How to clean beekeeping gloves How to get rid of bees burrowing in wood

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Written By Joanna Bailey

Joanna Bailey is a beekeeping consultant based in Florida, dedicated to promoting sustainable beekeeping practices and educating others on the importance of bees in our ecosystem. With years of experience in the field, she is a trusted advisor to beekeepers of all levels.

Are you looking for a step-by-step guide on how to clean beekeeping gloves? Well, look no further! In this article, we will guide you through the process of cleaning beekeeping gloves, from start to finish. We will outline the necessary tools and supplies, provide tips on how to clean them correctly, and give you tips on how to keep your gloves in peak condition. So go ahead, and guide yourself on how to clean beekeeping gloves correctly!

Understand the Three Most Common Kinds of Beekeeping Gloves

There could be a variety of beekeeping gloves in the market but there are three most common kinds of beekeeping gloves right now as follows.

1 – Synthetic Gloves

Synthetic beekeeping gloves are the easiest gloves to clean and are generally made from neoprene, latex, and nitrile. Understanding their material construction is very important for the cleaning of beekeeping gloves.

However, you should note that synthetic latex rubbers are also there. Instead of natural latex, your cheaper latex gloves will be synthetic. So it doesn’t matter. They all look rather good after cleaning. All the construction materials mentioned above can easily be washed or cleaned with warm soap and water.

Several beekeepers keep a pan of warm water near their hives so that they may clean themselves several times as they work. Final cleaning is made easier by this sort of thing. So, go follow this technique if you’re also having a synthetic beekeeping glove!

2 – Leather Gloves

Leather gloves are one of the recommended gloves by beekeepers. These gloves protect the hands from stings and other harmful insects. It is very important that they are clean before use because any residual honey, sugar, or nectar will be difficult to remove even with hot water after a beekeeping session.

Stingers (refers to ‘bees’ here) release a pheromone that alerts other bees of trouble, which is another disadvantage of leather. One sting can induce a whole hive to become enraged. Leather, on the other hand, may actually encourage stings if it protects them. After examining an active hive, your gloves might get quite filthy. Thus, these kinds of gloves are pretty hard to clean as well.

Scraping glue-like propolis and sticky honey could be a stubborn task especially while cleaning leather beekeeping gloves. Because of his toughness, ordinary dirt and debris don’t bother leather.

Here’s an ultimate step-by-step guide if you also own leather beekeeping gloves!

Step 1: Begin by scraping them with a dull knife or spatula.

Step 2: Now, form a mixture of warm water and a mild detergent or a hand soap to wash these gloves within. Begin by soaking them for an ideal span.

Step 3: Then, take cold chlorine water to soak these gloves overnight to get off residual stains or dirt.

Step 4: At last, rinse the gloves thoroughly and let them dry in the sun!

3 – Fabric Gloves

Garden or work gloves made of a variety of materials are usually fabric gloves. There are several possible outcomes, including cotton, polyester, and polyester blends. In comparison to thin synthetics, fabric gloves offer a little more sting protection. However, they are not as hard and tough to clean as leather!

One of the hardest challenges here is to remove the penetrated propolis, wax, and dirt that gets accumulated on the fabric gloves slowly after usage. A single session in the hive might make a brand-new pair of gloves filthy, gluey, and starkly stained.

However, their cleaning method is almost similar to fabric beekeeping gloves. Given below are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Scrape the gloves much enough to loosen the propolis and honey. You can use any tool like a dull knife to remove the crusted wax.

Step 2: Place the fabric gloves overnight in hot water mixed with a mild soap solution. Here, you can use any ready-made pre-wash solutions available in the market as well.

Step 3: Next, wash the gloves in hot water with a fabric-safe bleach mixed with mild detergent. Bleach could be optional here

Some Expert Tips to Keep in Mind Before Cleaning Beekeeping Gloves

There are some very important factors and tips that you need to keep in mind before cleaning your beekeeping gloves.

1 – Pre-treat stains

Before you can wash your beekeeping suit in your washing machine, any and all stains on it must be pre-treated. Using a laundry detergent can help reduce the amount of Propolis stains that remain.

Always keep in mind to use a natural or mild detergent as they contain fewer harmful compounds that could limit the lifespan of your gloves. Wax can be scraped off using very hot water and we suggest you do this outside the main drainage of the kitchen as there are chances of clogging it.

A skilled pre-treater paired with a pre-soak-in will eliminate grass stains and soil and dirt stains. So, make sure you follow this pre-treatment procedure beforehand!

2 – Wash as per the care instructions in the washing machine

If you wish to go through a final washing machine cleaning round, do take care of the appropriate care instructions as mentioned on both the beekeeping gloves and machine! Avoid putting other clothes with your beekeeping gloves to avoid the transfer of traces of bee venom or other stains.

Also, avoid any fragrances in any soap or cleaners. Bleach and fabric softeners are not to be used. Plain white vinegar might be used as a rinse aid if you need one.

3 – Remove propolis the correct way possible!

Remove as much propolis as you can using the scraper. Remove the propolis resin from the scraper using a damp cloth, and if you need it, a small knife will help. Steam the cloth for 20 minutes in hot water. Scrape the cloth again after removing it. The second time, more propolis will be removed.

And, you can use a paste-like consistency mixture created with an all-purpose liquid cleaner and laundry powder. Make it in the ratio 1:3 and apply it to stained propolis. Then, soak the gloves in hot water for about 20 minutes.

Final Words

In this blog, we discussed the importance of keeping beekeeping gloves clean and free of pests. We’ve thoroughly described a step-by-step guide to clean beekeeping gloves as per their material construction! Gloves can be a major headache when it comes to keeping bees healthy and pest-free, so it’s important to take care of them properly. Let us know any of your queries in the comments section below! Thanks!

Related FAQs

1 – Can you machine wash beekeeping gloves?

While it is possible to machine wash beekeeping gloves, it may not be the best idea. Machine washing can cause them to shrink in size and shape, which can lead to issues with fit and comfort. Furthermore, even if they do not shrink, glove suds created by the washing process are known to irritate skin and cause allergic reactions. So rather than risking these potential negative outcomes, it is better for you to hand-wash your gloves when necessary.

2 – How do you take care of goat skin gloves?

When it comes to taking care of goat skin gloves, the most important thing is to keep them clean and free from bacteria. Here also, you need to take very hot water and a mixture of mild soap or detergent to wash them several times a week. If required, you can also apply a topical antibiotic cream, and don’t forget to hang them in sun for drying before storage.

3 – Which brand of beeswax should I buy for my beekeeping glove cleaning needs?

It depends! However, the market consists of different brands of beeswax which can be considered based upon your personal beekeeping needs. Some of the most popular beekeeping gloves are designed to be cleaned with lard or other animal fats, so a brand that uses Beeswax Lubricant would be a good choice.

Other factors you should consider include which type of glove you’re using (hard-shell vs soft-shell), how frequently you’ll need to clean them, and whether or not they need conditioning regularly.

If you decide to purchase Beeswax Lubricant, just apply enough to cover both sides of the glove and work it into the fabric using your hands. Let it sit for 10 minutes before washing it in warm water with soap. Be sure to rinse well after cleaning so no residue remains on your gloves.

4 – How can I clean beekeeping gloves without using chemicals?

Yes, there are a ton of natural remedies and DIY solutions available and we’ve also described a few above to clean gloves without using any chemicals. One option is to use a detergent designed specifically for cleaning beekeeping equipment. Another approach is to soak the gloves in warm water and soap before scrubbing them clean with a stiff brush or sponge. Finally, you can dry the gloves off by placing them on a clothes dryer set at low heat.

5 – Do beekeeping gloves need to be washed after every use?

Usually, beekeeping gloves should be cleaned after every use to prevent the disease’s spread. However, if you are handling hives that have recently been treated with a pesticide or other chemical agent, it may be necessary to wash them more frequently. Always follow and read the clean or wash instructions of the manufacturer when using any pesticides or chemicals.