Salafy Ink Publications

The Permissibility of Wiping Over the Socks

April 10th, 2017
Imām Bin Bāz
“Al Fataawa” First volume page 35
Abu 'Abdis Salaam Al Juyaanee

Imām Bin Bāz was asked...

I often see some of those who are diligent upon their prayers wiping over their socks when they make wudoo (ablution), even during the summer. I hope you can benefit me with regards to the time period of the permissibility for wiping over the socks, and (whether or not) it is better for the resident to wash both feet or wipe over the socks when making wudoo. The fact is that those who are wiping over their socks do not have any excuse other than the fact that they say this is (a matter of ease) licensed to them.

The generality of the authentic Ahaadeeth (pl. of Hadeeth) point to the fact of the permissibility of wiping over leather or cloth socks. They also point to the permissibility of wiping over them in winter and summer. I don’t know of any legislative proof which restricts wiping over the sock to the winter time. However, one is not permitted to wipe over the socks or other than them except (after the fulfillment) of the following legislated conditions. The socks must cover the areas which are obligatory (to be washed during wudoo)[1]. The sock must be put on while in a state of purity (i.e. after the person has made wudoo and washed his or her feet therein), and (lastly they must) observe the time period allotted (to them) for wiping over the socks.

(This time period) is a day and a night for the resident and three days with its nights for the traveler. The time period begins the first time the socks are wiped after breaking wudoo, according to the strongest statement of the scholars, and Allah is the granter of success.

[1] Translator’s note: The socks must cover the ankles. Therefore, as the scholars explain, it is not permissible to wipe over any style of sock which rest below the ankles, and Allah’s aid is sought.