How to Clean Horse Tack?

This article teaches riders how to clean horse tack. Including their leather tack, synthetic tack, and metal tack like horse bits and stirrup irons. It also included information about how to choose tack cleaning supplies and tack cleaner.


Cleaning your Horse Tack

Cleaning your Horse Tack

Leather has been the staple material used for horse tack for hundreds of years because it offers comfort, elegance, and durability. Today it’s used to create classic looking horse tack for riders of all disciplines that will last for years of use if properly cared for. Here we will walk you through how to clean your horse tack to make it last longer and look brand new.

How to Clean your Horse Tack

How to Clean Horse Tack? 

Leather tack can get dry and pick up dirt and grime from daily use over long periods of time. It is important to wipe down your tack after every ride with a damp cloth or small sponge. While wiping your tack, ensure your sponge is not too wet as using too much water on your leather tack can lead to dryness and cracking over time. Pay special attention to areas where the leather has been creased or pulled, like the rein creases or stirrup leathers. These areas get a lot of pressure while you ride so it’s important that they remain strong and secure. Cleaning your tack daily also gives you a chance to check these places for cracks or rips. Any damaged pieces of tack in high pressure areas should be replaced as soon as possible to avoid breakage while riding.

After applying a very thin layer of water, rub another thin layer of glycerin soap over the tack to close the pores and lock the moisture in. There are many different products you can use for this step, but all of them should be designed to moisturize or lock moisture into your tack.

Repeat these steps daily if you can, but if not daily you should clean your leather tack at least twice a month. Consistent care will keep your tack in great condition and looking beautiful for years of use.

How to Deep Clean your Horse Tack

How to Deep Clean Neglected Horse Tack

For dry, dirty tack that has not been cleaned for a long period of time, use a toothbrush, soft brush, or cloth to remove dirt and grime with warm water and saddle soap. Again, make sure you pay special attention to areas that receive large amounts of pressure while riding. You may have to really scrub to get the grime off as it sticks to the leather more and more over time. This step may take a while.

Some horse tack might have grown mold, or other forms of fungus while sitting in a damp barn. Though moldy tack looks bad, it is usually fairly easy to revive. Start by taking a warm cloth and wiping all the fungus from the saddle. You shouldn’t have to rub the tack especially hard to remove it. Then thoroughly wash the saddle with warm water and saddle soap like you would normally. Never use any kind of chemical cleaning products on the tack to remove mold as they can badly damage the leather.

Immediately follow all cleaning with a thin layer of glycerin soap or leather coniditoner to moisturize the tack. If you only use water to care for leather, when the tack dries it will be even more brittle than it was before. If a normal leather conditioner doesn’t suple the tack, special oils can be used to help bring the leather back to its original condition.

What to Clean your Horse Tack with

What to Clean Horse Tack With?

Most brands of horse tack come with recommended tack cleaner and conditioner listed on the manufacturers website. But there are also many tack cleaning supplies on the market that are safe to clean your tack with. You can use any form of gentle saddle soap, which can come as cleaning spray, gels, or bars. But always ensure that the saddle soap you choose can clean and moisturize your tack. Check out our leather & silver cre products for quality tack cleaning products.