How to stop leather boots from squeaking. Leather has been one of the most popular footwear materials for years. Various footwear fashion trends have come and gone, but leather boots have never gone out of fashion.
But, one common issue with leather boots is that they may squeak while walking. We know that squeaky shoes are not exactly dangerous for a wearer. However, they can be quite annoying and bothersome.
It is hard to put up with an annoying squeaky pair of boots for too long. A lot of people just ignore the squeaky sound and hope that it goes away on its own or that they will get used to it. The bad news for them is that even after the first thousand squeaks, you will not get accustomed to the annoying sound, and it will not go away without you doing something about it.
At some point or the other, you will find yourself online, searching for solutions to the problem. Of course, before you jump into the solution, it is a good idea to try and understand the problem itself, and what causes it. Not everybody faces the squeaky boot problem, but it happens often enough that you may find yourself searching for a solution.
The first thing to think about is why the squeaking noise even happens in the first place.
Understanding the Squeaky Mechanics
That noise that your leather boots are making is essentially sound energy. This sound is created due to the vibration of two or more surfaces with each other. You must have dealt with squeaks before – perhaps from your car’s brakes while you are driving? The brakes should not squeak, and when they do, it is a sign for you that there is a problem. Squeaky boots are kind of like that. While there is no threat to your life like there is with bad brakes, squeaky heels of your boots might break off if you run really fast.
Most of the time, squeaky leather boots are not an issue, but there is always that odd chance it might be a bad sign.
Do Your Brand New Leather Boots Squeak?
If you have just spent a lot of money to buy a brand new pair of genuine leather boots, it is natural that you want to wear those boots and show them off to people around you. You want everyone’s heads to turn as you walk past them so they can check out your boots and admire them – just for how they look and not the strange sound that they make.
If your brand new leather boots are squeaking, there is only one thing we recommend that you do: Return them to the seller immediately. Brand new leather boots can easily be replaced at no extra cost. If they try to get you to keep the boots saying that all leather boots squeak, let them know that you know that leather boots do not squeak. Get them replaced immediately.
Has Your Favorite Pair Started Squeaking?
If you have been wearing your leather boots for a while and you just noticed them squeaking, chances are you cannot return them. This is where fixing the squeaks is the only solution. A lot of you might be worried about messing with your favorite old pair because you have never worked on boots before.
While getting them to a skilled cobbler can help you resolve the problem, we think it is entirely unnecessary. Why waste so much time effort and money on hiring someone when it takes little to no effort to fix them yourself?
We have a few easy solutions that you can use right at home to fix your boots. Don’t worry. There is no high level of skill required. All you need is a basic understanding of the problem, a little patience, and some common items already in your house. This guide will help you understand the problem and what you can use to solve it.
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Why Do Your Leather Boots and Shoes Squeak?
As mentioned earlier, two surfaces rub against each other and the vibration creates that sound. The most likely reason your boots are squeaking is how the leather upper section is attached to the sole of the boots. The sole is the part of the shoe that comes under your foot and makes contact with the ground. The upper section is basically everything above the sole.
When these shoes are being manufactured in the factory, there is a chance for slight imperfections to take place when the two sections are being put together. This might be a minor issue at first. However, even a small amount of friction between the two components can cause your boots to create the most annoying sound later on.
Don’t assume that the manufacturer gave you squeaky boots on purpose. Most of the time, it is very difficult to tell if there was a problem at the production stage. The squeaking usually begins when the owner of the boots starts walking in them.
The problem itself is very simple – luckily, so is the solution. We have put together basic methods to help you fix the squeaky boot problem. They can work differently based on the boots you own, so you might not get a solution with one or two of these. All of the solutions do not require any special skills, so you can easily try a few before you find the one that works for your boots.
How to Stop Your Leather Boots from Squeaking
Before you get started, select an area where you can work. Ideally, your garage or basement could work well. You just need to make sure you have space to spread out, and the area is easy to clean up because there is always the chance you will make a mess.
If you cannot arrange any space like that, you can just lay down rags or newspapers on the floor and start working on the boots. Once you have the workspace set up, it is time to get to work.
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1. Method 1 – Use Talcum Powder
All you need for this method is:
- Baby powder, corn starch, or talcum powder
- Glue (optional)
Examine the problematic boot and check if the liner inside it can come out easily. Several boot models come with removable inner liners. Take out the inner sole and set it aside. It will give you access to where the upper section joins with the sole on the inside of the boots.
If your boot does not have a removable inner sole, you need to remove it (a little tactfully). Once you resolve the problem, you can glue it back into the shoe. If you don’t want to remove the inner sole, just take it to a cobbler for the solution instead.
Once you have removed the inner sole, you need to apply the powder. It does not matter which one of the suggested powders you use. All of them have the same purpose. They help reduce the moisture between the upper and sole, allowing both surfaces to slide against each other smoothly instead of rubbing and vibrating.
Make sure you use enough powder to cover the whole area. After applying the powder in the boots, set the pair aside for at least a day. This will give the powder more than enough time to absorb excessive moisture within the shoes.
Once you have given it more than enough time, remove the extra powder by knocking the boots from their heels with each other. Place the inner lining back into the boots (glue them in if necessary) and just start walking. This is the most common method to resolve the squeaky boot issue and it should work.
If this doesn’t work, try method 2.
2. Method 2 – Use a Dryer Sheet
All you need for this method is:
- A dryer sheet
- Glue (optional)
Method 2 is actually similar to method 1 in all ways but: instead of using the powder, you will use a paper towel or a dryer sheet.
Remove the inner lining from your boots, and then place a paper towel or dryer sheet between the sole and the loner. Again, the dryer sheet or paper towel will absorb any excess moisture leading to the vibrating sound in the shoes. Make sure you secure the sheet in place within the boots before you leave it to dry.
Once you have given it enough time to dry out, remove the sheet, place the inner lining back and then walk the walk. If even this method doesn’t work, there is a whole different approach you can take with method 3.
3. Method 3 – Drying the Boots Manually
All you need for this method is:
- Crumpled newspaper sheet (optional)
Instead of the binding between the upper and sole, the leather boots might just be squeaking due to excessive moisture. It is not uncommon for moisture to accumulate within the shoe over time. Leather is not exactly the most breathable material, which can lead to sweaty feet.
You need to dry out the boots manually.
1. Air dry your boots
The best way to dry out your boots manually is to hang them in a warm and dry room. Remove the inner lining so that the drying process is faster. Just hang the shoes by the laces somewhere on a coat rack and leave it to dry.
While you might think that leaving them out in the sun is a good idea, the heat from the sun can actually damage leather. Just leave them hanging in a room away from direct sunlight, be patient, and the problem will go away.
2. Use newspaper
Old newspapers can always come in handy around the house for a number of applications. Even if you don’t have baby powder or talcum powder, you will likely have old newspapers lying around the house. Remove the inner lining and fill up the shoes with it.
Completely fill the newspapers into the boots until there is no more space and leave it overnight. The paper will absorb the moisture out of the shoes much like the dryer sheet. Hopefully, this will take care of the problem.
4. Method 4 – Oiling the Boots
All you need for this method is:
- Coconut oil or mink oil
Sometimes, removing moisture from the boots is not going to cut it. The problem does not even go away by using baby powder or dryer sheets. The leather rubs against the sole where they are joined together, creating friction.
Just like how you’ve done with the previous three methods, you need to remove the inner lining from the boots. Once you remove the inner sole, apply mink or coconut oil around the joint between the sole and the upper section.
The oil lubricates the two surfaces making contact with each other, minimizing the friction between them. Leave the oiled boots overnight so that the oil dries up naturally. Once the oil dries, just place the sole back into the boots.
If all other methods fail, oiling your boots is definitely going to work.
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How to Choose the Best Method for Use
Any of these methods can help to remove squeakiness from your favorite pair of leather boots. Choosing which method to go for really isn’t that difficult. Just start with the solution that is the most convenient for you.
The talcum powder solution is the most widely used one because it is convenient and works almost all of the time. A lot of people also go for coconut oil.
While it happens very rarely, it is not unheard of that none of the methods work. Try these methods to remove the squeak, and in case they do not work out, just take your boots over to a professional cobbler. They will remove the problem for you.
We hope you found this guide useful. We understand how annoying it is to deal with squeaky shoes and we are confident that this guide has given you everything you need to know so you can use your boots squeak-free.