How to Care for Wet Leather

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Many different kinds of damage can potentially occur if wet leather is left alone. Find out how to care for wet leather with help from a leather and vinyl professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Leather Care
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Video Transcript

Hi, this is Aubrey from the Leather and Vinyl Doctor in Utah, here to talk today about what to do with wet leather. Obviously, what item has been wet is going to have a bearing on how you actually work with it. But, let's assume that or let's just take the principle first, when you have leather that is finished, that is, it's got a fairly good coating to it, a durable coating it's a, always easy to identify a finished piece of leather by the fact that when you have water on it, it tends to beat up, it tends to, to not penetrate into the fiber or the leather. When you have that, you'll find that the shape of the leather itself tends to remain intact. It doesn't really lend, you know, start leading towards shrinkage. With an unfinished piece of leather or unlined piece of leather, this is leather that that's not really treated. They're, they're more raw. You find that there's a tendency for the leather to shrink. As those fibers get filled with water, they tend to, to either expand or shrink. In this case, most cases, they'll shrink as it dries, as that water leaves in and leaves those pores. So, the key is that you, you want to identify what type of leather you have because it's going to depend on how you're going to get it treated differently. So, the key to drying your leather is to not put it in the direct sunlight. You want to keep it in indirect sunlight and you want to facilitate the drying process perhaps by using a hair dryer. You can put it on a low setting and you know, just apply that to that, to that wet area. Obviously, it depends on, on how, to what extent the leather is, is wet. You know, if it's really saturated, it's going to take a long time to dry. You could, you know, in the event that it's, it's you know, really wet, dripping wet, you know, go ahead and dry it with a cloth. But, these techniques of indirect sunlight, of using a hair dryer to, to facilitate that drying process, keeping out of, out of direct sunlight and then with your semi-unlined piece or your unfinished leather, as it dries you want to keep stretching it. You want to keep moving those fibers so that they hopefully springing back to the original shape that they had. It's a little bit more vulnerable, they're more sensitive, the unfinished leather. So, you want to keep an eye on it as well for water marks and things of that nature which unfortunately there's not a lot you can do about that. But, if the whole piece is wet, then, there's a good chance that you won't get water marks in just one area; you'll be safe 'cause it's usually where there's delineation between the dry and the wet area. So, just keep in mind just to, to stretch that, that piece of leather and I think you'd be fine in that area. So, so, these are some general ideas as to how to take care of wet leather.

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