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Caring the Hard(ware) Way

We’ve covered at length the steps required to make sure that tent top fabric remains in tip top shape throughout its lifetime. Reducing damage, mold and mildew resistance, proper repairs and pin-hole maintenance – all of these are a great way to make sure your tent installations continue to look fabulous year after year.

Not often do you hear much about care and treatment for your tent hardware – the tent stakes, poles, tubes and ratchets or rope ties that keep the tent fabric aloft. While more resistant to wear or easier to replace than the fabric, this doesn’t mean you should just leave them out in the cold, shaking and hungry.


Second only to the fabric top in importance are the tubing and poles that keep the top up. These needs to be inspected during every use to make sure they haven’t become bent or warped, as this can lead to shelter failure during installation or use. Beyond obvious distortion, poles and tubes should be checked for rough ends (as these can damage tent fabric) and for any signs of rust; these can be treated if caught early and extend the life of your hardware.

Ratchet Straps and Ropes

Easy to purchase in bulk, ratchet assemblies and ropes are still high enough on the list of expenses as to make them more of a hassle to re-purchase often. This can be easily avoided with proper care, specifically if they get wet and need drying – make sure that they are laid out in an area to completely dry before storage to minimize the chance of mold growth within the fibers.

Should they become dirty, make sure to use warm water to rinse off the rope, straps, and hardware. Use soap if necessary, but be sure not to scrub too hard as you can wear down any resistant coating on the hardware or fray the rope or strap fibers and make mildew a more pressing issue.


Stakes are the easiest hardware to maintain. Due to their in-ground nature, they won’t be showing any wear because you can’t see them! Stakes can be treated for rust resistance, and should be inspected for any damage that may make them unusable (bending, head removal, etc.) regularly.

It’s also important to note that shipping and moving large amounts of stakes is hard work. They’re heavy. This can be a powerful deterrent when you start to think about replacing entire inventories of stakes if you’re exceptionally worried about aesthetic appeal.


Due to the cheaper nature of fasteners, when a few become damaged they can easily be replaced. The amount of time, energy and resources required to repair simply fasteners isn’t worth it when they can be purchased in bulk and kept for later use. Do be sure to recycle any fasteners that become damaged.

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A quick once-over of your hardware after each installation can greatly expand the usable lifespan of your tents, and catch very early any damages or wear that can endanger you and your guests. For more in-depth information on tent care, cleaning and usage feel free to visit the Celina Knowledge Center. Have a more specific question? Call us at (866) 438-8368 or send an email any time to Sales@CelinaTent.com.