The ultimate guide on how to wash a weighted blanket
Washing a weighted blanket needs extra care than your average sheet. Think of it as a heavy duvet. How much weight can your machine handle? Will it stress your machine? Will your blanket fit? What's your machine's maximum weight limit? If you're looking for a weighted blanket, or have one already, you've probably asked yourself these questions. So we did some digging to get answers. Below you'll learn how to tell if your washing machine is at its maximum capacity, how to much weight a front loader vs a top loader can handle, how to calculate your load size, steps to washing a weighted blanket. Will a weighted blanket stress your washing machine? Most blankets can be washed at home in your machine, but check your washing machine’s carrying capacity to find out how much weight it can carry. For the most part, a top loader can handle up to 22 pounds, and a front loader can handle up to 25 pounds. If the machines has a smaller tub, sometimes it will handle less weight, but that depends on specific models. You can try looking up this information but it can be difficult to find. So what do you if you can't find the weight capacity of your washing machine? One easy way to tell if you've reached your weight limits for your machine, is if your cycle stops or you start to hear noises coming from the tub itself. And if you have a modern machine, an error message code will appear. If you place your weighted blanket in the washing machine and it works, you're good to go. For heavy blankets that exceed 25 pounds, you should wash it in a commercial washing machine that can handle heavier weights. Can you wash a weighted in a top load washer? Top loaders are the traditional machines that are in most household. They hold about 12 to 15 pounds, depending on your model. Front loaders handle a few pounds more than front loaded machines. To accommodate a larger blanket, use a high efficiency top load washing machine without a centre agitator. How much weight can your washing machine handle? The maximum weight capacity will vary based on the type of machine you have, the size of your machine and model. To wash a 15 pound weighted blanket, you’ll need a washing machine with 3 to 4 cubic feet or more. To wash a 20 pound weighted blanket, you’ll need a washing machine with 5 cubic feet or more. Top loaders can handle about 12-15 pounds, while front-loaders can hold about 18 pounds on average. Heavier blankets may require it to be washed in a commercial washing machine. 3 cubic ft holds 8 to 12 pounds 3.2 cubic ft holds 14 pounds 4.5 cubic ft holds 16 pounds 5 cubic ft or more holds 18 to 25 pounds Use a commercial washer for a blanket weight exceeding 25 pounds Capacity < 3 cu. ft. 3.2+ cu. ft. 4.5 + cu. ft. 5 + cu. ft. Weight capacity 8-12 lbs 14+ lbs 16+ lbs 18-25 lbs Blanket weight Light Medium Medium Heavy Machine type Compact Top loader Top loader Front & Top loader Throw Yes Yes Yes Yes Queen Yes Yes Yes Yes King No No Yes Yes Top Loaders Hold about 12 to 15 pounds. The hold a few pounds less than front loaders. Some drawbacks are that they can become unbalanced easily and can be tough on clothes. Highest selling washers in the US cost less than front loader and can be tough on clothes. High Efficiency Top loaders Can handle than a regular top loader machine. Some drawbacks are, they cost just as much as front loaders, and can tangle up clothes. Front Loaders Hold about 18 pounds on average. They are top performing machines, that handle more weight than then top loader but similar high efficiency top loaders. They can tackle tough stains and gentler on clothes and more capacity than top loaders. Cubic size is about 5 ft and above. Comes in a compact size less than 3 cubic feet. How to calculate your washing machines capacity in cubic feet If you’re not sure what your machines washing machine capacity is, one trick is to measure it in cubic feet. To calculate the capacity of your washing machine tub use this formula: Volume in cubic feet = radius x radius x height x piRadius is diameter divide by 2Height of your drumPi is about 3.134 Measure units in feet. For example: volume in cubic feet = 1.15 x 1.15 x 1 x 3.131 = 4.14 cubic feet 11 easy steps to cleaning your weighted blanket 1. Check your washing machines weight capacity You can look up your model and contact your manufacturer to find the weight capacity for your model, or measure it directly using our calculation above. 2. Check the care Label Read all the care labels for your blanket and follow this will tell you how to wash your blanket. 3. Check for wear If you wash your blanket very often, this can stress the seams of the blanket. Check the blanket for wear, checking the seams and stitching, and mend it to prevent it from unravelling further. This is important for blankets with pellets that may come loose in the wash. Tip: check for stains before washing, if you put your blanket in the dryer before removing the stain, it’ll be harder to remove due to the heat. 4. Remove Cover If your blanket comes with a cover, remove it for washing. The inside layer should be hand washed. Tip: turn the cover inside out to prevent pilling. Pilling is not cause by the washer, its caused by normal wear and tear from the fibres on your blanket. 5. Load machine Place your blanket loosely in your washer, so that it’s evenly distributed and one side is not heavier than the other. Make sure it’s loose and not snug fitting. If you have a centre agitator, add your blanket around the agitator, and follow the sides of your basket. For top loading machines, submerge your blanket completely under the water and be no more than 3/4 full. Your blanket should fit snug, without any cramming. Wash your blanket alone with no other items, so you’re not adding more weight to the load and so your blanket washes properly. For most weighted blankets your load size is going to be large to extra large. Calculating load size: Small load = 1/3 full Medium load = 1/2 full Large load = 3/4 full Do not overload your washing machine, it should never be 100% full. It will not clean your clothes and leave detergent residue on your blanket. It may even damage your items. 6. Wash on the delicate cycle Wash on the gentle cycle unless otherwise noted by the care label. A gentle cycle is comparable to hand washing. It uses low speed agitation, then rinses and washes it to a lower temperature protecting your blanket and your machine better. 7. Wash cold Most laundry does well in cold or warm water. For cotton t-shirts you can normally choose hot water, but for cotton weighted blankets choose a colder temperature so it’s more gentle on your blanket. The hotter the water, the harder stains will set. 8. Add your detergent Don’t use detergents without chlorine, bleach, or additives (such as fabric softeners) so they don’t break down or fade the colour of the fabric. Look for biodegradable detergent to make your blanket last longer. 9. Wash as needed When it comes to washing there is no right answer, and the laundry police won’t come get you. Weighted blankets don’t require you to wash them as often. Wash your blanket once every month or so if you use the blanket often. If you don’t use your blanket as often, wash as needed. 10. Drying You can tumble dry low for a few cycles but we recommend air drying. For air drying, hang it to dry, but lay it flat just to avoid stretching the blanket. Tips: for air drying, lay you blanket flat on towels to help it dry faster and absorb water. Place it on the floor or bed. You can even roll your blanket between towels to get moisture out. For tumble drying, never overload your dryer, your blanket should be able to tumble freely. Dry your blanket alone with no other items, so that it dries completely. Shake out wet clothes before placing them in dryer. Remove your blanket promptly at the end of drying time. Remove the dryer’s lint after every use, so it dries the best. 11. Storage Store weighted blankets in a dry, cool place, dark space. Your closet is an ideal storage spot, where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate. Place them in a cotton bag, or plastic container. Make sure your blanket is dry before storing it away, to prevent any mold from growing. Frequently asked questions about washing weighted blankets Can you wash a 12 lb weighted blanket? Yes, you can wash a 12 pound weighted blanket in most washing machines including compact machines that are less than 3 cubic feet. Washing machines that are 3 cubic feet and above, should be able to easily handle it. Check your washing machine model to confirm. Wash your blanket once a month or as needed. Can you put a 15 pound weighted blanket in the dryer? Yes, you can put a 15 pound blanket in the dryer. A machine that's 4 cubic feet or more should handle it, but check with your check your washing machine model to confirm. How to wash a 25 pound weighted blanket? You can wash a 25 pound weighted blanket in a larger machine with 6.0 cubic feet or more but that depends on the washing model. For smaller machines it may be too much weight for it. If the machine stops spinning at any point, you've reached the max capacity for your machine. For extra heavy blankets, consider taking it to a commercial washing machine. How do you wash a weighted blanket that says spot clean only? Spot cleaning means means that you only clean the part of the blanket that has a spill or stain on it. You can't wash your blanket in a washing machine, hand wash it, or professional clean it (dry/wet cleaning).