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5 Ways to Remove Stubborn Tree Sap

If tree sap has ever gotten on your tent, you know the difficulty and pain of trying to remove it. You´ve also probably heard a million different ways to get rid of it. If you have invested money into the best family cabin tent money can buy, you might want to think carefully before you attack the tree sap with the strongest chemical under the sink. Choosing the wrong one, (commonly an alcohol based one) will destroy your tent´s waterproofing abilities and might leave you with drops of water on your forehead when you´re camping through the next rainstorm.

Here is a definitive list of things to try, which start with the least harmful to your tent fabric, and which may work on the first try. For more stubborn stains you may move up the list in terms of strength. For ANY of the methods suggested below, always test in an inconspicuous or unimportant area of fabric and look for weakening or staining of the fabric. This is your responsibility to make sure you don´t turn a minor problem into a larger one.

* Animal fats found in Mayonnaise or Butter – These provide lubrication to stubborn tree sap stains and can be washed out with water and a mild soap. Because everyone usually has some in the refrigerator, these should be first on the list to try.

* Hand Sanitizer – Gentle and leaves no residue, it´s characteristics make it an ideal tree sap remover.

* Baking soda on a damp rag – A number of campers swear by this method, using another simple home remedy.

* OFF! - Your first stop if the home remedies weren´t effective and you´re looking for a commercial product. Many camper testimonials back this up as a great tree sap remover designed for the purpose.

* Rubbing Alcohol or Goop Hand Cleaner are options, but be VERY careful with these products. Use them diluted if possible, they can damage your tents fabric. Always wash the area with mild soap and water after you are done removing the tree sap.

Congratulations! At least one of these options should have worked for removing stubborn tree sap stains. If you have the budget, it might be worth investing in a water-sealing spray on the area to prevent any waterproofing loss during the cleaning process.

Do you have any suggestions for removing tree sap that aren´t on the list? Write in the comments below your method for removing tree sap.

Thanks to Sam for the tips, an avid camper and outdoorsman. Be sure to check out his review on Columbia Cougar Flats ii family cabin tent.
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