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Paramo Cascada failure

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 mr cooker 04 Oct 2020

I bought a Paramo Cascada Jacket in March. Second time I wore it. It leaked. Reproofed beading last about an half an hour, reproof, wash. Nothing works. Contacted retailer. Referred me to Paramo, returned the jacket. After 3 weeks the jacket was returned &  reproofed again. Had it two days . wore it in light rain, beading gone in 30 minutes. leaking by the end of my hours walk . 

I am requesting a refund under not fit for purpose guidelines 

1
 Dave the Rave 04 Oct 2020
In reply to mr cooker:

Hope you get your refund. Are they actually marketed as waterproof though? Certainly doesn’t sound fit for purpose.

In reply to Dave the Rave:

Paramo kit isn't waterproof and isn't marketed as being waterproof.  The way it works is that it wicks water out as fast as it gets in, though in a true deluge it doesn't and can get you wet.

 Wheelsy 05 Oct 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

Odd then that on Paramo's own website the Cascada is called the 'Paramo Cascada Waterproof Jacket' and uses 'Nikwax Analogy Waterproof fabric'.

 SouthernSteve 05 Oct 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

The headline title on the Paramo site states waterproof, reading down the page your explanation is given. This might confuse. What is unclear from the OP is whether he actually got wet.

In reply to Neil Williams:

> Paramo kit isn't waterproof and isn't marketed as being waterproof.  The way it works is that it wicks water out as fast as it gets in, though in a true deluge it doesn't and can get you wet.

Leaking after an hour in light rain, as described by the OP, isn't a deluge. I have a Cascada that must be 20 years old, and it still performs well. I have a newer Velez thats rubbish in the wet, but thats leaky zips not the fabric.

When it works Paramo is great in cold wet weather, when it doesn't it's horrible. I've gone back to hardshells for wet weather gear, as the newer stuff is, IMHO, not as good as the older stuff, and is overpriced for what it is.

In reply to Wheelsy:

> Odd then that on Paramo's own website the Cascada is called the 'Paramo Cascada Waterproof Jacket' and uses 'Nikwax Analogy Waterproof fabric'.

That's new, then, as they never used to.  That's rather naughty as it isn't true.

 DaveHK 05 Oct 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

> That's new, then, as they never used to.  That's rather naughty as it isn't true.

They've sold is as waterproof for 12 years at least. I remember this because I challenged them on it when a pair of their trousers I had leaked in 2008.

In reply to mr cooker:

Unfortunately Paramo seems to be the best waterproof or the absolute pits. May even be specific to the individual jacket. My Velez smock was dire. Returned to Paramo who said I'd overproofed it! After they had re-proofed it I used it in light rain on a canal towpath and I got so wet I had to change when I got back to the car. Always took ages to dry as well.

I now use it to rock climb as it is relatively tough, can be vented out well and I don't care what happens to it.

Lots of others in my club use it and love it.

Hope you manage to get your money back.

In reply to Prof. Outdoors:

> Unfortunately Paramo seems to be the best waterproof or the absolute pits.

^ This.

On the marketing front my 20 year old Cascada, which keeps water out is badged "Nikwax Biological Analogy". My Velez, which leaks, is badged "Nikwax Analogy Waterproof".

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 hbeevers 06 Oct 2020
In reply to mr cooker:

Sorry it leaked, not my experience in light rain though so perhaps more going on or some fault.

The beading won't last like gore Tex because it's not supposed to, the outer is water resistant while the inner pump keeps you dry to a point. After that it's about being "comfortable" rather than totally dry in prolonged rain. 

Paramo is pretty different to waterproof gore Tex, it takes a little of buffalo system mentality where you might get wet eventually but should remain comfortable. 

 Root1 06 Oct 2020
In reply to Neil Williams:

> Paramo kit isn't waterproof and isn't marketed as being waterproof.  The way it works is that it wicks water out as fast as it gets in, though in a true deluge it doesn't and can get you wet.

Its odd this people getting wet. Several years ago I did a Glencoe Munro in a deluge. A friend who lives in the Coe said it was the wettest day she'd known in 20 yrs. I got back still dry. This has ben my experience with Paramo generally. Although they have changed the manufacturing process in recent  years to be more eco friendly. 

 L.A. 06 Oct 2020
In reply to Root1: Ah the annual Paramo leaking like a sieve thread

 I have in the past few years bought two Paramo Velez Smocks because I liked the idea and style.

Both jackets had exactly the same result, they were ok until the first time it rained. With one of the jackets Ive never gotten so wet through on the hill in 40 years. The other jacket just got very very soggy inside. They were as good at keeping me dry as a wet tissue. Truly awful at what they claimed they were good at.  I took them back to Paramo for refunds. (which to their credit they did without quibble)  

I now see them as an expensive softshell that needs a rain jacket over them to keep them dry

Post edited at 10:31
In reply to L.A.:

Sad to hear this as exactly the same as my Velez. I kept mine to climb in. Like all kit there will be rogue garments but the Paramo failures seem more catastrophic than others. My mate was dry in his so we swapped over. He got wet in mine, I was dry in his. Hey ho.

 Kalna_kaza 06 Oct 2020
In reply to Prof. Outdoors:

I can't get my head around the massive difference between items that should be notionally the same. The volume of complaints I hear of is so much higher than any other brand it's hard to believe they still sell any at all. You get a fair few issues with product longevity for lightweight jackets but rarely brand new items totally failing on first use.

Is it a fundamental manufacturing defect that ruins the whole jacket or is it a quality control issue involving a few stitches here and there? 

Given Paramo are only ever likely to sell to hardend outdoors enthusiasts I fail to see how they can let such variable product quantity persist in the long term.

In reply to Kalna_kaza:

In the case of the Velez I reckon the design is flawed. Theres an exposed, non water resistant zip running from neck to sternum, and two similarly exposed zips up each side.

There's obviously some issue with the newer fabrics, as the Cascada has storm flaps over the zips, which work on my old jacket. 

I'm reasonably happy with my old paramo kit, bearing in mind the limitations, but I wouldn't trust the new stuff.

In reply to Ridge:

I knew when I bought the Velez that the side zips might be prone.I was actually getting wet between the shoulder blades and in the chest area. Straight through the fabric on the back and I was not wearing a rucsac so not pressure induced.

Whether it is a change of fabric or manufacturing process it has put me off Paramo. Strangely I have never heard a complaint about Cioch Outdoor who use the Nikwas Analogy material. This could  simply be due to the lower volume of sales relative to Paramo.

There are loads of people who will testify for Paramo but not me. Most faults in membrane fabrics can be put down to holes/abrasion/contamination. It would be really good if specific reasons could be identifies in Paramo.

 DaveHK 06 Oct 2020
In reply to Kalna_kaza:

> Is it a fundamental manufacturing defect that ruins the whole jacket or is it a quality control issue involving a few stitches here and there? 

I think it is either serious QC issues, user expectations or a combination of both.

 L.A. 06 Oct 2020
In reply to DaveHK: It certainly seemed that my 'user expectations' of it keeping me dry in either heavy, or as it was with the second jacket, quite light rain were well off the mark.

When I returned the jackets to them there was no real surprise shown by the Paramo staff, it seemed to be a not infrequent occurrence. There are far too many tales of the more recent Paramo garments failing badly for it to be an occasional one off.  Just Google 'Paramo jacket leaking' for a start

Post edited at 17:02
In reply to DaveHK:

> > Is it a fundamental manufacturing defect that ruins the whole jacket or is it a quality control issue involving a few stitches here and there? 

> I think it is either serious QC issues, user expectations or a combination of both.

I'm struggling to think what the QC issues could be. It's 2 layers of fabric, no membrane or taped seams, and DWR coating added by soaking it in a bucket of gunk.

Maybe the outers have been made so light that even with the DWR they don't stop water ingress, or 'ecofriendly' nikwax just washes off?

 DaveHK 07 Oct 2020
In reply to Ridge:

> I'm struggling to think what the QC issues could be. It's 2 layers of fabric, no membrane or taped seams, and DWR coating added by soaking it in a bucket of gunk.

I actually think my second suggestion is the more likely of the two. I think the differing opinions of its waterproofness are down to people using it in different ways and having different expectations of what a 'waterproof' jacket should do.

1
 artif 07 Oct 2020
In reply to DaveHK:

It doesn't seem to be the expectations or why would there be such a the difference in the examples given above ie new vs old etc. BTW I have an old paramo jacket which has never stopped the rain, its just used as  mid layer for walking the dog now, due to its excessive weight and poor fit

In reply to DaveHK:

If I understandf you correctly I think you are of trying to say none of the above failures were out on the same day, same venue with the same conditions, same expectations.

My experience were of repetitive failures. Even after Paramo had cleaned and re-proofed it I went out in light rain in calm conditions along a canal towpath. My expectations for that was not to have to change when I got back to the car.

I am not sure what causes that failure but that particular garment was not fit for purpose. Seems that some work, some don't. Going back to the original post I do hope that he gets satisfaction through the retailer.

 Root1 07 Oct 2020
In reply to Ridge:

They changed the manufacturing process a few years back so they were using less harmful chemicals. It seems this change is the issue.

 Tringa 07 Oct 2020
In reply to Kalna_kaza:

Agree. I was surprised when I started to hear of people who had problems with Paramo gear. I thought they must be doing something wrong, though I couldn't work out what.

There are now so many reported problems(I know it is only small number but as you say their gear generally is not bought by joe public so overall Paramo will not have huge sales, and therefore even a few reports is probably significant) there appears to be an issue.

I have a Paramo jacket that is at least 15 years old and it is still going strong. Water doesn't bead up on it and it wets out easily but nothing gets through to the inside, but is seems more recent gear might have a problem.

Dave

In reply to Tringa:

> I have a Paramo jacket that is at least 15 years old and it is still going strong. Water doesn't bead up on it and it wets out easily but nothing gets through to the inside, but is seems more recent gear might have a problem.

In terms of beading, how do you reproof it? I've found:

1  Using a bucket to mix the proofer with water, dunking the jacket and giving it a good stir and prodding with a plank of wood, (you don't want it on your hands).

2. Then fully submerging the jacket in the proofer mix for a good half hour (a brick helps).

3. A very quick rinse (the proofer is carried in water, why would you rinse it out again?) Followed by hanging on the line to drip dry.

4. Tumble dry on hot setting.

Seems to give much better results than using a washing machine.

Post edited at 10:17
 hbeevers 07 Oct 2020
In reply to Ridge:

I've only ever used a washing machine, 20mins, low spin and amount of tech wash then TX direct as instructed. Got a 15 year old Velez, Cascada II trousers and nearly 10 year old Alta II which have all performed fine from day 1. I re-proof 2-3 times a year.

For people's issues, other than a faulty jacket,  all I can think is they wear it in warm weather and sweat buckets or they think the outer wetting out is the same as them getting wet... This is only because I've never had an issue with mine though!

 artif 07 Oct 2020
In reply to hbeevers:

> For people's issues, other than a faulty jacket,  all I can think is they wear it in warm weather and sweat buckets or they think the outer wetting out is the same as them getting wet... This is only because I've never had an issue with mine though!

Mine is an older one 10+ years, it wasn't waterproof or even resistant from the start. Certainly not sweat it would just let water through from the top down even when just walking the dog, I don't sweat much in cool weather when walking slowly. Tried reproofing it etc etc but just accepted it as a another dumb sucker purchase.  I wasn't too bothered as I got it in a sale and couldn't be bothered to take it back.

 Tringa 08 Oct 2020
In reply to Ridge:

Thanks.

Dave


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