been damaged, please contact Customer Service to obtain a Return Authorization Number (RA#).
Latex gaskets need to be treated every 4–6 weeks to prevent drying and cracking. Kokatat recommends 303 Protectant, available in 2 oz. and 8 oz. sizes. Small tears or holes in the gasket may be repaired with Aquaseal. Replacement gaskets and kits are available from your dealer or directly from Kokatat.
Kokatat (and some dealers) will replace gaskets for a reasonable charge. Kokatat will replace gaskets and socks on Kokatat garments only.
The most common repair on a dry suit is a gasket replacement. If a gasket needs attention you have three options: