“if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. This seems to be the thought with most people when it comes to their saddles, but this idea could lead to having to fix some body part when it comes to stirrup leathers. Some get lucky and the stirrup leather will brake right as you put your weight in the stirrup getting on or off your horse. Unless your riding a colt, this is usually in eventful. Other unfortunate souls will be leaned out over a steer or yearling about to take that perfect shot when… Here comes the ground. Ouch!
Take a second to check your leathers every so often. Look for heavy corrosion of the Blevins buckle, this can lead to the actual buckle braking. Look at the holes, are they stretched out or have cracking around the hole. Also, try to fold the leather in a couple spots. If you see the leather crack at the fold then it is probably time for a new pair.
When you decide that you need new stirrup leathers, or after the accident, replace both sides and DO NOT patch them. Patching stirrup leathers may be cheaper, but you are only buying time till… Here comes the ground! Ouch!