A Quick Read on How to Clean a Sleeping Bag

A sleeping bag is a must-have for any camper. But, after a few trips, your sleeping bag can start to smell musty and feel grimy. In this blog post, we'll walk you through the steps of how to clean a sleeping bag so that it's good as new for your next camping trip.

A sleeping bag is an essential piece of gear for any camper, but it can be tough to keep clean. After all, you're using it in the great outdoors, where dirt and dust are everywhere.

But don't worry—with a little care and attention, you can keep your sleeping bag clean and fresh, no matter how often you use it. Here's how:

When Should You Wash Your Sleeping Bag

Washing a sleeping bag is important to maintaining its insulation properties and longevity, but it's not something that should be done too often. Generally, it's best to wash a synthetic sleeping bag after about 10 uses, or every 6 months if it's being used regularly.

For down sleeping bags, it's best to wash them even less often, about once per season or every 20 uses. You'll know it's time to wash your sleeping bag when it starts to lose its loft (the ability to trap heat), doesn't seem as clean as it used to, or develops an unpleasant odor.

Simple Steps for Washing

Step 1: Empty out your sleeping bag and shake it out to remove any loose dirt or debris.

Step 2: If your sleeping bag is down-filled, spot-clean any dirty areas with mild soap and cool water. Be sure to avoid getting the down wet, as this can damage the insulation.

Step 3: If your sleeping bag is synthetic-filled, wash it in a front-loading washing machine on the gentle cycle with warm water and mild detergent.

Step 4: Hang your sleeping bag up to air dry, or machine dry on low heat if necessary. Avoid using high heat, as this can damage the fabric.

You can also do this Without a Soap

If you don't have a mild soap handy and your sleeping bag is not very dirty, you can try using baking soda and vinegar for cleaning.

Step One: Baking Soda Treatment

Start by sprinkling the baking soda all over the sleeping bag. Pay special attention to areas that are particularly dirty or smelly. Once the baking soda is evenly distributed, let it sit on the sleeping bag for at least 30 minutes. This will help to absorb any odors and loosen any dirt or grime.

Step Two: Vinegar Soak

After the baking soda has had a chance to work its magic, it's time to move on to the vinegar soak. Fill your tub or basin with the vinegar and water solution and submerge the sleeping bag. Let it soak for at least 30 minutes, then proceed to step three.

Step Three: Wash It Up

If you have access to a washing machine, great! Throw your sleeping bag in on a gentle cycle with cold water. If not, don't worry—you can easily wash your sleeping bag by hand. Just make sure to use gentle motions and avoid scrubbing too hard so that you don't damage the fabric.

Once you're finished washing, hang your sleeping bag up to dry completely before packing it away.

Other tips to keep in mind:

  • Don't use bleaching agents, strong chemical cleaners, or fabric softeners, as these can damage the insulation.
  • Avoid harsh spin cycles and tumbling motions.
  • Hang to dry in a shady, well-ventilated area.
  • If you use a drier, it can take hours to dry thoroughly. After that leave it in a ventilated area before packing it up.
  • Replace your sleeping bag every 3-5 years, or sooner if it starts to show signs of wear and tear.

Here's a short video on these washing steps:

And that's it! By following these simple steps, you'll have a clean and fresh-smelling sleeping back in no time.

Final Words

Cleaning a sleeping bag may seem like a daunting task, but it's actually quite easy! And with a little bit of care, you can keep your sleeping bag clean and fresh, no matter how often you use it.

And when you are searching for a reliable sleeping bag to take with you on your next adventure, be sure to check out our articles on the best warm-weather sleeping bags and the best double sleeping bags as well. Just tap the buttons below and check out our top choices.

check out the best sleeping bags

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