How To Care For Your Wetsuit

How To Care For Your Wetsuit

If you're into open water swimming, you know that slipping into your wetsuit can feel like gearing up for an epic adventure.  

Whether you're conquering waves or gliding through serene lakes, your wetsuit is your trusty sidekick. But to keep it in top shape and ready for countless swims, you need to give it some TLC.  

Here’s your ultimate guide to wetsuit care, ensuring it lasts for years and through hundreds, if not thousands, of swims. 


Top Tips for Wetsuit Care and Maintenance  

Step-by-Step Wetsuit Care Guide 

Get Rid of the Sand and Grime 

Shake It Off: Before you rinse, give your wetsuit a good shake to remove sand and debris. This prevents tiny particles from abrading the neoprene. 

Attach the Lining Protector 

Protect your suit: Avoid letting the Velcro make contact with the inside lining of the wetsuit as this will pull on the sensitive fibres, make it bobble and weaken the material. Keep the Velcro covered when you’re not wearing your wetsuit with the fabric patch that is provided. 




Rinse Immediately After Use 

Freshwater Rinse: As soon as you’re out of the water, give your wetsuit a thorough rinse with COLD freshwater. This is the most important step of them all because saltwater, chlorine, and even lake water can damage the neoprene over time. Use a hose, big bucket or shower to wash away any residues. Hot water can make neoprene less flexible and prone to damage so keep it cool. Be sure to rinse both the inside and outside of the wetsuit to really care for it as residue can build up on both sides. 

Spot Clean: If there are stubborn spots (like from mud or algae), gently rub them with your fingers or a soft cloth while rinsing. 

Turn It Inside Out 

Drying the Right Way: Flip your wetsuit inside out before drying. The inside lining needs to dry first since it’s usually the dampest part. This helps maintain the suit's outer layer in good condition. Putting on a dry wetsuit is much easier than putting on a damp one, so drying it inside out is also a benefit if you’re planning to swim more than once a day (lucky you!). 

Hang It Properly 

Avoid Stretching: Use a wide hanger, preferably a wetsuit hanger such as a C-Monsta , to hang your suit. With a wide hanger, you can fold and hang the suit at the waist because regular hangers can cause the shoulders to stretch and deform. 

Out of Direct Sunlight: We recommend initially hanging it over the bath or in a shower, so the excess water can drip without making a mess. Then, hang your wetsuit in a shaded, ventilated area. Direct sunlight can cause the neoprene to degrade and lose its flexibility.  

Let It Dry Completely 

Inside and Out: Once the inside is dry, turn the wetsuit right side out and let the exterior dry completely. Ensuring both sides are dry prevents mould and mildew. 

Store It Correctly 

Fold Gently: If hanging isn't an option, fold your wetsuit gently. Lay it flat and avoid sharp creases that can permanently mark the neoprene. 

Cool, Dry Place: Store your wetsuit in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. 

Occasional Deep Clean 

Wetsuit Shampoo: Every few uses, especially after swimming in heavily chlorinated pools or polluted waters (or if you have peed in your suit!), wash your wetsuit with a specialised wetsuit shampoo. Essentially you want to massage the shampoo into the inner lining to wash away any left over grime or germs.  

Be sure to use a specific shampoo made for washing wetsuits as normal hair shampoo may contain ingredients that can damage neoprene! Follow the product instructions for the best results. 

Rinse Thoroughly: After washing, rinse your wetsuit thoroughly (with cool water as we said above) to remove all shampoo residues. 

Repair Promptly 

Fix Small Tears: If you notice small tears or loose seams, repair them promptly with wetsuit repair adhesive such as the Black Witch wetsuit repair kit . Ignoring minor damage can lead to bigger problems down the line. 



What NOT to Do with Your Wetsuit 

A wetsuit is a big investment so by taking good care of it you, it will last you a long time. Proper wetsuit maintenance is important but it’s also key to rememeber what NOT to do.  

We know there isn’t always time to give it a proper wash but at the very least: 

Don’t Leave It in the Trunk: Never leave your wetsuit in the trunk of your car for extended periods. The heat can cause the neoprene to deteriorate. 

Don’t Hang on Thin Wire Hangers: Thin wire hangers can leave indents and stretch the neoprene. Always use a wide, padded hanger or fold gently. 

Don’t Wring It Out: Never wring out your wetsuit like a towel. This can cause unnecessary stress and damage to the material. 

Don’t Put In the Washing Machine: Whatever you do and no matter how much you might think this is the right thing to do, do not put your wetsuit in the washing machine. It will tear, it will become weak and damaged and ruin your wetsuit completely. 

Don’t Store It Wet: Storing your wetsuit while it’s still wet can lead to mould, mildew, and bad odours. Always make sure it's completely dry before putting it away. 

Don’t Use Harsh Chemicals: Avoid cleaning your wetsuit with harsh chemicals, detergents, or bleach. These can damage the neoprene and reduce its flexibility. 

ZONE3 Wetsuit Warranty 

When you buy a wetsuit from ZONE3, we offer you 12 months warranty as standard but if you register your wetsuit you can extend the warranty to 18 months. 

We know you’ll love your wetsuit and take good care of it after reading this wetsuit care guide, but our warranty will give you that extra peace of mind. 

Taking care of your wetsuit doesn’t have to be a chore. With these simple steps, you can keep your suit in top condition, ready for the next swim, surf, or dive adventure. Happy swimming!