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How many paddling days should I get from a Kokotat drysuit?


May 26, 2007
Campbell River
One of my friends had a problem with getting his leaky first kokotat drysuit fixed ... but the dealer made things right. He has since worn out the replacement suit & is ready to buy a new suit. Listening to the whole saga makes me realize that I am now wearing my drysuit a lot more than I used to. My suit is 5 years old, had about 30 days use before this year, and I've used it 30 days this year.

from kokotat's website
All Kokatat products are fully guaranteed to the original owner against defects in materials and workmanship. Products found to be defective will be repaired or replaced at Kokatat’s option. Repairs due to normal wear and tear, accident, abuse, etc., will be made for a reasonable charge

(1) How many paddling days did you get from your kokotat drysuit before it leaked?

(2) Did kokatat say your suit leaked due to wear & tear or due to a defect?

(3) What did they charge you to fix it?
I bought my Kokatat Expedition Drysuit this year, have used it for about 40-50 days so far. So far its still in good condition, BUT... after only 18 days (on an expedition) I started getting some serious chaffing/rubbing damage in the armpit area... perhaps not expected.

A good friend, after about 130 days of use, said his drysuit was starting to give up the ghost. However recently, a facebook post mentioned he sent his back to the manufacturer, and they are sending him a new one.

Personally, I think you should get a good 250 days from a drysuit if its taken care of properly. My old kokatat paddling jacket, while by no means perfectly dry, still does the job after probably 400 days of use.

Anacdotaly, I have heard of issues with modern Kokatat drysuits... quality is not as high as it used to be. Have you looked at PALM drysuits?
Kokatat Goretex suits seem to last forever

The first thing to realize is that a little leaking is not a death knoll for a drysuit. It is probably just a few small holes here and there (likely in the feet if you have attached booties). If that is the case it just needs to be patched and Kokatat will do that (and pressure test it) very cheaply. I got mine repaired this summer for about $15 US. I have a friend who has almost seventeen years on her suit.

Another thing for upkeep is to reapply the water repellency to the outside - this can be done at home through wash in products like Revivex. This keeps it from getting wetted out and helps it keep breathing.

If it's not a goretex suit it is the same thing - but in my experience the non goretex stuff isn't as breathable nor as durable so repairs may be more common.

good luck,
Yeah I'll agree with you Bryantb... good care and maintenance of any product drastically increases the longevity of any product.

I've had mine for 5 years. It leaks badly now ( aqua seal time again ).

Still have the original wrist seals on it but have replace the neck three times.

Main zipper is starting to fray quite a lot, but still mostly watertight.

I have well over 300 uses on the thing, but too many pin holes have started to appear too often.

Hoping I can get through the winter and early spring training sessions, but will definitely replace after that.

I do use my suit whilst instructing so most likely I'm far far harder on it than the vast majority of people.
i have gotten about 250 days use out each of my last 2 suits. i use them hard and often.

the environment i coach in is sandy as hell so that tends to wear them out faster.

Kokatat is AWESOME for re-conditioning a suit for you.

I am now a firm believer in re-selling my dry suit after 1 season of use and purchasing a new one each year in order for it to work it`s best, not to mention it makes for a nice, inexpensive suit in good condition to offer to people looking for a suit who can`t afford full retail for a new one.

winners all around!