If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent hours of your life lacing up your boots.
By now, you know there’s an easier way to get your boots on and off: boot zips.
These nifty boot accessories make it so you can quickly throw your boots on, zip ‘em up, and get on with your day.
I’m going to share what the best boot zips are if you’re looking to get some, plus I’ll show you how to install them properly on your boots so you get it right the first time.
How to Use Lace In Boot Zips
Step 1: Get Your Boot Zips
I got a pair of Soletec Boot Zips and I chose them for two reasons: I like that you have the option to go with 6, 7, 8, or 9 eyelets.
It helps to know what boots you’re going to install your boot zips on because if you get the wrong number of eyelets, the boot zips will fit awkwardly and will be less effective.
Make sure the boot zips you’re getting use YKK zippers—-most do, but this isn’t an area you want to cut corners on. YKK zippers are the best, and they’ll stay zipped.
Do not get boot zips with a plastic zipper—the amount of force you’ll be regularly applying to the front of your boot is too great for plastic. A plastic zipper will just break, so make sure you get metal.
I also like my boot zips to be leather as that’s going to be much stronger and more durable than nylon webbing.
Note that you can’t use boot zips on a boot with speed hooks (unless the speed hooks are in addition to the number of eyelets you have on your boots). For instance, if you have six eyelets and three speed hooks on your boots, then a six-eyelet boot zip would work, but a nine-eyelet boot zip wouldn’t.
Step 2: Untie Your Boot Laces
If you bought new boot laces to tie in your boot zips, grab those. Otherwise, you can use the laces that came with your boots (assuming they’re not fraying or busted.
There’ll still be some pressure applied to these laces, so it’s better to use sturdy laces in this situation, even though you won’t be tying them again.
Step 3: Attach the Boot Zip Through the Bottom Eyelet
Use your lace and run it through the bottom eyelet of your boot zip. It should be evenly spaced so that the boot zip sits right in the middle. One side of the lace shouldn’t be longer than the other.
Now put your boot zip in place and thread each lace into the bottom eyelet of the boot, moving from the outside inward.
Pull the laces tight and adjust your boot zip so that it’s laying against the tongue of the boot.
Step 4: Corkscrew Your Laces Up Through All Eyelets
This is easiest if you lace your boot zip in one side at a time. Now that you have the bottom eyelet in, take your boot lace from under the boot zip, thread it into the second zip-eyelet, and into the second eyelet of the boot.
Again, you’ll be threading your lace from the bottom of your zip over the top of your boot eyelet.
Repeat this for each side until you’ve laced up the entire boot zip. You’re almost done now—you just need to finish tying the knot and you’re ready to go.
Step 5: Tie Off The Lace
Tie off a single overhand knot at the end of your laces. If you have extra lace dangling, tuck it under the zipper.
When your boots are fully zipped up, you won’t see the extra dangling lace, nor will it affect how your boots fit or feel.
Zip It Up
It’s really that easy.
There are several ways to lace in boot zippers, but the method I described above is the easiest way in my opinion.
It’s important to note that it does require a fairly long lace. If you don’t have a long enough boot lace, you can also lace in a boot zip with two separate laces per boot.
You’d follow almost the same method, but you’d use an entire lace just for one side (and the second lace for the opposite side).
Overall, while boot zips are less secure than just regularly lacing your boots, the amount of time and effort you save from bending over and lacing up your boots is pretty great.
Why would you want to add lace in boot zippers?
Lace in boot zippers make it easier to get your boots on and off. Lots of firemen and paramedics use boot zippers on their boots on the chance that they’ll need to act quickly and spend as little time as possible gearing up.