If you have been wondering whether it’s okay to wash your down comforter without taking it to professional cleaners, you guessed correctly! You can absolutely wash your down comforter without the pros. All you need is a mild detergent, a few hours to spend at the Laundromat and a little patience.
Some people have no problems, in using their own washing machines while others say washing your comforter at home can damage both the comforter and your washer or dryer. Home machines are not designed strong enough to handle bulky items heavy when soaked. A front loading commercial washer is our safest bet.
It is however unnecessary to clean down comforters more than once every couple of years. At most, clean down comforters once a year.
What You Need
- Mild or all-natural detergent
- Tennis balls
- front loading commercial washer
- Large capacity dryer / sunny outdoor space
The Cleaning Process
- Before you begin on cleaning, check for rips, tears, and openings in seams. If any, repair before cleaning, if not, the damaged or torn area can become worse, and will spill down filling.
- Spot-treat any soils before you wash.
- Set the cleaner on delicate and on a warm water setting.
- Give the washing machine time to agitate for a minute or two for the water and mild detergent to mix thoroughly, and then place the down comforter loosely into the washing machine.
- Place a pair tennis balls into the washing machine to help with the cleaning process and keep the down evenly distributed.
- Set your washing machine on an extra rinse setting; if your machine doesn’t have this, simply rinse one more time before the final spin to ensure all the soap has been washed out.
- To avoid the risk to damage your machine, pull the comforter out and gently squeezing the water out of it. On extracting much of the water out, try spin drying.
- Put dryer on the lowest setting: This may take a few hours but will ensure that all the down is completely dry to prevent mold growth; then load the comforter in the along with a tennis ball or two in a clean white sock or pair of spotless, white, canvas shoes without laces –to help separate and fluff the down clusters as they dry. Ensure the comforter gets plenty of room to toss and fluff as it gets dry.
- Periodically remove the comforter from the dryer and work out any lumps of down. It will take more than 3 hours to dry a down comforter using a large commercial dryer on medium heat.
- Be certain to dry the comforter very thoroughly to avoid mildew. Mildew ruins down comforters; therefore ensure it’s completely dried out before storing. Do not under any circumstances store it in plastic; rather, wrap it in cotton to allow it to breathe.
- If still damp after several hours of dryer time, hang to dry in an area in the house that will allow air to flow on all sides, or dry in your backyard.