By Jayden Mark
Working on your knees can be uncomfortable and your work pants take a lot of extra wear and tear around the knee area. Using conventional knee pads can be a solution. They certainly offer a great deal of heavy-duty protection. However, fitted knee pads aren’t always that comfortable and take some time fit and remove. For this reason, all sorts of professionals, from EMS workers to contractors, prefer to use work pants with knee pads.
Tactical pants, which also have knee pads, can work just as well for work. There are a few differences, mostly in the design. We will be reviewing both options.
Pants for Knee Pads
- 1Work Pants
- 2Tactical Pants
Most pants intended for work have removable knee pads. This means that the pants are fitted with knee pad pockets. You buy the knee pads, or inserts, separately. There are quite a few advantages to this. You’re able to replace the pads, without buying new pants. The pockets, into which the pads are inserted, can be cleaned of debris. Work pants, with built-in knee pads are quite rare. There are more options for built-in knee pads when looking at tactical pants.
Work Pants That Can Accommodate Knee Pads
In this category, options are somewhat limited. Many of the work pants with knee pads are the same product sold by different brands. To make your search easier, we’ve shortlisted these to the best value options.
1. Caterpillar Men's Trademark Pant
Possibly the most recognized brand for tough work gear and fashionable outdoor wear, Caterpillar Trademark Pants, seem like a fitting way to kick off this review. Available in a great selection sizes for regular, large, and tall, these pants also come in a wide variety of colors and work designs. You can choose to go quite neutral and discreet, or stand out in a hazardous working environment, with a bunch of different neon and reflective designs.
We’ve all come to trust CAT for ultimate durability, these pants are in line with these expectations. Made from a 60% cotton and 40% polyester blend, with a double layer Oxford knee, hard wearing durability is fantastic. The knee pads insert at the top of the knee pocket, making things really easy. There’s also no zipper to fail on you, the Caterpillar work pants utilize a button closure.
I really like the practicality. The pants fit easily over your boots, thanks to a 20” leg opening, and they have scuff guards. You get all sorts of wonderful multi-purpose tool pockets at the front and back. The front pockets include handy pull-out Oxford tool bags, and there’s a carpenters loop on the thigh. Machine washable convenience is what we want, and this what they have given us.
Easy to use knee inserts, comfortable fit, and wonderfully practical, CAT work pants with knee pads are great in all climates, even rain and snow. Though, in hot conditions, they can become a little uncomfortable. You can trust the brand for tough materials and workmanship. Definitely some of the best pants for work and other demanding activities.
2. Walls Ditchdigger Double-Knee DWR Stretch Duck Work Pant
I reckon these have to be the most comfortable work pants ever. A breathable, flexible material allows you to move freely, without working up a sweat. Wall Ditchdigger can only be commended for this. Durable work gear can often be stiff and heavy, not the case here. Using 98% 11-Oz cotton keeps you wonderfully cool when it’s hot. For extra comfort and stretch, they’ve added 2% spandex.
This makes the Ditchdigger both luxurious and durable. They’ve even hidden a Smooth Move elastic waistband for a relaxed fit.
Using 98% 11-Oz cotton keeps you wonderfully cool when it’s hot. For extra comfort and stretch, they’ve added 2% spandex. This makes the Ditchdigger both luxurious and durable. They’ve even hidden a Smooth Move elastic waistband for a relaxed fit.
To cope with the rigorous hard work, these work pants have double and triple reinforced stitching, with a bag leg hem kickplate. The knee pad pocket is also brilliantly flexible for added comfort and easy to keep clean. The pockets are deep and tough, though they don’t include any cargo-type pockets for extra tool storage, or loops. A nifty little addition, though, is the cell phone pocket, easily accessible on the right. A button enclosure is used for long term durability.
Working all day, indoors or out, can be tough. Comfortable work pants, designed to handle a good deal of punishment, can do a lot to make this easier. Wall Ditchdigger double knee pants make the grade for professional quality and superb comfort.
3. Carhartt Men's Firm Duck Double-Front Work Dungaree Pant B01
These knee pad pants have a fantastic double front design, using 12-ounce, 100% cotton, ring-spun washed duck fabric. Ready to take on the toughest conditions, without compromising on comfort. The knee pad pockets are designed for ease of use and quick cleaning of debris. The pants are machine washable.
A myriad of well-designed utility pockets, in different practical sizes, offer great storage for your tools and equipment. A hammer loop on the left leg is yet another a practical advantage. Extra durability and attention to detail is sublime, evident in the reinforced belt loops. The back pockets are also reinforced, which is really great.
One of the few work pants with knee pads made in the USA, Carhartt may be a cut above the Chinese imports. Though, this always remains a matter of opinion. Regardless, of where they come from, this is a super-tough product and a lot of thought has gone into the design. Practical, comfortable, and tough, these knee pad pants have everything we’re looking for.
4. Caterpillar Men's H2o Defender Pant
Bravo CAT! Now we’re talking about the ultimate work pants with knee pads. They’re expensive but will have the supreme wow factor. Possibly the most durable of their kind, Caterpillar H20 Defender pants are also delightfully comfortable, with a bunch of amazing features that will make your job an absolute pleasure.
The fabric is truly incredible – 65% cotton, 33% polyester, and 2% Elastane. This provides the best durability, whilst allowing you to move comfortably and freely. The fabric is machine washable, stain resistant, and water resistant.
Practical design is clearly something that Caterpillar has taken to new heights here. Examples of this are evident throughout. The large back pockets are not only reinforced for extra strength, but the stitching makes it easy to remove small nuts, bolts, and screws. That’s the extent of their understanding as to what we need from our work pants.
Two Oxford tool bags attach to the top pocket and can be removed quickly when not needed. It has a bunch of wonderful, purpose designed pockets for tools, your cell phone, you name it. A tough hammer loop is also included. Button enclosure and reinforcements on the leg, around your boot, complete the excellent durable nature of this product.
The knee pad pockets are reinforced for strength, and are really big, allowing for comfortable movement and easy removal of the knee pad. The CAT knee pad inserts are also absolutely fantastic, they move with your knee and provide the ultimate in comfort.
In my opinion, you won’t find better protective work pants than Caterpillar H2O. As tough as nails and wonderfully comfortable. Who better to trust. These guys have earned a stellar reputation for the best, most rugged work gear, and this is probably their best offering to date.
Pants With Knee Pads for Tactical / Survival
Intended for hunting, paint ball, and extreme sports, tactical pants are often camo in design. They generally have tough knee pads on the exterior of the pant leg. Cargo style, with plenty of pockets, is another feature common to these pants.
1. IDOGEAR G3 Combat Pants with Knee PadsYour Heading Here
The IDOGEAR G3 tactical combat pants display a high level of military engineering. To this end, G3 combat pants are made from a tough 50/50 polyester cotton blend, with 4-way, ripstop, stretch woven inserts. The comfortable stretch fit is awesome. At the same time, you’re guaranteed the excellence in terms of durability. Military grade materials are everywhere, from the Velcro used to enclose the YKK zipper, to the elastic and thread.
The waist has a unique adjustment for the perfect, most comfortable fit. You also have a full selection of sizes from European small to XXL.
The height adjustable knee pads can removed. Pockets galore, 10 different sizes positioned everywhere makes gear storage a synch.
A really cool design, which is wonderfully comfortable. Military grade Velcro makes adjustments quick and easy. The same high-grade Velcro seals the zipper and pockets. No compromise on quality or dexterity in movement. They also feature a great camo design.
2. Survival Tactical Gear Pants with Knee Pads
These pants are far from cheap. But, man, are they worth it. Available in a variety of colors and camo, they look as cool as they are incredibly tough and comfortable. Probably my favorite knee pad pants for recreation or work. Double 1000D fabric is used on the areas that experience the most wear and tear: the seat, knee, and lower leg.
The tough knee pads can be removed. For added protection, the tough Cordura fabric, used for the lower legs can be folded back to still provide a good degree of knee protection.
Throughout, tough heavy-duty fabric is used. For ultimate comfort, this material is breathable, and they have included clever ventilation points that can be opened when it gets really hot. The ingenious design goes on to include easy Velcro adjustments. Ever-practical, the Survival Tactical Gear pants have all sizes of pockets everywhere, a total of 14. They also use a metal YKK zipper for strength and ease of use.
Really fantastic, these tactical pants are designed for supreme comfort in all weather. Tough knee pads fit comfortably and can be removed or adjusted to your leg. They come in a variety of sizes (from small to extra-large). You also have a great selection of colors to choose from.
3. ZAPT Tactical Pants with Knee Pads
Possibly the most versatile tactical pants for a great variety of sizes, camo styles, and colors. You’re guaranteed the perfect fit from XS (28 waist) all the way to 4XL (44 waist). No need to make adjustments to try make it fit your size. Even with all these sizes, a Velcro waist adjustment system ensures the best fit. It has all the top design features and high-quality materials that you’ll find with the best tactical pants.
A tough, yet blissfully flexible, ripstop fabric is used. Oversized front thigh pockets also offer access to adjust the height of the removable knee pads.
You have 12 pockets of every size, with cover flaps. Adjustments for the waist and knees are made super-easy with tough Velcro straps.
Amazing convenience, comfort, and practicality at a pretty reasonable price. They make the grade in terms of durability and come in every conceivable size, with additional adjustments.
4. Survival Tactical Gear Men's Airsoft Wargame Tactical Pants with Knee Protection
With external pads and excellent knee inserts, Survival Tactical Gear provide full protection for your knees. These pants also come in all sizes, with a wide range of camo designs and colors to choose from.
Made from comfortable ripstop fabric with a stretch waistband, comfort and durability are a given.
Double belt loops and width adjustment on the legs, are two more great design features. For all weather conditions, these pants have ventilation around the groin and knee area, which can be used open or closed.
16 Well-designed pockets offer the best storage for your gear. They have a good deal of water resistance, but the breathable nature of the fabric means that they are not entirely waterproof.
This is a premium product, providing you with all the comfort you could want, along with the level of durability you expect. Plenty of storage and a great range of design options, complete the package.
5. Elite Tribe Airsoft Hunting Tactical Pants
For extra comfort and easy movement, they’ve included a diamond gusseted crotch, large lower back expansion panel, and removable Air-Flex knee pads. A simple adjustment system ensures the most comfortable fit for the knee pads.
An ultra-durable, double layer seat is just what we need. Large pockets at the front and rear are excellent, and the rear pockets have zippers. There are also a great number of purpose designed pockets for items like flashlights and your knife.
All you could possibly want from tactical pants with exceptional knee protection. The Elite Tribe Airsoft Hunting Tactical pants are up there with the best of them. They’re as practical as it gets, delightfully comfortable and super tough.
Work Pants & Tactical Pants
There is isn’t much difference between tactical pants and work pants with knee pads. Tactical, or survival pants, are manufactured for hunters and recreational sports, like paint ball. Tactical pants will often have a camouflage design, some may be khakis.
The workman’s equivalent will tend be more neutral in color, black, brown, and grey. Some brands include pants with bright reflective safety coloring. Both pants designed for hunters and tradesman will usually have a good selection of utility pockets, like cargo pants.
The pockets are often specifically designed for the intended use. For this reason, tactical pants may have different sizes and shapes of pockets compared to those designed for work. Some can have profession specific pockets, like EMS pants.
When comparing tactical and work pants with knee protection, you’ll notice that the tactical pants often have a thick plastic built-in knee pad on the outside of the pants. This is good for the grit and rocks that are typical for outdoor activities. They offer that bit of extra protection and durability. This can also be good for working on concrete.
Whether you’re an outdoor extreme sports enthusiast, a plumber, electrician, welder, or simply want extra comfort and knee protection when stocking shelves in a store or warehouse, this is the best place to find the perfect pants for the job. From affordable medium-duty pants to more hardworking durable alternatives, we have researched above the market for a fantastic range of options.