How to Wash a Down Comforter: Stepwise Instruction of Your Comforter Washing
Nothing surpasses the coziness, soft and warm feeling one gets from a down comforter after a long, tedious day. You will always like the comfort it gives you until you realize it is becoming dirty and needs some cleaning. That does not end there since the biggest worry is thinking about how to wash a down comforter.
Most people would find hand washing to be tedious and time-consuming. Others would perceive that using the washing machine could either damage the washer, dryer or the comforter due to its bulky size.
Still, some people brush off the idea of taking it to the dry cleaner because of the high charges.
All in all, it is recommended that comforters should be washed at least twice or once a year. This too depends on the health state of someone; whether allergic or asthmatic. Since they provide a good environment for harboring dust mites, dirt and oil, it is essential to wash them regularly.
Washing should be done in moderation to ensure that the down filling is not exposed to damages. Additionally, comforters are better absorbers and would, therefore, produce unpleasant odors when not cleaned for a period.
Let's Start to know The Step-wise tutorial on how to wash a down comforter
What You Need?
When using a washing machine, you need;
For Hand Washing;
For a do-it-yourself dry cleaning;
Step 1. Read the Label
Before anything else, it is wise to read and follow the given instructions stated by the manufacturer. The labels would always direct you to the best way to handle the comforter and how to wash it without incurring damages.
Some down comforters are very delicate that they can only be hand-washed. Others can be cleaned using the washing machine, dry cleaner or both. Additionally, the labels may go ahead to state the specific washing temperatures for both the washer and the dryer.
Step 2. Re-Examine the Down comforter
You need to cross-check and see if it need to clean. Sometimes, a single stain may irritate you to the extent that you just have to wash it.
However, washing the entire comforter is not the perfect solution for the stain you can remove easily. Frequent washing can damage the down filling, interfere with the fluffiness that facilitates insulation and strips its natural oils.
As you untuck the comforter out of your bed ready to clean it, consider the following:
Step 3. Load the Down Comforter into the Washer
Most home washers are small to medium-sized. If your comforter is a king, queen or full-size one, then it might not be accommodated in the washer. You should probably take it to the laundromat and use on the extra-large capacity front loading machine.
In most cases, small household washers could damage the material and even rip the cover. Some machine manuals would state the maximum comforter size that it could withstand.
Step 4. Set the Machine
Some manufacturers would always direct you to the ideal temperature of both the dryer and the washer.
Make sure not to stray from them lest you ruin the comforter with the heat. It is recommended to operate with the delicate settings and on warm water temperatures rather than hot or cold water.
What You Need To Know
Step 5. Drying the Comforter
You can dry your comforter using the dryer, drying rack or simply hang on the clothesline.
The dryer should be large enough to accommodate the down comforter. If you don’t have one, you can walk to the launderette and work from there.
Pros of Using Dryer
Cons of Using Dryer
When you do not have a dryer, or you have limited outdoor space, you can air dry your comforter on the drying rack. Additionally, you can transfer it from the dryer to this rack, to complete the drying.
Unlike the machine drying, this one is inexpensive and would make your clothes last longer. Comforters are more likely to experience tear and wear when machine-dried.
Airing your comforter on direct sunlight has more benefits than using a dryer. The sun is capable of naturally killing the dust mites, preventing lousy odor and brightening the colors. To ensure even drying and maintaining the redistribution of the down filling, you have to keep flipping and fluffing them.
As you check it at intervals of half an hour, you can look for any signs of damp spots and clumps and manage the situation. If you are not patient enough to tire yourself with this, then desist from line drying entirely.
Pros of Air-Drying
Though it is quite annoying to read a ‘hand-wash only’ label on your comforter, this method of cleaning is the most gentle. It may be tedious, time-consuming, messy and any other negative adjective that you can baptize it.
Hand washing is the perfect alternative for
Step 1. Fill the bathtub or Sink with Water
Fill the sink with enough water and add a cap full of mild laundry detergent. You may resolve to use warm or lukewarm water as opposed to cold water. Afterwards, you can ideally agitate the detergent in water to ensure an even wash.
Step 2. Submerge the down Comforter in the Water
Immerse the comforter in water and ensure that it is entirely covered. You can have it settle for a few minutes to soak before washing it gently by hand.
Step 3. Rinse
Drain the soapy water and rinse the comforter thoroughly with clean, warm water. You can continue rinsing it subsequently until you can longer see suds and all detergent is washed off. Over-foaming and the inability to thoroughly wash out the detergent would ruin the down fill or promote clumping.
Step 4. Dry it
Immediately after rinsing it, you should gently squeeze out the excess water before drying out. Wringing is not recommended as it would damage the filling.
Even if you hand-wash the down comforter, you can still load it on a dryer for drying. Alternatively, if you want to maintain it naturally, you can air-dry it on a clothesline or a drying rack.
Pros of Hand washing
Cons of Hand washing
Dry Cleaning a Down Comforter
Many people do not like the idea of taking their stuff to the dry cleaner due to the high cost. The charges may go up to $40 depending on the size of the comforter and the place you have taken it. However, you may also consider doing it yourself in the comfort of your home and saving on the costs.
You need to cross-check the comforter and determine if it deserves to be dry cleaned.
By doing this, you can help eliminate the possibility of taking it to be laundered by a professional.
If the cover is made of cotton, linen or polyesters, you can use the alternative of the washing machine. However, in this case, you should place it in a laundry mesh bag and operate with the delicate setting.
For wool, cotton or silk, you can hand-wash using a mild detergent. Fabrics that are mandatory to be dry cleaned include fur, velvet, suede, taffeta or leather; though they are rarely used in down comforters. But you have to wash 100% wool filled comforter in a washing machine.
Step 1. Make Ready a DIY Cleaning Kit
If you do not have any, you can make a purchase. These kits use characteristic moist cloths that steam the comforters in the dryer.
Step 2. Pack the Comforter inside the Bag
Place the down comforter inside the dry cleaning bag together with the unfolded moist cloth. It should be loose, free and occupy only half the bag. In case the bag is small, directly load the comforter in the dryer but use two cloths instead.
Step 3. Tumble dry
Tumble dry the bag for about half an hour on medium heat. Always avoid the automatic setting. The dryer should be large enough to allow the comforter to tumble.
Step 4. Dry
Take out your comforter when slightly damp, and air dries it on a clothesline or a drying rack.
Point to Note
You should keep in mind that dry cleaning at home is all about taking a risk. It is potentially hazardous and may ruin your comforter either through scorching or shrinkage of the filling.
If you can’t stand the loss, then take it to a professional for a reliable service. However, you can take a risk if you think that the cost of dry cleaning is much more than it would cost you for a new one.
Additional Tips on Caring for your Down Comforter
Frequently Asked Questions
Que: How often should I wash my down comforter?
Ans: Frequent washing of comforters would always ruin the filling and facilitate wear and tear especially when machine-washed. It still recommended that you wash it at least once or at most twice a year. However, if you suffer from allergy or asthma, you might be forced to do the washing at close intervals.
To be safe and avoid all these struggles, you can resolve to use a duvet cover to protect the comforter from duet and dust.
Que: How can I manage a down comforter used by my kid who frequently bed-wets?
Ans: It is ideal that you buy a waterproof comforter cover.
Que: How do I ensure my down comforter and the filler lasts longer?
Ans: There are several things you ought to consider:
Que: How can I clean a comforter which is too big for my washing machine?
Ans: Well, that’s quite easy. You can either hand-wash it on a bathtub or take it to the laundromat where there are extra-large capacity front-loaders.
Que: What is the down comforter made of?
Ans: Unlike most of which are made of synthetic, down comforters are naturally made of down feathers acquired from birds. The down is an efficient thermal insulator and would retain heat for a long period.
Que: What is the major disadvantage of down comforter?
Ans: When exposed to moisture and dampness, it will form clumps and mildew. Additionally, it easily absorbs and retains odors, a factor that may not augur well with allergic or asthmatic individuals.