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AlpineRose
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PostThu Jul 26, 2018 2:38 pm 
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We all know DEET products damage gear.  However, on both their website and the spray bottle, Sawyer claims their Picaridin 20% repellant spray "won't damage plastics or synthetic coatings".  Product info

I beg to differ.  Based on a recent experience, I found this product will damage some gear, specifically DWR coated stuff sacks.  I had an unused bottle of the above spray in the top pocket of my backpack.  Somehow fumes or minute amounts of the spray leaked out and damaged a small silicone coated stuff sack next to it.  The coating got gummy, the letters printed on the stuff sack dissolved off, and there's a taste of repellant on the gummy residue.  I have thrown the stuff sack out.

The bottle itself didn't leak, but there were a few tiny droplets on the clear cap that covers the bottle.  I have never used the spray and didn't use it on this trip, as I didn't need it (hurray for Insect Shield clothing).

It was hot and I drove from sea level and hiked to 6400 ft.  Perhaps that cause the liquid to aerosolize and/or fumes to escape?

In any case, this experience makes me think it's best to use and store this product carefully around gear, particularly anything with a DWR coating.

Edited to add:  I e-mailed my stuff sack experience to Sawyers.
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hatchetation
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PostThu Jul 26, 2018 3:04 pm 
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Eeek - you caught my interest with this one. Their MSDS shows the 20% mix as having 30% Ethanol in the solution, that the solution is water miscible, and that there are no other ingredients they'd need to disclose.

Sawyer has a doc which goes more into the material compatibility issues - it's not confidence inspiring:
https://sawyer.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Picaridin-Research.pdf

See page 4 - they pretty much say "it's entirely fine with everything", then show a picture of some PVC plastic bits, then have some graphs labeled:

"Picaridin material compatibility with polyester fiber (Nylon)"

I'll leave it as an exercise to the reader to determine why that phrase is so disturbing.
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PostThu Jul 26, 2018 7:11 pm 
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hatchetation wrote:
Eeek - you caught my interest with this one. Their MSDS shows the 20% mix as having 30% Ethanol in the solution, that the solution is water miscible, and that there are no other ingredients they'd need to disclose.

Sawyer has a doc which goes more into the material compatibility issues - it's not confidence inspiring:
https://sawyer.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Picaridin-Research.pdf

See page 4 - they pretty much say "it's entirely fine with everything", then show a picture of some PVC plastic bits, then have some graphs labeled:

"Picaridin material compatibility with polyester fiber (Nylon)"

I'll leave it as an exercise to the reader to determine why that phrase is so disturbing.

I don't see the issue you are seeing with Picaridin in the document.   Picture shows Picaridin soaked PVC is the same as the control sample, whereas the DEET sample looks decimated.
Polyester graphs show major loss of strength and strain issues with DEET but pretty much no effect from Picaridin.      Seems like you are jumping to the wrong conclusions?

I have been having good luck with 20% picaridin until one recent mtn biking excursion with some of the worst mosquito clouds I have ever experienced.   Mosquitoes were piercing right through Permethrin treated clothing.  Mosquitoes were biting me right where I was spraying a new batch of Picaridin on the back of my calves.   Oddly, even though the mossy's were piercing the treated clothing, the only bites were on my calves.   I am wondering if they watered down the Picaridin.... Buying anything on Amazon these days is suspect.

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Forum Index > Gear Talk > Warning: Picaridin spray may damage some gear
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