15 Mar Five tips to help you care for your canvas bell tent
Your bell tent is not just designed to keep you camping in style for one festival season or adventure getaway, but a durable product that will last for years to come – IF you look after it. Although canvas tents are treated with waterproofing and anti-fungal agents, being exposed to the elements can create some problems. But if you follow these tips and show your tent a little love, it will serve you well into the future.
1. Don’t store your tent away wet
The “golden rule” of owning any cotton canvas tent is to never store it either wet or damp. All our tents have been treated for mould resistance, but this will be ineffective if you pack it away for days or weeks when there is still moisture trapped inside. Sometimes you have little choice but to travel home with a damp tent, but make a point of hanging it out to dry as soon as possible. At Psyclone Tents we’ve tried to make this as easy as possible, and our bell tents are the only ones on the market with a hanging loop at the top for you to simply sling over your clothesline or garage.
2. Pitch your tent correctly
It may sound simple, but erecting your tent properly will help to ensure its longevity. If your tent is not pitched correctly, the canvas can become strained, eventually leading to damage. Make sure you follow the assembly guidelines of your Psyclone Tent each and every time you pitch it to ensure it performs to its optimum!
3. Let your tent breathe
Like any confined space, cotton canvas tents will get musty if enclosed for days on end, and a build up in condensation can easily transform into mould if air isn’t allowed to circulate. This is largely affected by climate and will differ depending on your location. Make sure you open up the doors and windows regularly to let your Psyclone Tent breathe, even if you are not using it on a daily basis. Not only will you reduce the risk of mould, but keep you tent smelling fresh!
4. Keep your canvas tent clean both inside and out
Where you pitch your canvas tent and what you are using it for will largely determine its level of cleanliness. But it is in your best interests (and will improve the longevity of your tent) if you keep it as clean as possible. Wipe down the interior roof and walls with a natural anti-bacterial solution on a regular basis, and avoid the use of chemical sprays inside which can be detrimental to the natural fibres of the canvas tent.
If dust accumulates on the outside, wipe it off with a soft brush, and the occasional warm soapy bath or hose down, followed by a long dry in the sunshine, will prevent the build up of bacteria or mould. Also remember to re-apply waterproof silicone spray once a year to keep your tent dry on the inside.
5. Deal with mould naturally
A build up of mould is the most common problem associated with canvas tents, which can not only rot your canvas, but exacerbate a number of respiratory infections and allergies. If you follow the tips above, you can help prevent mould in the first place, but if it does take root, then it’s best to deal with it naturally.
Harsh detergents, bleach and commercial mould removers can damage the colouring, waterproofing and UV inhibitors of your Psyclone Tent and should be used sparingly or in a diluted solution. We recommend that you hang your tent up to dry in the sun and open the doors and windows to increase ventilation. When the tent is completely dry, brush off the majority of the mould spores with a stiff, brittle brush and some elbow grease then send the vacuum over the canvas to remove those that remain.
Make up a solution of one-part white vinegar to ten-parts water and apply it to the canvas with a soft rag. After allowing your Psyclone Tent to completely dry, pack it up for storage, ready for your next festival or camping adventure.