Tips You Need To Know Before Machine Washing Leather Chaps

Tips You Need To Know Before Machine Washing Leather Chaps

Leather chaps are primarily worn during horseback or motorcycle riding. They protect the rider from abrasions and also their outfits from getting dirty. Due to this leather chaps can accumulate dirt and mud over time which results in significant damage.

What does dust do to leather?

Dust is all around us and is composed of several elements. Once it settles on top, dust particles erode the surface. These tiny dust particles rub against each other and act as abrasives scuffing the leather’s surface.

Here are a  few tips you should know before dunking your leather chaps into the washing machine:


  • Before putting your leather chaps into the washing machine, make sure you have closed all the zippers of the leather chaps; to protect both the leather surface and the machine tub from getting scratched.
  • If you are washing more than one leather chap, it is best to separate light ones from the toned ones because the stability of the dyes varies.
  • If you have a smooth leather chap, turn it inside out to avoid the surface from getting scuffed while washing.


  • Take a soft brush and remove the dirt gathered on the leather surface.
  • It is best to wash light-toned leather chaps in cold water, so, set your washing machine in a cold water wash or rinse setting before putting in the leather chaps.
  • For dark-toned leather chaps, use a cold water wash or rinse in a delicate cycle setting.


  • After the cycle is finished, remove the leather chaps from the washing machine and unzip the zipper to allow the leather chaps to dry evenly.
  • Keep the leather chaps in a dry and ventilated place; avoid direct heat or sunlight as this may damage and shrink the leather fibers.
  • Apply a generous amount of leather softener to the leather chaps while they are damp and leave them to dry. This will help maintain the leather chaps’ flexibility.

While some cowboys may take pride in their battered leather chaps and consider them a status symbol, leather chaps must be kept clean. For avid bikers and horseback riders, they are extremely useful and functional pieces to own, and keeping them in mint condition will help you preserve them for years.

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