How to Clean Leather Welding Gloves?

The essential features of a good welding gloves are they need to be heat-resistant, flame-resistant and arc flash resistant and also need to offer protection against cuts and punctures!

And all these features are best provided by leather gloves.

Yes, leather gloves are the best when it comes to protection from welding, but leather is a delicate material that needs proper care and maintenance or else the leather will tend to become dry and get damaged with time.

And if you are wondering how to keep your leather gloves clean in order to increase its life, let me tell you, you have arrived to the right page!

This article has in store for you all the proven and effective ways to clean your leather gloves.

While only cold water and a saddle soap will be enough to get your leather gloves cleaned thoroughly, yet there are correct steps to do it. And do not ever forget to apply a good leather conditioner after the cleaning work and do not use direct heat to dry the leather gloves or else they will shrink!

That seemed quite easy right?

Yes, all the ways are in fact, very easy and interesting too. So, let’s grab them all…

How to Clean Leather Welding Gloves 1

Can you put welding gloves in the washing machine?

Yes, you can wash your leather gloves in the washing machine, provided you don’t turn on the drying cycle and use a mild detergent for the purpose.

But the fact is that washing the leather gloves in the washing machine can make wear and tear in the leather gloves, especially in the edges and the stitching. Also, using the dryer can stretch the leather or fade its color. 

Steps to wash leather welding gloves

Leather can be from any animal skin, like cowhide, sheepskin, goatskin, and pigskin! But thank God the ways and steps to clean them all are the same.

So, without putting much pressure on your memory, you just need to follow the simple cleaning steps below for your leather welding gloves:

1.) Start with the superficial cleaning:

Now why I call this step as superficial cleaning is that it involves only cleaning the visible outside dirt and grime from the leather material. For doing so, you need to have a soft bristled brush or a clean dry cloth.

Just brush off the dirt and debris from the leather or just wipe them with the cloth. You don’t need to use any product in this step. This is just the dry cleaning of the leather!

2.) Washing the leather with a soapy solution:

This step will clean the inside out of the leather and you would be needing mainly two items for this: saddle soap and cold water.

You can either rub the saddle soap directly onto the leather surface or you can make a soapy solution in cold water and then use a toothbrush to clean the pores of the leather.

I suggest you can do both for a perfect clean-up. Do not forget to turn the gloves inside-out and wash the interior of the gloves too.

If the gloves are too dirty, I would recommend soaking them in soapy solution for a couple of minutes before washing them with your hands and then rubbing with the brush. Then you can just wash off the soapy solution with clean cold water.

3.) Wrap the leather gloves in a towel:

This step will ensure that the towel soaks in all the water from the leather gloves and the gloves would be already semi-dry. Do not ever try to squeeze the leather in order to drain the water out. This will deform the leather gloves.

4.) Let the leather gloves dry under the fan:

Applying any form of heat to leather is not suggested and therefore, it is best suited to dry the leather gloves naturally under the fan.

5.) Do not forget to condition your leather gloves:

Washing the leather with soapy solution takes away all the essential oils from the leather, thus rendering the leather dry devoid of any moisture, due to which the leather can start to crack in time.

Therefore, after drying the leather, it is always best to condition them with a good leather conditioner. This will ensure that the leather retains its natural elasticity and flexibility and the shine.

Precautions while washing leather welding gloves

Leather is too delicate to handle, a single wrong step in its care can damage the entire leather and therefore you must take the following precautions while washing your leather gloves:

1.) Do not use bleaching agents on leather

2.) Do not use any detergent that has chemicals in its composition

3.) Do not dry your leather gloves in the dryer

4.) Do not dry them in the sun

5.) Do not use hot water to wash them

6.) Do not squeeze out water from the leather gloves, it will deform the leather

7.) Do not use agents such as rubbing alcohol, vinegar to clean the spots because that would degrade the flame-resistant coating of the welding gloves

Best way to clean leather welding gloves:

The best way to clean your leather gloves is to use your hands to wash them with a gentle soap (chemical free) and cold water. 

In case your gloves are not too dirty, then a gentle scrub with just a damp clean cloth will get the loose dirt and grime off.

And it’s a wrap!

Leather gloves does the job of providing you safety and its your duty to take proper care of the leather in order to make them last longer!

While there are other ways as well to clean leather gloves, like using rubbing alcohol, vinegar, etc.,

I would not suggest them to be used in welding leather gloves as the welding gloves are coated with flame and arc-resistant films and using any such harsh chemicals can damage the coating and decrease the potential of the leather gloves in protecting you against the welding sparks and heat.

Hope this post was useful to you and you will stay tuned for more of my posts on work wears!

Hope you have a good day guys, until we meet again!

Steve Goodman
Experienced welder with 7+ years of expertise in all the latest welding techniques MIG, flux and stick welding, drill press, crane operation and metal fabrication. Welding certificate course graduate and 2018 Excellence in Welding award winner.

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