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Work Jackets

Caterpillar H2O Defender Pants Review

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Rating : 8.2/10
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Performance Breakdown


Bottom Line

Equipped with a total of 18 pockets and made with innovative water-resistant fabric, the Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant can effortlessly withstand the most demanding environments and jobs.


  • Flexible, water-resistant material
  • Multiple pockets (18 including detachable holster pockets)
  • Reinforced knees with knee pad pockets
  • Reflective piping for enhanced visibility in dark settings


  • Not fully waterproof
  • Not for casual wear


Water-resistant H2O Flex (65% cotton, 33% polyester, 2% elastane)


1.91 lbs / 0.87 kg / 30.6 oz

Number of Pockets

18 (including the detachable holster pockets)


No (water-resistant)

Knee Reinforcement

Yes – Cordura knee panels with knee pad pockets


Relaxed (true to size)




With many pockets to keep my tools and other personal items easily accessible, the Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant made my work much more convenient while ensuring that my comfort and mobility were not negatively affected. In addition, the water-resistant fabric brought significant advantages, especially when I needed to do my job outdoors when it was drizzling or in areas where I was exposed to splashes of water and other liquids.

The Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant is built with a water-resistant fabric to keep you protected from being soaked when working outdoors for a short while when it is drizzling or with occasional water exposure. I loved how versatile the pant was with the holster pockets that can be attached or removed whenever needed, allowing me to choose how to maximize the pant use as I see fit. The knee reinforcement was just as remarkable as it was strengthened with the Cordura fabric. The knee panels came with pockets that can be further reinforced with knee pad pockets for even greater cushioning and protection. The heavy-duty construction of the work pant makes it ideal for demanding jobs, although the style makes it unsuitable for casual wear. We will delve deeper into the features that make the Defender an awesome work pant and if there are any drawbacks to this remarkable product.


Ideal For

  • Demanding work environments that will benefit from the pants’ water-resistant material
  • Professions that require tools to be easily accessible throughout the day
  • Jobs that involve kneeling and constantly crawling or for long periods


Performance Analysis


I loved how the Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant easily adapted to my movements, so working all day was much easier. The stretch fabric allowed me to deal with various activities without worrying that the pants would interfere with my movements. This enabled me to work as efficiently and quickly as possible to finish the tasks throughout the day without sacrificing my comfort. The Cordura reinforcement on the knees made it possible for me to kneel or crawl for extended periods as needed by my job while avoiding the extreme discomfort that would await if I used work pants without knee reinforcements. I welcomed how the articulated knees were structured, with the material on the back portion reduced so that the squatting and bending did not result in circulation issues for the back of the knee area. I fully appreciated how the gripper tape on the waistband worked hard to keep my shirt in place, so I did not need to pause repeatedly to deal with tucking it in again. The extra-wide back belt loop on the center worked continuously to keep my belt in place and prevent it from shifting uncomfortably every time I squatted and bent over to finish the necessary tasks.



This is where the Defender shines the brightest. With 18 pockets, including the detachable holster pockets, you will not need to worry that you need more space for your essential work or personal items. I had no problem carrying my indispensable gadgets and tools around for the rest of the day. I could easily access them as needed because I had more than enough pockets and compartments throughout the pants. The front slash pockets are roomy enough to hold the items you need to get to quickly, while a cellphone pocket on the right thigh will keep your gadget secure with its hook and loop closure. A cargo pocket with an expansion pleat or bellow comes with layered pockets for various objects that you may need for work and personal purposes for the entire day. This pocket also has a secure flap closure, so you will not need to worry that your movements will cause the stashed items to fall out accidentally. One back pocket can be used for keeping more small items or tools that need to be easily accessible, while the other comes with a flap for added safety for your items, such as your wallet.


Fit and Sizing

These pants come in a classic fit that is true to size. They fit nicely without feeling too tight but are not so loose that the material gets in the way of natural movements. I liked the 18-inch leg opening that was wide enough to fit over most boots, so the fabric did not bunch up in an unsightly manner on the ankle area. The gripper tape inside the waistband helped maintain a secure fit for the pant, keeping it in place, so I did not need to adjust it constantly throughout the day.



The Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant is built from a water-resistant material that can withstand occasional splashes of water or can even be used outdoors for short periods when it is drizzling. In these cases, the occasional or light exposure to liquids will not bother the comfortable and dry feeling inside the pants. However, as it is not a waterproof pair of pants, it is not ideal outdoors during a heavy downpour since the water will eventually penetrate the material.



The water-resistant material used to create these pants is breathable and allows air to penetrate. This means it is easier to prevent heat from accumulating inside the pants, which can be a problem when working on physically demanding tasks in warm environments. In addition, with the air allowed to pass freely through the material, the interior of the pants remains cool for the rest of the day for superior comfort that will not interfere with your productivity.


Quality and Durability

The Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant is equipped with articulated knees that allow full mobility in this part so you can move more freely and easily when tackling various tasks. The knee area is further enhanced with Cordura reinforcements to protect the area from abrasion, especially when working in tough settings that require a lot of kneeling and crawling. The knees have built-in pockets that can accommodate extra knee pads for even more strengthening and padding, so you will not need to suffer from pain when you are required to finish the job while staying on your knees for the better part of the work shift. The bottom hem has a scuff guard made with Cordura fabric to protect this part from being easily damaged with constant and heavy usage, so you can fully maximize the pants’ functionality and aesthetics for a long time without worrying about premature deterioration. The back and front of the knees come with reflective piping that will be extremely beneficial for safety when working in low-visibility sites. The detachable holster pockets give you the freedom to use them as you see fit, allowing you to quickly attach or remove them to adapt to your space requirements. These removable pockets can also be tucked into the slash pockets in front if you do not need the extra compartments to ensure they will not get in the way. A D-ring at the waist area can be used for keeping your pass attachment or keys in an accessible area while ensuring that they will not get lost while you are busy at work. The water-resistant coating on the pants protects you from light liquid splashes, enabling you to work for short periods under a light drizzle without your legs getting soaked. However, as these are not waterproof pants, they are unsuitable for working hours under heavy rain.


Other Versions

The Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant is available in the following colors: black and dark sand graphite. In addition, they are offered in regular, big & tall sizes to accommodate different sizing requirements to ensure maximum comfort and performance.


Conclusion & Verdict

The reasonably priced Caterpillar H2O Defender Pant comes with a host of features and benefits that make it a more suitable choice than regular jeans when it comes to full functionality on job sites. Multiple pockets – 18 in total – ensure that you always have a space for your tools and other essentials while you work throughout the day. In addition, the rugged construction of the pant makes it an ideal choice for demanding work environments, although the lack of complete waterproofing makes it unsuitable for extremely wet conditions.

Luke Davis

Luke is the lead author on He has a vast experience in construction engineering and project management in California and Texas, where he had the chance to put to test a wide range of safety boots and PPE. Outside work, Luke is an avid hiker and not surprisingly a DIY fanatic!