Skip to Content

If you buy something using links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Here's how it works.

How Long Do Tents Last Before Needing To Be Replaced

How Long Do Tents LastDetermining how long do tents last before needing to buy a new one can be as difficult to answer as the classic saying “How longs a piece of string”. There are varying reasons as to why one tent will last 2 years when another tent will still be going strong after 12 years.

So there is no one answer suits all with this question. However, there are ways to determine which tent will last longer while also ways to help your tent endure a much longer lifespan.

A high-quality car camping tent is likely to last longer than a tent exposed to creek and river camping for example.

So if you’re planning on purchasing a new tent for yourself, you’re going to want to make sure you choose the right tent. If you want to pick out the perfect tent, there are a few questions you’re going to want to answer.

For example, how long do tents last? Here’s what you’ll want to learn before you buy a tent or consider upgrading your worn out tent.

Factors Which Influence How Long A Tent Can Last

The Type Of Tent.

*Regardless of the type of tent you own, for increasing how long your tent lasts you should always have ground protection down. The tarp or tent footprint should always be smaller than the tent to prevent flooding inside the tent when it rains.

The material your tent is made out of will certainly determine how long you should expect from your tent. The two main types of tents are nylon and canvas.

Nylon is the more common tent material, however it has a shorter lifespan. The advantages of nylon are they are lightweight and are cheaper to buy.

A canvas tent is more heavy duty and can potentially last you a lifetime. These are made from thick canvas material which is ideal for winter or cold weather camping due to their insulation. The disadvantage of a canvas tent is that they are expensive and can be quite hot during Summer.

Canvas tents are prone to mold and mildew when not stored correctly. To ensure the lifespan of a canvas tent, you need to ensure you remove mold from the canvas on a regular basis.

Expose To The Elements Can Shorten The Tent’s LifespanWeather Shortens Tents Lifespan

It’s inevitable that your tent will endure the full range of elements Mother Nature has to throw at you. There’s no way of avoiding this and to be honest, it’s all part of the camping experience.

However, there are ways to combat raging winds, thunder storms and blistering UV rays which can expand the shelf life of your tent. Insane winds can eat away at your seams and tent pole sockets.

Over time this can cause rips and the need for repairs. Camping in an area that is better sheltered from raging winds is ideal.

Protect Your Tent From Rain & UV Exposure

When it comes to rain and the suns blistering UV rays, you need to service your tent every 6 to 12 months to ensure greater protection. By service, I mean a simple task in which you can do at home or at camp.

That is to apply a UV & Waterproofing spray to the tents materials. Along with sealing the seams of the tent with a simple roll on seam sealer. Not everybody know this, but a tent won’t stay waterproof forever. New tents bought out of the store often need an additional coat of waterproof immediately. Then further applications 6- 12 months after.

The Size Of Tent & Frequency Of Use

A fairly obvious factor which will determine how long your modern tent will last is how often you use. Do you go camping once every 2 years for one weekend. Or do you go 4 times a year for the course of two months. The more you use your tent, the greater wear and tear it will encounter.

The size of your tent matters as it typically means fewer people are going to be using it. This is the same as the number of rooms your tent has. For example, a three room family tent is likely going to have 4-8 people causing potential damage to the tent versus a single person dome tent.

Figure Out Where To Buy Your Tent

You’ll want to make sure you choose the right tent. However, before you can do that, you’re going to have to decide where you are going to be buying your tent. There are a number of retailers that sell items like tents.

If you want to have a lot of options, you’re probably going to want to buy your new tent online. When you order from an online retailer, you’ll have a ton of options to choose from. Buying a tent online will also make it easier for you to research tents ahead of time.

Learning From Reviews

No one wants to waste their money on a tent that is a piece of junk. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to figure out whether or not a tent is a good buy just by looking at it.

You should try to read a number of reviews when you look at tents. While reviews aren’t a perfect source of information, they are a great way to learn more about a product.

Reviews will help you to find the tents on the market that are getting a lot of praise. They’ll also help you to avoid tents that other people have had bad experiences with.

Looking At FeaturesWays To Make Tent Last Longer

Different tents have different features. Some tents are pretty basic; they simply provide you with some shelter to sleep under. However, there are other tents that offer a lot of appealing features.

You should take the time to look at features that different tents offer. You should try to gain a better understanding of the options that are out there.

If you find yourself drawn to specific features, you can look for tents that offer those kinds of features. If none of the features you’re seeing stand out to you, you can buy a feature-light tent.

The Lifespan Of Tents

The answer to the question “how long do tents last?” is going to vary based on a number of factors. Some tents will last a lifetime. Other tents may only last for a few years.

The quality of a tent is going to have a direct impact on the lifespan of that tent. If you want the kind of tent that will last for decades or more, you’re going to want to make sure you buy one of the top tents on the market. If you’re buying a tent for your kids to play around with, you can be a little less fussy.

What To Consider When Shopping For Tents

When you’re buying a new tent, you need to think about how you are going to be using that tent. How many people are going to be sleeping in the tent? How are you planning on carrying that tent?

If you’re going to be carrying your tent for miles, you’re going to want to pick a tent that is lightweight. If you’re trying to find a tent that your entire family can fit into, you’re going to want to look for a larger tent.

Ultimately, the best tent for you is going to vary based on what your needs are. You should figure out what you want before you start looking for your tent. If you know what to look for, you’ll be able to identify the best tent for someone like you.

Deciding How Much You Want To Spend

A lot of people are shocked when they see how much tents can cost. High-end tents can be very costly. With that said, you shouldn’t allow yourself to be put off by the prices that you’re seeing. You can find tents at a lot of price points.

Instead of balking at high prices, you should decide how much you would like to spend and remember the higher quality tents will last longer in the long run. So if you plan to go camping quite a lot, then don’t sacrifice quality for price or you may end up buying a new tent every season.

When you set a budget for your tent, you should think about how often you are going to be using that tent. If you plan on using your tent at least once a month, you may want to splurge on a more expensive tent. If you’re not going to be using your tent all that often, you might want to find a budget-friendly option.

Maintenance & Love Can Make A Tent Last Forever

Shopping for tents can be a long and complicated process. There are so many things you will have to figure out before you make your choice. With that said, if you figure out the answers to questions like “How long do tents last?” you’ll eventually be able to choose a tent that’s a wonderful fit for your needs.

With the proper care as mentioned above (UV & Rain Protection) and by selecting the best tent you can afford it is certainly possible to find a tent that may last as long you wish.