What is a Polycotton Tent?
A polycotton tent is made out of a hybrid of polyester and cotton fabric. The benefits of a polycotton tent include better breathability and less condensation than a polyester tent, plus they usually last longer. On the other hand, a polycotton tent is not fully waterproof and will usually weigh and cost more than a polyester tent.
Polycotton tents can be found in a number of sizes and styles. Polycotton inflatable tents are a popular choice, as they are easy to erect. With all the same benefits of a polyester inflatable tent, a polycotton air tent offers the best of all worlds.
Find out more with our Polycotton Tents Buying Guide
Do Polycotton Tents Need Waterproofing?
Most polycotton tents are usually around two thirds cotton and one third polyester. This means that they behave a little more like cotton than a synthetic material. You will need to waterproof your polycotton tent yourself if you want the same level of waterproof protection as a polyester tent. You do this by putting it through a weathering process and applying a waterproof spray.
When you first buy your new polycotton tent, you would ideally weather it before you take it on a trip with you. Unlike polyester tents, polycotton tents don’t have taped seams, which means water can seep through the stitching holes. To prevent this, you just need to carry out the following weathering process:
- Pitch your tent
- Leave it out while it rains or wet it with a hose or sprinkler
- Allow it to dry before packing away
This process causes the thread within the stick holes to expand and fill in any gaps. You only need to do this once in your tent’s life. However, like a polyester tent, you should also re-apply a waterproof tent coating every few years if you want to have the best rain protection.
How to Waterproof a Polycotton Tent
Waterproofing a polycotton tent is no different to waterproofing a polyester tent. Make sure you have put it through the weathering process above first. This should give you a good level of waterproof protection, though your polycotton tent will need refreshing with a waterproof coating after a couple of years’ usage. To do this, take a look at our guide on the Best Way to Waterproof a Tent.
How Good are Polycotton Tents?
There is an array of tent materials in the market today, so you may be wondering exactly how good polycotton tents are. For many it’s a personal preference, while for others it might come down to cost. To help you, here are the pros and cons of a polycotton tent compared to a polyester tent:
|Polycotton Pros||Polycotton Cons|
||No taped seams
||Bulkier to pack