How to wash a weighted blanket

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Weighted blankets can help alleviate the symptoms of anxiety. They can help kids with ADHD self-soothe, reduce insomnia and even cool you down to help you sleep more comfortably.

But whether you are currently shopping for the perfect weighted blanket or already own and love one, you might wonder if they require special care. Actually, the best way to wash one depends on the materials it’s made from.

Factors To Consider

All weighted blankets have pockets that are filled with a substance that gives them weight. The most common fillers include the following:

  • micro glass beads
  • steel beads
  • plastic poly beads

Pebbles, sand and grains are sometimes used as well. All of these fillers provide different pros and cons to a weighted blanket. For example, blankets with organic filler are the least durable and hardest to wash.

It also helps to consider the fabric used for the blanket. If you know these components, it can help determine the best washing method for your weighted blanket.

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General Rules

First, consider the reason for washing. If there’s just a spot on your blanket that needs removing, you might want to consider just treating the spot rather than subjecting your entire blanket to a harsher process more frequently.

Of course, if your weighted blanket includes cleaning instructions, it is always best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the best results.

Use a gentle detergent and no fabric softener. Avoid bleach and vinegar.

Machine Wash And Dry

You can safely wash a weighted blanket filled with glass beads in your washing machine. Weighted blankets filled with steel beads may also be washed in the machine, but be aware that steel beads are heavy and could tear the fabric. Poly pellets can also be washed, but again, you’ll need to take care — the pellets can start to melt in high heat.

For a cotton, flannel, fleece, bamboo or faux-fur blanket, use a cold or cold/warm cycle as long as the filling is heat-resistant. Do not wash your weighted blanket on high heat.

That said, if you do not have a front loading or a high-efficiency top-loading washer without an agitator, you might not want to wash your blanket at home. A commercial machine, such as the large ones found at a laundromat, could be a safer option for your blanket, especially if it weighs more than 10 pounds. That’s because any tearing of the fabric could cause the filler to spill out, and the weight of a wet blanket could ruin your washer.

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Air drying is best, but you can also machine dry these blankets on low heat, making sure there is ample room for them to properly circulate. Again, if you have to cram it in the dryer, you might fare better heading to the laundromat to use a commercial dryer.

Hand Wash And Hang (Or Lay Flat) To Dry

Weighted blankets filled with plastic beads or poly pellets should not be washed at high temperatures or machine dried, as the plastic inside could melt.

Similarly, avoid machine washing and drying a blanket made from wool, as the fabric is delicate and prone to shrinking.

Instead, spot treat any stains and hand wash blankets made from these materials. Hang them on the line or lay them flat, such as on a drying rack, to dry.

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Dry Clean Only

If your weighted blanket happens to include organic filler, such as beans, rice or corn or another unusual material like sand, avoid getting it wet if at all possible. Sand will expand and clump and other natural fillers can become soggy, decompose or grow mold.

Blankets made from wool, rayon or linen could also be good candidates for a trip to the dry cleaner. Additionally, some manufacturers will recommend that their weighted blankets be dry-cleaned only.

Check with a trusted dry-cleaning professional to see if they are able to clean the blanket for you.

You can also consider buying a weighted blanket with a duvet cover so you can minimize the cleaning of the inner layer, like this Weighted Idea option from Amazon (one of the recommendations made by the reviews team on our sister site Don’t Waste Your Money).

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Taking proper care of your weighted blanket can result in years of relaxing comfort for you and your family, so you definitely want to make sure you’re doing it right!

Cleaning & Organization, Home, Tips & Advice

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About the Author
Tricia Goss
Tricia Goss is a Texas-based writer and editor with nearly two decades of experience. She is passionate about helping readers improve their skills, gain knowledge and attain more happiness in life. When she’s not working, Tricia enjoys traveling with her husband and their dog, especially to visit their five grandchildren.

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