Water Repellency Test of Fabric by Spray Tester

Last Updated on 12/04/2021

Name of the Experiment:
Determination of water repellency of fabric by Spray tester.

Tendency of any material to resist wetting is called its water repellency. Water repellency of a fabric depends on several factors including nature of the fibers, yarn structure, fabric porosity, finish applied and water impact force. In this test water is sprayed on the stretched fabric sample from 150 ±2 mm height under controlled conditions. A wetted pattern is produced whose size is dependent on the water repellency of the specimen. The wetted sample is compared by the standard spray ratings to evaluate the water repellency of it. The merit of a fabric intended for rainwear, wagon covers or tents is judged, amongst other properties, by its ability to keep water out; conversely, when intended for hose pipes or canvas buckets, to keep water in. In another direction, some fabrics must exhibit the ability to absorb water rapidly, toweling being an obvious example. So there is a relation between water and textile materials which is very necessary for their end use.

Water repellency test of fabric
Fig: Water repellency test of fabric


  • To measure water repellency of a given fabric.

Water repellent is a state characterized by the non-spreading of water globules on a textile material. Water repellency is a step up from water resistance, which means water cannot easily penetrate the material. This term is not normally applied to a water-repellent finish impervious to air. This is generally referred to as water proof. It is generally done by treated fabric with fat, wax, rubber etc. This addition may be in form of physical film or coating or physical combination. The feature of a waterproof fabric is the low degree of air permeability. Spray tester is such an instrument which measures the water repellency of a fabric. In this test a small amount of shower is produced by pouring water through a spray nozzle. The water falls on to the specimen which is mounted over a 6 in. diameter embroidery hoop and fixed at an angle of 45 degrees. To carry out the test, 250 cm3 of water at 70oF are poured steadily into the funnel. The American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists recommend the use of a chart of photographs against which the actual fabric appearance is compared.

The ratings are as follows:

Rating        Description

  • 100         No sticking or wetting of the upper surface.
  • 90           Slight random sticking or wetting of the upper surface.
  • 80           Wetting of upper surface at spray points.
  • 70           Partial wetting of whole of upper surface.
  • 50           Complete wetting of whole of upper surface.
  • 0             Complete wetting of whole of upper and lower surfaces.


  1. Spray tester
  2. Water
  3. Fabric

100% cotton, polyester, umbrella, parachute cloth.


  • Temperature – 25oC and relative humidity – 67%
  • Standard atmosphere: temperature – 20oC and relative humidity – 65%.

Machine specification:  

  • Name: Spray tester
  • Brand: TESTEX, China.
  • Template: 50 cm circumference.
Spray tester
Fig: Spray tester

Working principle of water repellency test: 

  1. The sample fabric is mounted on the embroidery hoop and fixed on the instrument at 45o.
  2. Now the beaker is filled with 250 cc water and poured on the funnel.
  3. The water is showered through spray nozzle on the fabric.
  4. After spraying has finished the sample holder is removed and the surplus water removed by tapping the frame 6 times against a solid object, with the face of the sample facing the solid object.
  5. The water repellency is assessed from the spray rating chart.
  6. 5 tests should be made and the nearest rating assigned to each, since no interpolation is allowed, i.e. a rating for a specimen cannot be 75.
  7. The mean of the 5 ratings is taken as the result.

Experimental Data:

S/nType of fabricSpray rating
1100% cotton0

Table: Ratings found for different fabrics.


  1. Water repellency of a 100% cotton fabric is 0.
  2. Water repellency of a polyester fabric is 0.
  3. Water repellency of a umbrella fabric is 70.
  4. Water repellency of a parachute fabric is 100.

According to the type of fabric water repellency varies from 0-100. From the experiment we can understand this. It is mainly selected depending on the end use of fabrics.

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