GoreTex and Waterproof Workwear
When looking for waterproof clothing, whether that is for boots, jackets, trousers or gloves, you could be forgiven for thinking that GORE-TEX is the only material available to guarantee waterproofing.
GORE-TEX is the leading industry standard, and deservedly so, but there are other products and materials that meet official European standards EN 343 and are certified as waterproof too.
What makes something waterproof?
The EN 343 standard is measured by placing an amount of water on a material for a specific time and with a certain degree of pressure to see whether any moisture passes through it. Materials that withstand this test and do not have any water seeping through, are then considered waterproof.
Generally speaking, a waterproof material is made up of three layers:
1.The outer layer which repels wind and water, causing it to bounce from the surface.
2. The middle layer is a membrane designed to protect against any wind or water that does happen to get through the first layer, therefore acting as an extra defence to the first, giving the material double strength.
3. The third layer is inner lining which adds warmth and allows for breathability.
Are there other options available?
Other products and companies have their own versions of similar technology. As well as many GORE-TEX products, we also stock Regatta Professional, which uses IsoTex technology and Portwest products that use PWR technology. Both are alternative options that are waterproof and also breathable.
These qualities are determined on a microscopic level, but it is essentially a fabric that allows hot air to exit through the coat from the inside, however the water particles are too big to enter from the outside.
Which is the best option?
The best option depends entirely upon you, your budget, the design of the coat or jacket and what it will be used for. However, now equipped with the knowledge behind what and how waterproof products are certified, you will be able to make a more informed decision in choosing what might be best for you. Have a browse around our range of coats and jackets >
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