The end of your camping trip is near and your bags are packed. The only thing still left to do is to break down and store your tent. Although this may not be the first thing that comes to mind, the lifespan of your tent is largely dependent on how well you store it after use. By storing your tent properly you can even prolong its life!
Below you will find a step-by-step plan and a number of handy tips for the breaking down and and the storage of your tent.
Breaking down your tent
- First, empty the tent completely and clean it thoroughly using a dustpan and brush.
- Close all zippers, but leave one – the entrance zipper, for example – slightly open. Doing this will prevent air from being trapped while rolling up your tent.
- Remove the pegs from the ground, rinse them to remove any soil and dry them to avoid rust.
- Take the tent poles out of the tent and fold them. Most tent poles are equipped with an elastic band that holds the segments of the pole together. If used incorrectly, the elastic may become dry and brittle. Therefore, when breaking up your tent, always ensure that you first gently pull the pole apart in the centre, after which the subsequent pole segments should also be taken apart in the middle. In this way, you will ensure that the elastic is not subjected to uneven tension.
- Lay the tent flat on the floor and put all tent lines on it, pointing towards the centre. Then take two corners of the tent and fold them into the centre; followed by the other two corners. After this, fold the two rectangular sections so that one lies on top of the other, resulting in a single rectangular shape. Roll up the tent with the tent poles in it and put it back in your tent bag.
Tip: always roll up the tent in the direction of a section where air can escape, for example a window, open zipper or other point of ventilation.
Storing your tent
This is probably the most important tip to ensure a long life for your tent: always make sure that your tent is dry before you store it. If you have to break down your tent before it is dry, always ensure that it is properly aired and dried at home before you store it. If you store a tent when it is damp, you will most probably find mould in your tent within days. Not only does this cause an unpleasant smell; it also adversely affects the watertight properties of the tent fabric.
Be sure to store your tent in a dry and dark place at an even temperature. If you store it anywhere subject to damp or condensation (like a shed or a humid attic), mould is lurking around the corner.