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Product Review: KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots

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Keen Utility

waterproof work boot

KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots. Credit: Goldenrod Photography

“These will be my new ‘go to’ boots for work.” – Robert S., KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots purchaser

This year, KEEN celebrated its 30th anniversary of providing construction workers around the world—much like you—“go to” boots for their jobsites. Although their opinions of which characteristics separate some boots from others, leading them to be considered “go to”, some commonalities tend to be shared among all workers.

First, comfort is an absolute necessity. Some workers would argue that boots’ comfortability is their most significant quality. Without comfort, workers simply won’t wear them, as a lack of foot comfort may negatively impact their job performances. Second, protection from the elements is key, too. Your feet must be protected not only from Mother Nature (rain, snow, high heat, you name it), but also from the various hazards you’ll likely encounter on your jobsites.

Third, durability is critical as well. Whenever you buy a pair of work boots, along with any other type of workwear, for that matter, you should strive to purchase the most durable items possible. In doing so, you’ll have long-term comfort and protection, while also receiving the “most bang for your buck”, so to speak.

Following in suit with KEEN’s decades-long tradition of creating high-quality footwear—which ensures users’ feet remain comfortable and protected from the elements for potentially years on end—its KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots offer each of these benefits as well, leading them to be “go to” boots for many customers like Robert S.

To determine what else stands out about them, I received a pair in the mail directly from KEEN. Upon opening the box, trying them on and wearing them while working, I noticed a variety of benefits, including the following.

And, as a result, I, along with my fellow IRONPROS team members, recommend them to you, as we believe they could very well become “go to” work boots for you, too.

work boot

KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots. Credit: Goldenrod Photography

Breathable

Depending on which region of your country that you live and work in, breathability may or may not be vital. However, regardless of where you live, when you’re working during your city’s or town’s peak summer months, you’ll appreciate having the most breathable boots possible. And KEEN Utility Fort Wayne Waterproof Boots provide exactly that, as they have highly breathable membranes, known as KEEN.DRY, and very breathable mesh liners.

Consequently, your feet will remain cool as the temperatures continue to rise throughout the summer months. In turn, you’ll be able to focus more on the task at hand, rather than worrying about how hot and uncomfortable your feet are.

Comfortable

Aside from their breathability, these boots are lightweight, too. As a result, I was able to move around freely in them, as I walked across my one-acre property, while conducting various job tasks as I wore them, from raking to shoveling. I wouldn’t necessarily say they felt as if I wasn’t wearing any footwear whatsoever (a virtually impossible feat for work boots). But they definitely felt lighter than most of the other boots I’ve worn.

The primary reason? According to KEEN, their carbon-fiber toes aren’t only non-metallic, but they’re up to 15% lighter than boots that have steel toes. At first glance, this statistic may not overly stand out to construction workers, but, believe me, that difference in weight is quite noticeable, especially if you’re wearing them for a few hours at a time without hardly any pauses.

Due to the boots’ combination of breathability and lightness, they’re very comfortable, regardless of where you need to wear them, which types of tasks you have to conduct while wearing them or how long you need to wear them for.

Durable and Sustainable

Developed for longevity, these work boots offer a variety of features that will help you retain them for several months, if not years, to come. First, each of their carbon-fiber toes have KEEN.PROTECT abrasion, ensuring they’ll be protected from whatever may rub against them, strike them or scratch them while you’re working. In addition to their toes, the boots’ outsoles provide protection from the elements too, as a result of their resistance to various substances, which I’ll discuss later on in the Product Review.

Furthermore, like many other products offered by the manufacturer, KEEN Utility Waterproof Boots’ numerous components are bonded to one another through very high temperatures, a process that KEEN describes as “KEEN.FUSION construction”. As a result of this development process, toxic glues and solvents aren’t ever necessary, as is the case with many other boots, particularly when their soles’ components are joined together.

Therefore, these boots hold up quite well, regardless of what they sustain during your everyday usage. Additionally, they’ll help you reduce your carbon footprints, as they’re more environmentally friendly than many other work boots on the market.

work boots

KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots. Credit: Goldenrod Photography

Effortless to Clean

Okay. Let’s face it. No work wear is entirely effortless to clean, as every item will require some type of effort on your part. But these boots are about as close to effortlessness as possible, with regards to cleaning.

All you need is a bristle brush (the softer, the better) and a hand towel of some sort. Upon acquiring those items, use them to brush the boots’ leather as gently as you can. In doing so, you’ll remove any debris or dirt that’s on their exteriors without damaging them at all. If you notice some stains that a brush and towel can’t remove, consider purchasing a leather cleaner, too. Once you do, utilize it until the stains are either completely or nearly gone.

Great Looking

Of course, at the end of the day, nothing is more important than boots’ comfort, protection capabilities and durability, as discussed above. But the significance of boots’ appearance must not be overlooked either.

After all, the overall look of your workwear can directly impact your productivity. Generally, the better you look, the more confident you are. And the more confident you are, the more likely you’ll perform to the best of your abilities.

Simply put, these boots look great—from their leather, to their laces, to their soles. As is often the case with KEEN’s products, their outside appearances match the high quality of their interiors.

Lightweight Midsoles, Cushioned Footbeds

In addition to their lightweight carbon-fiber toes, the boots have light midsoles, which are comprised of polyurethane and infused with air. At the same time, they also feature highly cushioned footbeds that are comprised of polyurethane, too. Whenever necessary, they can be removed as well, perhaps if you need a bit more space in your boots from time to time.

Due to their lightweight midsoles and cushioned footbeds, the boots offer even further comfort, providing you two more reasons to wear them on a long-term basis.

Protection from the Elements

Designed to meet ASTM F3445-21 and F2413-18 M I/75 C/75 EH standards, with regards to their safety offerings, the boots are also known for their resistance to various substances. For example, they meet ASTM SATRA TM31 material abrasion testing standards. And their midsoles and outsoles meet ASTM D471-06 903# oil and isooctane chemical resistance standards.

In fact, their outsoles aren’t only very durable and lightweight, but completely oil and slip resistant, too. Therefore, your likelihood for falls on the job will diminish considerably, resulting in a decline in injuries and downtime, along with a rise in productivity.

For further protection, the boots are electrical hazard and Electric Shock Resistant as well. In turn, they’re protected from the harmful effects of accidental contacts with live electrical circuits—an all-too-common danger on construction sites.

construction work boots

KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots. Credit: Goldenrod Photography

Spacious

For further comfort, these boots provide quite a bit of room around their toe boxes too, typically ensuring proper fits, regardless of how wide your feet may be. In fact, if necessary, the construction boots are available in two widths: regular and wide. As a result, you’ll never have to worry about finding a size that’s the most suitable for you.

And, more than likely, you’ll have a pair of boots that won’t slide as you wear them to conduct various job tasks and move around on your jobsite regularly. Therefore, your potential for injuries, like blisters and bunions, will decline.

Variety, Concerning Size

Although the boots are only available in two color combinations—Dark Earth/Gum (the color combination I received in the mail) and Tortoise Shell/Gum—they provide considerable variety in another way: their sizes.

Offered in 14 sizes, ranging from 7 to 15, these boots will fit nearly everyone’s feet. Best of all? They’re available in half sizes too, starting with 7.5, all the way up to 11.5.

Waterproof

There’s hardly anything worse than wet socks and footwear on the job. Not only are they distracting, but they’re also quite uncomfortable, to the point in which they simply can’t be ignored, no matter how hard you may try. Thankfully, KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots feature full-grain waterproof leather, which helps ensure they remain protected from the detrimental impacts of chemicals like ammonium hydroxide, oleic acid, sodium chloride and urea. This level of protection is critical, as you may encounter these chemicals on your jobsite without even realizing it.

Additionally, the boots utilize a highly robust water repellant, which doesn’t have any perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), thereby ensuring they maintain their dryness in an environmentally friendly and healthy manner. For further sustainability, the boots are also certified by the Leather Working Group (LWG), which is dedicated to confirming whether or not manufacturers utilize environmentally responsible leather.

work boots

KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots. Credit: Goldenrod Photography

Should You Purchase KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots?

If you’re seeking comfortable and durable boots that will protect you from man-made hazards, as well as elements associated with Mother Nature, look no further! You’ve found a pair of boots that will provide you each of these key characteristics, among many others! 

First off, they’re highly breathable, so you can wear them during the peak of summer without worrying about whether or not your feet will be too warm, especially as you work long shifts in 80 degree-plus weather. And, as you wear them day in and day out, you won’t have to be concerned about maintaining them either, as they’re easy to clean, thus enabling you to keep them on a long-term basis, just as KEEN intended.

They’re lightweight and cushioned as well, leading to even more comfort as you wear them for several hours at a time. And, to ensure further durability, they’re also waterproof. Consequently, you’ll be able to wear them during snowstorms and torrential downpours.

Oil and slip resistant, the boots will also minimize your likelihood for falls, as well as any injuries associated with them. Of equal importance, they’re protected from the effects of accidental contacts with live electrical circuits too, resulting in even more on-the-job protection.

Spacious around their toe boxes, the boots are available in wide widths, along with sizes as large as 14, thus providing a wide array of construction workers an opportunity to enjoy their numerous benefits firsthand. And, as they do, they’ll be able to decrease their carbon footprints as well, as the boots are created in a sustainable manner—without using any toxic glues or solvents.

Finally, the boots simply look great. As you know, the better you look, the more confident you tend to be, resulting in a positive impact on your overall job performance and, in turn, your career as a construction worker.

Considering all of this, is there any wonder why one reviewer, while reflecting on KEEN Utility Fort Wayne 6-in. Waterproof Boots, said they had “happy feet”? Now is the time for you to have “happy feet”, too!

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