Back to FAQs »

Are SoulPads Waterproof?

Canvas tents are not inherently waterproof and anyone who tells you so is probably just trying to sell you their tent.

SoulPads are treated with a waterproofing agent. So although the canvas itself is not waterproof, the agent will help the canvas to repel water.

Soulpad_%c2%a9jamesbowden-8

The effect of this treatment is to make water 'bead' on the surface of the canvas (see photo above) and either run-off or evaporate. The effectiveness of this treatment varies on how long and how often the tent has been used, primarily due to factors such as UV radiation, water composition and canvas wear and tear.

It's also important to remember that cotton expands when wet, closing the gaps between the cotton fibres and working with the waterproofing treatment to keep the rain out - and the soul in.

Some canvas tents will need to go through a process of weathering (the wetting and drying of a tent) in order to become completely water resistant. More on that here.

SoulPad tents can withstand really heavy storms and are a very hardy shelter indeed. They are intended for light leisure use. Specifically, the SoulPads have been designed for use in the United Kingdom’s lowlands, and are ideally suited for use between the months of March and September inclusive. However, it is reported that they perform well in the snow too (see images below).

If erected and maintained properly, a SoulPad will keep you dry for many many years.

The SoulPad canvas is treated with organic fluorine to make it waterproof. Organic fluorine is not petroleum-based. Organic fluorine is extracted from fluorine ore. It has a hydrostatic head of 400mm minimum (most manufacturers will quote the maximum).

It is worth noting that the hydrostatic head reduces with exposure to UV on a nylon tent. Soulful campers should not focus solely on the hydrostatic head when selecting the right tent to purchase. Our cotton canvas and ultralite blend have numerous other beneficial characteristics which also need to be considered.