3 Best Tent Waterproofing Spray Products Compared (Buyers Guide)

Choosing the best tent waterproofing spray is just as important as selecting your tent.

Your tent and camping gear is an investment, so you could think of waterproofing as a safety measure to protect that investment.

And to protect you! Your personal safety extends beyond avoiding wild animals and remaining warm—you also need to stay dry.

So, we reviewed and compared the 3 best tent waterproofing spray products below to make sure you, and your gear, stay dry while camping!

DescriptionAwardPrice
Editor’s Choice Nikwax Tent And Gear Solar Proof Nikwax Tent And Gear Solar ProofBest Water & Solar ProofingSEE PRICE »
Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy-Duty Water Repellent Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy-Duty Water RepellentMost PopularSEE PRICE »
303 Fabric Guard For Outdoor Fabrics 303 Fabric Guard For Outdoor FabricsHonorable MentionSEE PRICE »

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Nikwax Tent And Gear Solar Proof

  • Best Water & Solar Proofing

As a clean, green option, Nikwax tops the list.

Why is Nikwax the best spray for water and solar proofing? It checks all the boxes – provides UV protection, waterproofing, strengthens tent fabric, and is the most affordable option!

It is a multi-dimensional product for waterproofing and sun protection that can work around your home or campsite.

As mentioned, the first great feature of Nikwax spray is that it protects your tent against UV rays. One simple application will protect your tent’s fabric from the sun (which degrades tent fabric over time) effectively allowing you to extend its service life considerably.

Nikwax makes it easy to add waterproofing to new and used tents, as well. The large bottle and spray nozzle make it easy to change the settings, cover a wide area, and spray several coats if necessary.

The water-based solution is safe for the environment and will not damage your lawn or the natural settings where you camp. It is also safe for the water supply as the solution does not contain PFCs, VOCs, or odors.

This colorless and odorless product is available in a 17-ounce or 34-ounce bottle, depending on your preference.

Product Video

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof Product Overview

Key features

  • UV protection
  • A biodegradable, water-based option
  • Waterproofing protection or renewal
  • Biodegradable plastic coats canvas and other fabrics
  • Colorless and odorless
  • Water-repellent polymers are used to stretch and move with your fabrics as you use them

Specifications

  • Brand: Nikwax
  • Size: Sold in 1.2 and 2.6-pound bottles
Pros
  • Adds UV protection
  • Biodegradable
  • Eco-friendly formulation
  • Waterproof coating or renewal
  • Cleaning properties
  • A breathable layer of protection
  • Odorless and colorless
Cons
  • There’s a lack of guidance concerning how much to spray on each piece of fabric
  • It may need to be tested on other fabrics before use
  • The product is so effective that it might saturate certain fabrics
Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

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Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy-Duty Water Repellent

  • Most Popular

Why is this one of the most popular waterproofing sprays on the market? Kiwi has been a trusted brand since 1906.

You can benefit from the company’s vast experience when purchasing any of their products, and the quality of its range has earned a solid reputation.

Kiwi has long been a preferred name in fabric cleaners, polishes, and waterproofing. Your grandfather might have even shined his shoes with Kiwi polish.

Kiwi Camp Dry water repellent comes in a small canister that is easy to store, spray, and reuse as needed. It is designed to create a waterproof barrier around any fabric. While you may use this spray on your tents, it also works on hunting gear, shoes, tarps, boat covers, awnings, or other fabrics.

Kiwi Camp Dry, when properly applied, will not stain the fabric of your tent or add an odor. The silicone used to make Kiwi tent waterproofing spray will bond to fabric and create a waterproof seal that is invisible. The high-velocity nozzle helps you coat problem areas with ease.

You can see it as you spray, and the liquid will bubble for a moment before settling so that you can track your progress.

The bond created is breathable, which guards against humidity within the tent.

Key features

  • Silicone provides a waterproof seal where it has been sprayed
  • The silicone seal is breathable
  • A high-velocity spray nozzle helps saturate the zone you are spraying
  • Colorless and odorless

Specifications

  • Brand: Kiwi
  • Size: 10.5 oz. can
Pros
  • Name-brand recognition—you know you can trust Kiwi
  • Easily coats the problem areas that might leak
  • Small canisters that are easy to transport
Cons
  • If you are not careful, you might overfill certain parts of the tent
  • May need more than one can for a large tent
  • The silicone base is not biodegradable
  • The spray might evaporate with intense and prolonged contact with sunlight
Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy-Duty Water Repellent

Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy-Duty Water Repellent

Price:
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303 Fabric Guard For Outdoor Fabrics

  • Honorable Mention

How did the 303 Fabric Guard receive an honorable mention? The particular spray was created by Sunbrella for performance fabrics. If Sunbrella trusts these sprays, there’s no reason you shouldn’t try them.

The 303 Fabric Guard spray is actually one of the best waterproofing sprays for outdoor fabrics of all types! It’s designed to protect and prevent stains on various items, from umbrellas to awnings, tents, and outdoor clothing.

You can use this repellent anywhere, and it will not damage your fabrics, change the color, or affect breathability or flammability. The product cures in 12 to 24 hours, which you can then test with a quick spray of a hose after it dries.

You can spray the 303 Fabric Guard on any type of tent, from older cotton-based tents to newer synthetic models. And while you’ll certainly benefit from the stain and water resistance, it will also resist dirt and debris (making cleaning your tent a snap).

A 16 oz bottle will cover 75 to 100 square feet, so you should be able to spray a large tent with a single bottle. They even offer travel-size bottles you can bring with you camping in case you need to touch up some spots.

Key features

  • Adds resistance against water and stains
  • Suitable for both natural and synthetic fibers
  • A 16oz bottle covers up to 100 square feet

Specifications

  • Brand: 303 Products
  • Size: Various sizes between a 2 fl. oz bottle up to a 128 oz jug

Pros
  • Suitable for use on all performance fabrics
  • Designed by a company that manufactures performance fabrics
  • Prevents stains and water leakage
  • Works on natural or synthetic fabrics
  • Adds breathable protection
Cons
  • The manufacturer notes that the coating can sometimes be evaporated by sunlight exposure
  • You must keep the fabric completely dry during the 12 to 24-hour curing process
303 Fabric Guard For Outdoor Fabrics

303 Fabric Guard For Outdoor Fabrics

Price:
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Waterproofing Spray Buyer’s Guide

When looking for the best waterproofing solution, it’s essential to know what to look for – added features they may contain, their impact on the environment, and, of course, how to get the most value for your dollar.

UV Protection

Your tent is exposed to all kinds of elements while you’re out camping. And none are as damaging as the sun’s rays to your tent’s fabric!

Combining waterproofing technology with UV protection will not only keep your tent dry inside but can effectively add years of life to your tent!

UV protection, unfortunately, is not a standard feature in most tent waterproofing sprays, but you will find it in our top pick, Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof Spray.

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Price:
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If you’re a regular camper, your tent is an important investment, so it’s best to protect it in every way possible.

Stain Protection

A quality waterproofing solution should always offer stain protection. And not from just spills, rain, and other liquids, but from the spray itself!

Low-quality sprays that don’t absorb completely or evenly into the fabric can cause discoloration and stains themselves.

All of the products mentioned above will protect against stains and are invisible.

Breathability

Inferior waterproofing products trade waterproofing ability with breathability.

What does this mean? They may be good at effectively repelling water but at the price of reducing breathability and airflow in your tent. This is not what you want when camping in any season, as that can actually increase the amount of moisture in your tent in winter and hold in heat and make your tent stuffy in summer!

All three products reviewed above add an effective and breathable waterproof layer to your tent.

Think Green

If you love spending time out in nature, it’s important to protect it.

Water-based, biodegradable solutions are safe for the environment. When you spray and rinse the tent, you don’t want to emit harmful chemicals into the local water supply or your lawn. These environmentally friendly solutions are also safe for pets and other animals within the ecosystem.

In addition, the type of spray can have an impact on the environment. Look for spray bottles instead of aerosol cans, as they have zero impact on the environment and your health. While aerosols, though typically easier to spray and produce a finer mist, actually contribute to global warming by boosting the warming effects of greenhouse gases.

Budget-Friendly

Luckily, most good waterproofing spray products are fairly reasonably priced. And our top pick, Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof, is actually one of the cheapest products per ounce on the market.

Plus, long-term, Nikwax even helps protect your tent’s fabric from sun damage while improving the tent’s durability, thus helping you save money in tent costs for years to come.

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Price:
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Buy Now on REI

Clicking this link to make a purchase may earn us a commission at no additional cost to you.

FAQs

Should I Waterproof My Tent?

We recommend waterproofing your tent when it needs it, whether it’s brand new or used.

You can test this by setting the tent up in your backyard and spraying it down with a hose. If you see water seeping through the fabric or the seams, it’s time to waterproof it.

See Do I Need To Waterproof My Tent for more information!

How Much Waterproofing Solution Is Needed?

The amount of waterproofing solution needed will depend on the product you use. Be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s directions thoroughly.

For example, Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof recommends using approximately 2fl oz (50ml) of product per 10 square ft of fabric.

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof

Price:
Buy Now on Amazon
Buy Now on REI

Clicking this link to make a purchase may earn us a commission at no additional cost to you.

How Do I Waterproof A Tent?

Waterproofing your tent is a simple 3 step process. We’ll quickly outline that process here, but check out our how to waterproof a tent guide for all the juicy details and some important tips.

  1. Clean the tent: The first step is to clean the tent with a gentle cleaner like dish soap and a sponge. Rinse the tent off. Check out our guide on how to clean a tent for additional information.
  2. Seal the seams: Next, you need to seal the seams using Gear Aid – Seam Grip WP Sealant Adhesive. Simply brush the sealant on the outside seams using either the included applicator or a paintbrush. 
  3. Apply tent waterproofing spray: Lastly, while the tent is wet, apply your tent waterproofing spray to the tent evenly (don’t forget to waterproof the tent fly, as well, if you have one). Wipe off any excess product with a cloth. Let dry completely out of sunlight.

Don’t forget to test the tent’s waterproofing by spraying it down with a hose after it has completely dried.

How Long Does Tent Waterproofing Last?

Your tent’s waterproofing, whether factory-applied or you applied it yourself, will not last forever. Over time as your camping tent is used and exposed to the elements, the waterproofing will slowly degrade.

How long it lasts will vary, but a good way to tell, as we mentioned above, is to test it out periodically. Simply set up your tent in the backyard and spray it down with a hose. If you see water seeping through the fabric or the seams, it’s time to re-waterproof it.

Check out our guide on how long tent waterproofing lasts for more information.

How Do You Waterproof A Tent For Cheap?

You can waterproof a tent for cheap by using Nikwax Tent & Gear Solarproof, which is one of the cheapest waterproofing sprays per ounce.

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