The two technologies work in the same way as they use a fabric creation based on pores that work like the human skin, allowing moisture and sweat to be evicted to the surface layers of the fabric.
eVent avoids using a PU membrane
Whereas GORE-TEX® uses a polyurethane layer in their fabrics to absorb sweat in a two layer process, eVent application is made to the inner layers of the garment, taking away the need for a PU layer. eVent refer to this as Direct Venting Technology.
eVent is quicker to dry than GORE-TEX® – but can be colder on the hills
The abilities of the PU layer are debated, and eVent suggest it enhances the performance and speed of the drying process in a garment. However, the layer can also add insulation, meaning that although an eVent product may be supremely breathable, t may not be as warming in extreme cold temperatures. For this reason many people prefer eVent for extreme activities where a lot of sweat and body heat will be produced, yet favour GORE-TEX® for colder mountain walks.
eVent is arguably more breathable than GORE-TEX® due to larger pores
By removing the PU layer, which allows oil and grease to be removed, eVent is more breathable than a GORE-TEX® alternative.
eVent may need more care than a GORE-TEX® alternative
Because the PU layer protects the PTFE layer from oil and grease, eVents lack of the PU or Teflon layer increases the need for an eVent garment to be washed and re-proofed more often than a GORE-TEX® alternative.
eVent tends to be lighter- but more prone to abrasion
This can be a huge positive if you are seeking a membrane that can release sweat during activity when every gram counts. However, the thinness of the fabric without the internal PU layer can make eVent more at risk of abrasion and tears.
Reproofing regularly ensures that your eVent garment is in the best condition it can be.
Because an eVent garment contains a DWR layer, applied at the manufacturing stage, this will eventually need to be reproofed at home to prevent moisture penetrating the layers of the fabric.
Because of the highly breathable benefits of eVent this is even more important than with other membranes, as it will keep your eVent garment performing at it's best.
Ensure that you use a special treatment to do this.
At GO Outdoors we recommend both Grangers or Nikwax to be used to reproof your DWR, used little and often.
Harsh detergents should never be used as these will break down the coating of your DWR and could eventually lead to water logging.
eVent is tested in the same manner as any other waterproof on the market, either in RETs or Moisture Vapour Transmission rates.
However, because the products vary, with GORE-TEX® having a variety of fabrics, such as 2 and 3 layer GORE-TEX® , as well as GORE-TEX® Pro Shell, the testing levels between the two membranes of eVent and GORE-TEX® leave something to be desired.
GORE-TEX® and eVent are both designed to fit the same purpose
, to be breathable and waterproof.
They also both
use pore based fabric membranes to achieve this.
The Key Points:
- The simple differences in the make of each garment means that some outdoors users feel that eVent is the more breathable alternative, whereas GORE-TEX® is warmer.
- Because of it's high breathability levels, eVent is ideal for very active users or warmer conditions.
- eVent jackets need to be kept clean to maintain their waterproof properties, due to the construction of the membrane.
However both fabrics, as they aim to be 100% waterproof will have some compromise on their breathability levels, so you should choose on your budget and your activity levels, whilst still expecting both membranes to offer a great deal or breathability and waterproofing- but still bearing in mind that they won't work like magic, keeping you perfectly dry, or perfectly sweat free.