Leather is a popular material for horse tack and equestrian equipment because it offers good grip, is flexible enough to break in for a rider’s comfort and is exceedingly durable when properly maintained. This article will act as a guide to taking care of your leather equestrian equipment in order to maintain its functionality, durability and potential resale value.
Why Leather Needs Care
Leather is a flexible and durable material that is made from the rawhides of animals, cattle mostly. Due to the fact that it is made from hide it needs to be taken care of, because, just like skin, it can dry out, become brittle and crack or break. Horse saddles and other equestrian equipment made from leather should be cleaned, cared for and stored properly after every use. This way they will look great and function properly for years to come.
Steps for Cleaning and Caring for Leather Equestrian Equipment
After a ride, the leather has likely come into contact with sweat and dirt which need to be cleaned off to preserve the material.
1. After every use of the leather equestrian equipment dust off the surface before using a moist cloth or sponge to wipe it clean.
2. Next, you will need to rub a very thin layer (too much will leave it sticky) of glycerin soap which will seal pores in order to keep the material soft and malleable. There are specially developed leather care products that you can also make use of to clean and preserve your leather equestrian equipment available from Trident Saddlery.
3. Add a conditioner to preserve the leather. Trident Saddlery makes a convenient spray conditioner for ease of use. When treating a horse saddle be sure to only use the product on the flesh side or top side.
This is essential to the durability and lifespan of your leather equestrian equipment because this is where it will spend all of its time when not in use.
4. Be sure that your tack room or wherever you are storing your equestrian equipment is free of rodents. During times when food is scarce rodents have been known to make a meal of leather products. To ensure you don’t lose your expensive leather equestrian equipment to the appetites of vermin, be sure they are kept out at all costs.
5. Stored horse saddles and other tack should be covered in fabric or newspaper to allow the material to breathe, but still remain covered. In damp conditions be sure to check for the growth of mildew.
For more information and for a selection of quality horse equipment cleaning and care materials, contact us at Trident Saddlery.