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Boots get a mildew odor: solutions?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

I do take the liners out about every five ski days. maybe not  enough. but the liners have a slight mildew odor from moisture in the layers I guess. I don't want to put in some powder that gets all gewey, but I want a nice fress scent for my feet. any suggestions? for between liner and shell? for inside liner? bleach wipe? scholls foot powder? take the liners out more? thanks.

post #2 of 28

Do you use a boot dryer?  I've found drying after every day and removing the liners every few days is nearly enough.

 

Actually it's enough to satisfy me.  My wife, however just bought me some Natural Odor Eliminating Pearl Packs from Fresh Wave:  freshwaveworks.com  They're little bean bag thingies that contain the natural extracts of lime, pine, aniseed, clove and cedar.  Maybe they'll work.

post #3 of 28

mmm cat piss in the boots smell, i got sick of that and got a dryer, actually i used a hair dryer for a while and ruined some technicas and then bought a boot dryer

post #4 of 28

White vinegar cuts through and eliminates any odours, all you need and cheap.

post #5 of 28

You should take your liners out at the end of every ski day so they can dry completely and the water trapped in the shell can evaporate.  Doing that will solve your problem.  Do that and you won't need a boot dryer and will probably never have funky liners again (can't guarantee it, but I never get funky liners even after several years).

post #6 of 28

Bounce fabric softener sheets work well on a daily basis.

post #7 of 28

Hydrogen peroxide will eliminate the odor too.  It kills the stuff creating the smell.

post #8 of 28
Thread Starter 

reality is so demanding. but real.

 

you do know the stiffer the boot, the more of a PIA chore that is? but we're in water, therefore the battle with molds and mildews rages on.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by exracer View Post

You should take your liners out at the end of every ski day so they can dry completely and the water trapped in the shell can evaporate.  Doing that will solve your problem.  Do that and you won't need a boot dryer and will probably never have funky liners again (can't guarantee it, but I never get funky liners even after several years).



 

post #9 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SquawBrat View Post

Bounce fabric softener sheets work well on a daily basis.

This does help the odor and boot dryers will do wonders for them. Even helps between shell and liner.

However, a heated boot bag is the best!!! Zip Fit/Hot Gear.   I even got my lady one for Christmas!! 

If skiing several days in a row, I'll put dryers in them besides(not the fan driven variety.) Be careful not to overheat and change your fit. In addition, it makes stiff boots easy to put on and when you put them on you will be amazed at how good they feel. As I said in another post, I wish I could use the bag to make them easy to remove.
It also makes it a lot easier to remove the liners from stiff boots.

 

post #10 of 28

Resolve carpet cleaner >> Bounce.      Boot dryer idea is still a win.

post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 

Do boots get moisture trapped between shell and liner even on cold days with dry snow? I used to assume not, but could well be in error.

The boots will come apart every ski day. And clean socks. That's just how it's going to be. rolleyes.gif

 

But how is the fabric softener sheet used? once I get things smelling rosey, I'll keep it dry. thanks for the suggestions.

post #12 of 28
Boot dryer. My boots smell good cause I always dry the liners/shells with a dryguy passive dryer and never wear a ski sock twice. It's a pain to take the liners out every time but worth it. My dragon 120s aren't that tough to take out a put back in.

Have heard about a heated gear bag and how freaking magical they are. Might be worth it if your liners are a PITA to take out, and the extra gear you can put in them.
post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post  Do boots get moisture trapped between shell and liner even on cold days with dry snow? I used to assume not, but could well be in error.

The boots will come apart every ski day. And clean socks. That's just how it's going to be. rolleyes.gif  But how is the fabric softener sheet used? once I get things smelling rosey, I'll keep it dry. thanks for the suggestions.



Yes.  The moisture is from your feet sweating.  I have clear plastic boots; I can see the water beads on the inside of the plastic, and it's obvious when when it's all gone.  I use a little fan overnight to dry them out in my room.  I don't use heat; I've messed up custom footbeds blowing hot air into boots in the past.  The fan does the trick.

post #14 of 28

Good luck.  I had that problem with some old liners and never was able to get rid of it.  Bleach, lysol, nothing ever managed to kill it.  Finally just had to part ways with the liners.  Now I take my liners out after every day.

post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

Do boots get moisture trapped between shell and liner even on cold days with dry snow? I used to assume not, but could well be in error.

The boots will come apart every ski day. And clean socks. That's just how it's going to be. rolleyes.gif

 

But how is the fabric softener sheet used? once I get things smelling rosey, I'll keep it dry. thanks for the suggestions.



Put a  Bounce sheet in each boot after skiing and leave it in there till the next ski day.  Depending on how "challenging" your boot environment is, you can get mulitple days of skiing out of a single sheet. 

 

post #16 of 28

Even without leakage, condensation will form inside the shells due to interface between "warmer" foot-filled liners (which lose some heat) and "colder" snow-immersed shells.

post #17 of 28
Thread Starter 

Is this for skiers who don't take the liner out of the shell EVERY day?  Is this an odor masking device or is there antiseptic or anti-fungal value?

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SquawBrat View Post



Put a  Bounce sheet in each boot after skiing and leave it in there till the next ski day.  Depending on how "challenging" your boot environment is, you can get mulitple days of skiing out of a single sheet. 

 



 

post #18 of 28

Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

Is this for skiers who don't take the liner out of the shell EVERY day?  Is this an odor masking device or is there antiseptic or anti-fungal value?

 


I've seen this tip before and have always assumed it's the former (odor masking only).  If anyone thinks otherwise, I'd be curious what chemical in the fabric softener sheet is doing it.  I would think you'd be much better served with something like a Dr. Scholls spray that's actually has an anti-fungal chemical in it.  However I still think the best option is taking them out and drying them every night.  I take mine out and put them upside down on a forced-air heat register; dries them out very fast.

post #19 of 28

I had the same problem until I got a Hot Gear Bag. Now I'm a happy camper (and so are my boots!). Boots, gloves, neck gaiter, and socks are all dry and toasty warm the next morning. icon14.gif

 

Prior to that, I had to remove everything from inside the shell (including the boot board) and wipe it all down with a weak bleach solution, including the outer vinyl parts of the liner. I found that Odo-
Ban judiciously sprayed inside the liners several days in a row finally killed the smell totally.

 

If you have Langes, a leaky toe dam is likely your biggest culprit and duct tape over that section of the outer shell will at least lessen the problem.

post #20 of 28

Odor is a symptom of the problem (mold).  Bounce will only mask the symptom and won't solve the problem (you will still have mold and mildew growing in your boots, and they will still smell, but the smell of the bounce will compete with it).  Take your liners out daily so they (and the boot shells) can completely dry out and the problem (not the symptom) will be solved.  You don't need to do anything more complicated than that.

 

post #21 of 28

My last pair of ski boots got that funky smell that you describe.  After doing a search, I tried a product called Mirazyme.  It is the detergent that divers use to wash their wetsuits and dive gear, it can be purchased online or at any dive shop.  Check out their website.   

 

It doesn't mask the smell but attacks the bacteria causing the smell.   After soaking my liners in a solution that stanky smell was eliminated.  I used a mixed solution in a bottle to spray my liners every so often to keep my liners smelling fresh.

 

post #22 of 28

 Cat litter! A scoop of (fresh unused obviously) cat litter in the liners will absorb any moisture, just hoover it out before you replace the liners in the boots.

post #23 of 28
Thread Starter 

funny image: when using bounce and kitty litter to kill the fungi and then overpower it: I'm standing by the top lift station and someone comes sliding by, unzips my jacket, and throws in some light colored laundry to dry.  Then a cat comes slinking by and.....rolleyes.gif

 

won't the existing slight trace population of mildly malodorous fungi die if the boots are out in a warm dry room next to the stove for a few days? (my pass blocked, so this is my big chance) or do they just go dormant in their little podola and wait for.....SKIING!ski.gif (image of malodorous fungi taking a run)

post #24 of 28

Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

won't the existing slight trace population of mildly malodorous fungi die if the boots are out in a warm dry room next to the stove for a few days? 

 

You would think, but my experience says no.  I skied in liners that smelled like mildew for several years before my wife made me get rid of them.  Once the problem started (and I know exactly when it started, I made a stupid mistake after a warm, wet, slushy spring day), it never went away.  I religiously took my liners out after that, and as I said, tried bleach, etc, but somehow could not manage to kill whatever had penetrated deep into the foam.  If yours aren't too bad yet, maybe yes.  But there is apparently a point of no return, and I managed to pass it.

post #25 of 28

Wearing merino socks first helps. They naturally transfer sweat and don't smell bad so your boots don't either. Icebreaker underlayers work the same way too.

post #26 of 28

Has anybody had any experience with the stuff hunters use to cover up their odor when out in the field?  It promises to stop any odor at all that deer could recognize.  Perhaps that stuff could work, too.

post #27 of 28

I've had pretty good luck with Boot Juice. You can get it at Reliable Racing, although I suspect there must be someplace local that sells the same thing or something very similar with a different name. Febreeze works reasonably well too. I suspect that alcohol is the main ingredient in both as it kills things and evaporates quickly. I keep a can of Boot Juice in my locker and spray it in my liners once every few days of skiing before putting them on the boot dryer.

post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by ONedge View Post

My last pair of ski boots got that funky smell that you describe.  After doing a search, I tried a product called Mirazyme.  It is the detergent that divers use to wash their wetsuits and dive gear, it can be purchased online or at any dive shop.  Check out their website.   

 

It doesn't mask the smell but attacks the bacteria causing the smell.   After soaking my liners in a solution that stanky smell was eliminated.  I used a mixed solution in a bottle to spray my liners every so often to keep my liners smelling fresh.

 

 

Another good product similar to this is WIN Sport Detergent.  It's designed to kill the bacteria & mold that causes the funk.
 

 

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