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Want to know how to wash a weighted blanket?
More and more people are enjoying the relaxing, therapeutic effects of weighted blankets, but careful washing is a must to help ensure longevity and ongoing performance of your blanket.
A quality weighted blanket should come with full wash and care instructions, so always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines where you can.
But if you’ve made your own blanket, or simply want some general guidelines before you buy, here are 5 handy washing tips that should help you keep your blanket clean, comfy and in tip top condition.
Prefer a visual guide? Check out this handy video from RealSimple.
How To Wash A Weighted Blanket In 5 Simple Steps
Important note: Always check your blanket for general wear and tear prior to washing. A well made weighted blanket shouldn’t leak glass beads or pellets, but it does happen. So check seams, stitching or any worn fabric areas before washing or drying.
1 – Consider The Blanket’s Filler
Blankets (hand made or otherwise) filled with sand or organic substances such as rice or beans should not be washed. Sand expands when wet and can be difficult to dry and organic substances are porous, which means they absorb water. This makes them impractical to dry well and can lead to mildew or mould.
There’s a good guide to weighted blanket fillers and how they wash here.
2 – Consider The Blanket’s Weight
Generally speaking, weighted blankets up to around 18-20 lbs should be fine to wash in most standard front loading washing machines. If you’re unceratain what your machine’s capacity is, check the user manual or ask the manufacturer direct.
If you have a top loading machine, these generally hold less capacity, so, again, make sure you know what your machine’s limit is.
Larger blankets (generally over 20 lbs) should be washed in a larger, commercial sized washing machine at a laundrette.
2 – Wash On a Cold Cycle or Hand Wash
Always check a shop bought weighted blanket is washable before throwing it in a machine. The care tag, or manufacturer’s guidelines, should clearly tell you this.
If it’s safe to wash (or you’ve made your own), washing your weighted blanket by hand will subject it to the least strain.
If this feels too cumbersome, though, you can wash cotton, linen, Minky, fleece and flannel fabrics on a gentle, cold machine wash. Wool can be particularly delicate, so hand washing in cold water is likely a better option.
When washing your weighted blanket, opt for a mild detergent. They’re gentler on the fabric and less likely to break down fibres than many harsher detergents.
Due to their size and weight, it’s also best to wash a weighted blanket on its own.
3 – Avoid Fabric Softeners & Bleach
Fabric softeners can cause build up, leading to fabrics becoming rough over time. And bleach, whilst it may blitz those stubborn stains, can, in time, cause fibres to break down. So it’s best to avoid them.
4 – Dry On a Low Heat Or Hang Dry
If you have a tumble dryer with sufficient capacity to hold your weighted blanket (and your care instructions don’t advise otherwise), dry the blanket on a low heat.
Avoid high heats, especially with poly pellets, as depending on the quality of the pellets, they could become soft. Or worse melt.
An alternative is to hang dry your weighted blanket. Avoid hanging the blanket up by one edge, though. Instead, hang the weight evenly to help maintain the blanket’s shape and also avoid too much weight building up on seams. If you don’t have a washing line, try spreading the blanket on a large, clean, flat surface to dry.
When dry, give your blanket a gentle shake to help re-distribute the fillings evenly.
Depending on size and weather conditions, a weighted blanket could take up to 24 or so to hang dry.
5 – Invest In A Removable Duvet Cover
Investing in a removable cover for your weighted blanket is a practical way to help keep weighted blankets clean and in good shape. Simple to remove and launder, they help protect the inner weighted blanket, reducing the need to wash it so often. They’ll also put less strain on your washing machine or dryer.
Many shop bought weighted blankets now come with a removable cover included (here’s a popular, well rated one) or you can purchase one separately. Just remember to make sure you get the right size!
How To Wash A Weighted Blanket FAQS
Still have questions? Here are some common, more specific, questions on how to wash a weighted blanket.
Can You Wash A Weighted Blanket With Glass Beads?
Yes. Glass beads are non porous, so don’t absorb water or moisture. However, it’s always advisable to check the manufacturer’s individual washing instructions on your blanket as well.
How Do You Wash A Weighted Blanket With Plastic Poly Pellets?
The same as you would any other weighted blanket. Again it’s best to follow a manufacturer’s individual washing instructions if you have a shop bought blanket,
Can You Hand Wash a Weighted Blanket?
As long as a weighted blanket’s care instructions state it’s washable, you can hand wash your blanket in a tub, using a mild detergent and cold or tepid water. In fact, hand washing puts less strain on the fabric of a weighted blanket than the general wear and tear of a washing machine.
If you’ve made your own blanket with a filling such as sand, rice or beans, don’t hand wash your blanket (or indeed wash at all), as these materials absorb water and don’t dry well.
Keep in mind though, weighted blankets can be cumbersome to hand wash and also heavy when water logged. So unless washing instructions state otherwise, you may find a washing machine easier.
How Do I Wash A 20 lb Weighted Blanket?
Whatever the weight of your blanket, it’s advisable to check your washing machine model can safely accommodate the weight before washing it. As a very general guide, most standard front loading washing machines can usually take up to 18 lbs, whereas top loading machines generally hold quite a bit less.
For weighted blankets of around 20lb, or over, you’ll need to use a larger, commercial sized washing machine at a launderette.
How Do I Remove Stubborn Stains From A Weighted Blanket?
However hard we try to keep things clean, sometimes spillages happen.
Just remember to make sure an individual stain removal tip is safe to use on the fabric you’re using it on.
How To Wash A Weighted Blanket – A Final Word
When washing a weighted blanket, it’s always best to follow the manufacturers guidelines where you can. Most weighted blankets should come with full washing instructions on how to best care for and wash your blanket.
But if you’ve made your own or simply want some basic guidelines on how to wash a weighted blanket, the steps above should help you keep your blanket clean and in tip top shape.
If you want to limit how much you wash your weighted blanket, opt for a blanket with a removable, washable cover.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is intended as a general guideline only. Always follow manufacturer’s care & washing instructions, where applicable.