How Often Should You Replace Work Shoes?

You should replace your work shoes every 6 to 12 months, but it also depends upon the condition of your shoes. There is no hard and fast rule about replacing your work shoes. For most workers, the work shoes are usually lost between 12 to 24 months. But if you buy high-quality branded shoes and take good care of them, they can last decades. Make sure your shoes are more than comfortable, as uncomfortable shoes can pose a real risk to your health.

How Often Should You Replace Work Shoes

You have to make sure that your warehouse work shoes are protecting you from the real hazards of your workplace. Every shoe pair has its own benefits as the steel shoe protects your feet from falling objects, and the rubber shoes provide you the much-needed stability and slip resistance. Whichever pair of work shoes you have, you need to replace them with the new one when it’s not fulfilling your demands. Here we will list a couple of things that help you to know if you need to spend hundreds of dollars on a new pair of work shoes or if you can keep using the old ones.

Notice the Following Signs in Your Work Shoes

1- Check outsoles

check outsoles

Your work shoe’s outsole should be in good shape. Check if they are worn down? The lug patterns should still be there. The outsole should not be separated from the upper. Make sure there are no holes in your outsole. If the outsoles of your work shoes are not in good condition, you need to replace work shoes or even buy a new outsole and ask the cobbler to replace the old outsole with the new one. A perfect outsole provides slip resistance and prevents you from serious injuries in the workplace. If you think your shoe issues are resolvable, you can send them to the shoe repair shop to save hundreds of dollars.

2- Check for holes in your work shoes

check holes in work shoes

If you found any holes in the uppers or the outsoles of your shoes, you need to replace your shoe ASAP. Wearing shoes with holes not only compromises your safety, but it’s also very unappealing. You have to ensure the proper footwear at your workplace to prevent severe injuries.

3- Check comfort level

Many workers don’t notice the comfort feature of their work shoes, but the truth is that many work shoes lose their comfort feature after their recommended period of use. After some time, they lose their cushioned footbeds, and their midsoles are crooked. Even many ergonomic designs can be totally deformed, which can cause serious long-term issues for the workers, especially if the shoes don’t have shock-absorbing features.

4- Check if they are still waterproof or not

The waterproofing features of the shoes keep your foot dry and warm at your workplace. Many people purchase waterproof and insulated shoes especially to prevent their feet from getting wet. So, if you notice that your shoes have lost their waterproofing and insulation feature, you need to replace your work shoes.

5- Check if they are falling apart

This is the biggest reason that you should change your shoes. If your shoes are literally falling apart, you need to change shoes. The shoes with steel toes are usually lost in a year or two, but this is not the case if you are working in an industry that uses hammers or pneumatic tools.

6- Check if they smell bad

You may have noticed the bad smell of your shoes, especially if your shoes are too old such as 7-8 years old. You don’t need to wait till the tearing and wearing of your shoes as shoe smell is an important sign of changing your shoes with the new one. Nobody loves to sit near you if your shoes smell bad. That’s why it is important to stop wearing the smelly shoes and get new ones, as smelly shoes can damage your personality within minutes.

7- Check if your shoes are damaged due to an impact on work

Sometimes working in a busy and hazardous environment leave some damage to the shoes. These shoes not only look unprofessional but are also uncomfortable for the workers. They are highly risky for their feet, which can also be responsible for serious injuries in the worst cases. If you really want maximum protection at work, make sure to replace them with new shoes.

8- Notice if your shoes have increased in slips and falls

If you are slipping and falling more on your work, you need to change your shoes. Usually, it occurs due to the worn outsole of your old shoes. Purchase the new slip-resistant shoes to avoid future accidents.

9- Check if they have too much flexibility

The right amount of flexibility in the shoes is essential to provide you maximum comfort while wearing them. Enough flexibility provides you with better control of your feet. But too much flexibility doesn’t give you enough feet support. The extra flexible shoes are not doing much to absorb the shock. So make sure to add the right flexibility to your shoes during the break-in process.

How to Make My Shoes Last Longer?

make work shoes last longer

Most work shoes last six months or a year. But you can increase their lifespan. The below tips help you to get the most out of your investment.

  • You can buy two pairs at a time and use them alternatively. The alternative use of a few pairs of high-quality shoes doesn’t put too much pressure on the shoes. That’s how they get plenty of time to rest and dry out. Each pair experience less damage over time, which can double their lifespan.
  • Many work shoes are stylish, and some people also wear them outside work as well. You have to avoid this if you want their longer lifespan. The outside wearing can lead them to quicker and more damage. Your shoes are already bearing the burden of your work damage, so don’t wear them for your other usual activities.
  • Make sure to clean your shoes regularly to keep them in good condition for longer. You have to wash them if they are covered with mud at the end of the workday. These few minutes of cleaning can save you hundreds of dollars.
  • Maintenance of anything is good to keep it in good condition for longer. But make sure to use safe maintenance techniques and never submerge the leather shoes. Try to use the cold water to clean the shoes without putting them in a drying machine. The unnecessary stress can damage your shoes.
  • You can extend the lifespan of your work shoes by replacing their old worn soles. It’s the first part of any shoe that starts deteriorating. The worn soles couldn’t provide you with enough protection; as a result, your performance will also suffer.
  • The waterproofing and water-resisting features of the work shoes help to keep your feet dry and comfortable, and blister-free. But you have to apply the waterproofing treatment regularly while cleaning to retain the water resistance. You can use the conditioner once a month for leather work shoes.
  • Don’t just kick them off without untying the laces when you want to remove shoes. Untie the laces first, and then remove the shoes with your hand.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many miles should work shoes last?

Under normal conditions, the work shoes usually last from 300 to 500 miles. It means you can easily wear them for approximately six months with the proper care and attention they deserve. You are likely to get fewer miles from them if you are kicking or pulling them off without untying the laces.

Should you replace your work shoes with normal shoes?

No, you can’t replace your work shoes with any usual shoes as they will last shorter and provide you less protection. High-quality work shoes are necessary to ensure safety and stability at your workplace. Good work shoes not only fulfill the demands of your workplace, but they also prevent you from major back problems. These problems can cost you more than a decent pair of work shoes. You have to understand that cheap shoes are a bad investment. Cheap shoes go through faster than you think.

The Bottom Line

How often you should change your work shoes depends upon various factors. Usually, they last for about six months and can last even longer if taken with good care. High-quality shoes are the foundation of the work environment, which prevents you from many risks. It’s possible to extend the lifespan of work shoes, but you have to replace them sooner or later.


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