Home & Garden Has Anyone Washed Their Down Comforter in a Steam Washer?

buzzytoes

Dog Chauffeur
O.G.
Jun 7, 2008
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I have a down (real down, not down alternative) comforter with a tag that says dry clean only. I just got a new LG Steam Washer and it occurred to me it might be ok to wash the comforter on the steam cycle and not ruin the comforter. Just curious if anyone has done this with any success?? I got the comforter on sale so it wouldn't be horrible if I did ruin it but I'm not sure I'm willing to take the chance without hearing some stories from people. :biggrin:
 

Mimster

Member
Jul 20, 2009
3,445
5
Ours are washed about once a year. My dry cleaner actually told me that it is better to machine wash them than to dry clean. I don't have a large capacity washer so we have him do them for us. Here's a great link to caring for your down comforters or pillows. http://www.ehow.com/how_4158_care-down-pillows.html

I highly suggest getting a pillow cover or a duvet cover.
 

gillianna

O.G.
Dec 27, 2005
8,400
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My sister has washed her very expensive down pillows in her LG steam washer but the problem seems to be drying them..... It took forever in her LG dryer and she used some special setting for them. I have an alternative down comforter and I wash it with the steam in my LG washer but it is way too big and bulky for my dryer so I have to sit it outside on my large drying rack to dry.
Can you use the dry clean setting with the special dry clean products in the washer or dryer (I forgot which one). My sister does that with many of her expensive clothes.
 
Sep 13, 2007
6,030
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The prairies of the Midwest
I've always washed our down comforter in the wash machine on the gentle or handwash cycle. If I feel ambitious I take it to a laundrymat where I can wash and dry it in the big machines. I hate the idea of all those dry-cleaning chemicals in something I sleep with my nose in.

To dry it I toss it over a line outside or over the shower rod in the bathroom. Dries real fast. Just fluff it up by giving it a good shaking.

I always keep it covered with a duvet so I don't need to wash it so often.
 

Kitsunegrl

Fill the Giant Pig!
O.G.
Nov 7, 2006
13,315
87
Cajun Country
I wash mine in the washing machine and use the lower heat cycle to dry. I used to think that it required special handling until someone pointed out that the geese get wet and it doesn't hurt them, so why would washing the down/feathers be bad? LOL...

I have covers for mine also. Plus I have a thinner blanket that I use as the very top layer of the bedding since our doberman must sleep on the bed. Much easier to wash that than the comforter!
 

ILuvShopping

★☆★★☆★★☆★
Jun 4, 2007
23,822
3
Iowa
i think i was told once when i bought a down coat that if i ever washed it i should put a couple tennis balls in the dryer with it so that the feathers didn't clump together. or maybe so it wouldn't smell weird.... i dunno. the tennis balls were suppose to do something lol
 
Sep 13, 2007
6,030
3,455
The prairies of the Midwest
i think i was told once when i bought a down coat that if i ever washed it i should put a couple tennis balls in the dryer with it so that the feathers didn't clump together. or maybe so it wouldn't smell weird.... i dunno. the tennis balls were suppose to do something lol
I did that for years and years whenever I washed my down jackets. Tossed tennis balls in the dryer along with the coats. Then DH, the former physics major, insisted it was the stupidest thing he'd ever heard. So we experimented with down coats and blankets. Dried some with tennis balls, some without. Made absolutely no difference in how fluffy they came out.
 

ILuvShopping

★☆★★☆★★☆★
Jun 4, 2007
23,822
3
Iowa
I did that for years and years whenever I washed my down jackets. Tossed tennis balls in the dryer along with the coats. Then DH, the former physics major, insisted it was the stupidest thing he'd ever heard. So we experimented with down coats and blankets. Dried some with tennis balls, some without. Made absolutely no difference in how fluffy they came out.
oh - haha! good to know
 

Cates

O.G.
Jan 9, 2008
1,757
1
Wilmington, NC
I wash my down comforter in my washing machine all the time. Hasn't been a problem at all, I just have to do 2 full dry cycles on high heat to get it fully dry.
 

k2sealer

I only wear live fur
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Aug 30, 2007
1,979
8
My mom worked for REI (a recreational store) for years and is an avid hiker/backpacker. She always washed down sleeping bags and comforters in the wash machine. She would usually take them to the coin laundry because their washers are larger capacity.

Drying takes a lot more time because you need to dry on the lowest possible setting. You should also take the blanket out a couple of times during the drying and shake it out to make sure none of the fluff is compacting anywhere.

I think the tennis balls (or dryer balls) are so the blanket is less likely to get twisted up in the dryer and have sections that aren't getting dried.
 
Oct 20, 2008
4,172
1,317
manhattan
My mom worked for REI (a recreational store) for years and is an avid hiker/backpacker. She always washed down sleeping bags and comforters in the wash machine. She would usually take them to the coin laundry because their washers are larger capacity.

Drying takes a lot more time because you need to dry on the lowest possible setting. You should also take the blanket out a couple of times during the drying and shake it out to make sure none of the fluff is compacting anywhere.

I think the tennis balls (or dryer balls) are so the blanket is less likely to get twisted up in the dryer and have sections that aren't getting dried.
just like this, down washed in large capacity commercial washing machine with mild soap and dried with dryer balls or big rolled up socks (i don't like the way tennis balls smell).

the balls are actually to break up the clumps of wet down and to make sure they are fluffed up when drying.
 

lilac0485

O.G.
Sep 5, 2007
2,942
1
New York
I just washed my down comforter in the washing machine, it took forever to dry in the dryer. You have to be careful because I read that if the comforter doesn't get fully dry it is easy for mold to grow. We used to just hang comforters in the sun to clean/bleach when I lived with my parents.

Use wool dryer balls instead of tennis balls. Tennis balls still have some chemicals.