How To Tell When Your Tactical Boots Go Bad? | 7 Signs To Repair Your Tactical Boots

Tactical boots are used for challenging terrains and different weather conditions. However, their lifespan depends a lot on how you use them and take care of them.

So, how to tell when your tactical boots go bad? What are the signs of repairing or replacing them? Today, we are going to show you all these signs and some ways to fix these problems in this article.

How to tell when your tactical boots go bad

Depending on the damaged levels of your tactical boots, you can fix them yourself, take your boots to a cobbler or… buy a new pair if they are in the worst situation.

Remember, let the professionals do their jobs, don’t try to fix things beyond your skills or you will end up buying new tactical boots.

Here are some alerts to tell when your tactical boots go bad. Maybe it’s time to repair your boots before they can’t be fixed anymore.

Now, find out which are the problems of your tactical boots!

Actually, it is easy to recognize these changes on your tactical boots, unless you ignore them or are too lazy to care for your boots (which is not good at all). For a short reminder, these signs will tell you when your tactical boots go bad: scuffs (scratches, cracks, rips…), faded color, broken eyelets and stitching, worn-out soles, smell, discomfort and non-waterproof.

Scuffs/ scratches/ cracks/ rips appear

It’s unavoidable to have some scratches on your tactical boots as they have to expose harsh conditions and extreme weather. In the worst case, your boots will rip in some areas and the leather will start to peel off.

You can cover a small crack, but it may take you more effort to repair but if there are many rips. You can cure these scratches by sanding these areas and covering them with shoe polish that has the same color with the leather of your tactical boots.

After all, buff your leather boots to make the cover consistent with them.

You can see more ways to fix a rip in tactical boots here!

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Faded color

Tactical boots look weathered and don’t have the consistent color or lose their original color. You can condition and polish them (if they are leather). In the case that you have fabric or suede tactical boots, don’t ever polish them, apply the conditioner spray is enough to protect them.

Damaged eyelets and frayed stitching

This seems to be a real problem as it needs skillful hands to resolve eyelets and stitching. With broken eyelets and worn-out stitching, you can ask for the warranty or take your tactical boots to the repair shop for their sake.

The soles are worn out or come off

After a long time of use, your tactical boot soles will get worn a lot. If the soles seem to be flat, but the tactical boots are still in good condition, then you don’t need to buy a new pair, just resoling them is enough. Choose a trusted repair shop and let a cobbler do that for you. Then you can get back a pair of tactical boots with brand new soles to accompany you more time.

Can you resole combat boots?

Yes, instead of throwing away your tactical boots, you can restore them by giving them a brand-new look with genuine Vibram® soles. You can check out the video below to see how combat boots are resoled.

Unpleasant smell

If you notice that your tactical boots get an unpleasant smell, it means they need cleaning, especially the inside. You need to clean the inside of your tactical boots to remove this smell and help boots avoid cracking from the inside. Check out our step-by-step guide here.

You feel uncomfortable when wearing

When wearing boots, once you feel uncomfortable or experience foot pain, you should detect the problem. Does this discomfort come from the insole or the midsole?

In the first case, the insoles of tactical boots get worn and can’t cradle your feet anymore. Things are simple, just buy a new pair of insoles to insert into the tactical boots.

On the other hand, if the problem comes from the midsole, you feel that there is no cushion and support anymore, well, it’s another matter. Resole your boots if possible, or shop for a new pair of tactical boots for your comfort and convenience.

Your tactical boots get soaked up

When your tactical boots get wet and let water invade them easily. This means that they lose the waterproofing ability. Clean, Condition and Waterproof your tactical boots to withstand wet conditions. How do you waterproof tactical boots? Check it out!

Some notes for caring tactical boots

Clean them after use

You should take some time and clean tactical boots after using them. since it is no good leaving them in the dirt for a long time. Cleaning is the ultimate step to protect and prolong tactical boot lifespan. Don’t forget to clean inside the boots to remove smell; and take off the laces of boots before cleaning so that you will not forget to wipe out any nooks and crannies.

Condition, waterproof and preserve

These are essential steps to protect your tactical boots. This way, water cannot invade your boots anymore. Check out How to waterproof tactical boots. Also, store your tactical boots in a ventilated place, avoid direct sunlight or damp places.

Boot trees are always the top choice for preserving boots to help tactical boots stay in shape, absorb moisture and keep the pleasant smell for boots.

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Care routine

“Prevention is Better than Cure”

That means you need to have a care routine for your tactical boots. What should you do to completely protect your boots? Determine the materials of tactical boots and choose the suitable method below.

Here is a complete guide to care for suede tactical boots.

How about leather tactical boots? For your references, there’s a series of preserving them:

Above all, if your tactical boots are way damaged too much and you can’t cure it anyway. Last resort, of course, that is:

Buy new tactical boots

It is the right decision to buy a new pair of tactical boots since new is always better 😉

Welcome the new companion for your trip, treat them well so they can stay with you long.


Actually, it is easy to recognize these changes on your tactical boots, unless you ignore them or are too lazy to care for your boots (which is not good at all).

For a short reminder, these signs will tell you when your tactical boots go bad: scuffs (scratches, cracks, rips…), faded color, broken eyelets and stitching, worn-out soles, smell, discomfort and non-waterproof.

Again, you should have a care routine for tactical boots depending on their materials. Clean, Condition, Waterproof and Polish (for leather boots) are the primary steps to give your boots the best protection as well as a glamorous look. Also, don’t forget to clean inside tactical boots, it’s important too.

Anyway, can you restore your tactical boots like in this video?

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