Knowing exactly when to replace your work boots can be a bit tricky as we all assume that shoes can last lifelong though the fact is that they do have a definite lifespan. And in this post, safety expert Steve Oddvar Vicantas will share with us his opinion. Below mentioned are some signs that indicate that your boots are past their expiration date.
Dented or Damaged Toes
You should replace your work boots immediately if the toe guard gets damaged. You should inspect the toe guard thoroughly for any signs of physical damage. In the case of steel toe guards or caps, the damage is quite apparent, as you can see dents in the toe.
On the other hand, boots made up of composite materials might be badly damaged but will not show any signs of damage. For example, if you drop a heavy thing on your steel toe guard, it will develop a dent which gives a clear indication that it needs to be replaced.
On the other hand, if something heavy drops on the composite toe guard, it may not show any signs of damage but could be irrevocably damaged. So, work boots must be replaced immediately if the toe guards get dented or damaged, or else your feet will not be protected.
Separation of Seams and Parts
Any sign of damage on the outside is an indicator that the work boots have reached their expiration date. To see if the outsole is damaged or not, check the rim for any spots of tearing or chipping. If you’re a dairy farmer who works daily on your farm, this would be even more important.
Look out for upper separations. If the uppers are separating from soles, it is a sign you need to replace your work boots. You should also inspect your shoes left, right, and center for any holes or puncture and, on noticing any sign of damage, replace your shoes immediately.
Wrinkling and Tilting
A boot will wrap and wrinkle on being exposed to friction, moisture, and heat, and, above all, wear and tear. A midsole provides cushion and extra support and also wears down very quickly.
You must pay attention to a few signs such as wrinkling or compression of the outer midsole area or lower shock absorption or less cushioning when walking.
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A crack or a cut or puncture on the boots can cause leakage. You should evaluate the fitness of your rubber shoes and look out for any cuts or holes that can result in leakage.
Either remove the insole and fill it with water to look for leakage, or you can place the paper towel inside the shoe and leave your shoe in a bucket of water overnight, and the water should be a few inches below the top of the shoe if the paper towel comes to damp the boots need to be replaced.
Zero traction means poor gripping. Reduced traction means you will slip or slide more. If there is an increase in falls and slips, then you should check underneath your work boots to see if any ribbed or spiked surface has worn down. If yes, it’s time to replace your boots.
Replace your work boots on seeing any abovementioned signs for ensuring the protection of your feet.