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How to Clean Your Leather Saddle

Learn how to clean your horseback riding saddle with the help of Blain’s Farm & Fleet.

You spend hours caring for your horse. Be sure the leather saddle you ride on gets the proper care it needs, too. Cleaning and caring for your saddle is a quick way to protect one of investments you’ve made in riding. Follow these steps to ensure your saddle is properly cared for.

How to Clean Your Saddle
Caring for and cleaning your horseback riding equipment is just as important as caring for your horse. Protect your investment and learn how to clean your saddle with the help of Blain’s Farm & Fleet.

1. Use a saddle rack –  Place your saddle on a saddle rack or sturdy fixture where it can rest properly without falling. Wipe the saddle off with a moist sponge or paper towel to remove any loose dirt or mud. Once the loose mud and debris is gone, you can start deep cleaning.

2. Start small – Don’t apply the saddle soap over the entire saddle and expect to wipe it all off properly before it dries. Dampen your sponge, but make sure it is not dripping wet. You don’t want to get any excess moisture on the leather. Dip your moist sponge in the soap and work into a lather on the saddle. Work in small circles, rinse and re-lather the sponge frequently. Start with the top layer, then move to the bottom. Do not apply the saddle soap to any suede parts.

3. Wipe the saddle clean –  Wipe residual soap off with a damp towel, then again with a dry one to make sure all of the soap is removed from the leather. Be sure to get deeply clean all the crevices, too.  A tooth brush works great to remove any dirt. You can also try using a q-tip to remove the soap from the folds after cleaning.

4. Condition and protect the leather – Next, you will want to condition your saddle to help seal and protect the leather. Lanolin oil is a great product to use when conditioning the leather. Using a dry cloth, apply the oil to the saddle very sparingly. Too much oil may soak through the leather and damage the padding on the underside.

5. Clean off any metal parts –  Next, clean off the silver or metal fittings if any soap got on them while you were cleaning the leather. Repeat the above process for cleaning the stirrups.

Caring for your horseback riding equipment is just another part of your equestrian lifestyle. Whether you’re getting ready for the Midwest Horse Fair or simply riding on the farm, Blain’s Farm & Fleet has everything you need to care for your horses. From horse grooming supplies to horse tack to hoof care, you’ll be ready to ride. For more tips on riding equipment and horse care, visit our Hobby Farming blog.


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