How To Wash An Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

Being a part of Amazon Associate and some other Affiliate Programs, we may earn a small commission for every qualifying purchase from affiliate links at no extra cost to you. You can read our affiliate disclosure to learn more and also our review process.

One of the most discussed topics in knitting is how to wash an acrylic yarn blanket. The truth is, washing acrylic yarns can be very difficult because they are actually made out of plastic. So, let’s take a step back and talk about how to wash an acrylic yarn blanket altogether before we get too far into this discussion.

There are so many things that can go wrong when washing your acrylic yarn blanket, like a hole in the fabric, the knit unraveling, or fuzzy loops where the stitches should be. Though these mistakes often happen to novice knitters, they can easily be avoided with attention to detail and care.

But to answer the question, Yes, You can wash acrylic blankets in the washing machine. However, please use select the delicate cycle on the washing machine and use cold water and mild detergent. It is possible that the acrylic yarn will break in the washing machine, therefore hand washing your acrylic blanket is recommended if you’re worried about damaging your blanket. A damp acrylic blanket can be difficult to manage, so it’s recommended that you shake it dry once or twice to remove any dirt, lint, or hair.

For the standard weighted blanket, you should just soak it in warm water for around 30 minutes, then raise it until the water is clear. Keep rubbing your blanket until all the visible debris, including dust and hair, has been removed. If it starts to get too grimy, you may need to add extra warm soapy water to the mix. Furthermore, acrylic blankets may be dried in a dryer on a heat setting, but keep in mind to take it out when the moisture level has dropped to 85%. If you have the time, though, the best way to ensure a silky finish is to let it air dry.

Can I Wash the Acrylic Blanket In Washing Machine?

If you must wash your acrylic blanket in a washing machine then you should use the gentle cycle and make sure that you have enough room in the drum of your machine to allow it to move freely. You will also want to add about half a cup of mild detergent and then wash on cold water only.

You can wash acrylic blankets in a washing machine but make sure that it has a delicate cycle because most of the time, it will be safe to wash in the washing machine. But if you have a delicate blanket and there is no way to wash it without damaging it, then handwash is still the better option.

How to Machine Wash an Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

An acrylic yarn blanket is a fantastic way to keep warm when the weather outside is frightful. What’s more, these blankets are also machine washable.

Watch Video: How to Machine Wash Your Yarn

Follow these steps and your acrylic yarn blanket will be clean and ready for cuddling in no time.

1. Remove Excess Dust

Start by giving your blanket a good shake to release any excess dander, dust, and hair that might have collected on it during storage. Give it another shake right before putting it in the washer so that there’s less chance of residual lint or debris clogging up any of the machinery later on.

2. Use Cold Water

Fill the washer with a large amount of cold water. Your blanket should be about 1/3 full of water, cold water prevents your blanket from shrinking.

3. Use Mild Detergent

Add a small amount of mild unscented detergent to the water that you have in your machine. Rinse your acrylic yarn blanket in the washing machine with just this very special soap solution in order to remove any harmful residue such as bleach or fabric softener. You should also make sure that any clothing that is in direct contact with your blanket is washed separately because it may contain some residue or oil from being worn by others.

4. Gentle Cycle

Set the laundry cycle on your washing machine at its gentle cycle and the medium temperature setting. The gentle cycle is great for blankets because it gives the washing machine plenty of time to work its magic and clean your blanket. You will also want to set the washing machine to the little warm temperature setting to make sure that it’s hot enough to get completely clean.

5. Drying

After your yarn blanket has finished washing, carefully remove it from your washer and either place it on a drying rack or directly into a dryer. If you are using a drying rack, make sure that you hang your acrylic yarn blanket at least 6 inches away from any walls in order to prevent contact with any particles on the wall that might cause damage.

Using a drying rack is also a good idea for blankets with multiple colors because it will prevent color bleeding. If you’re not using a drying rack, then just throw your blanket into the dryer on its delicate cycle to make sure that it’s completely dry.

How to Machine Dry An Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

A machine dryer can be an effective way to speed up the drying process on your acrylic yarn sheet or blanket. In most cases, the machine dryer will finish drying your blanket in about 30 minutes or less. You will need to make sure that you have a large enough machine that can hold your entire blanket so that it gets completely dry.

Follow these simple steps:

  1. After you have washed and rinsed your acrylic yarn blanket in the washing machine, remove it from the washing machine and place it into the dryer. Make sure to read all of the care labels on your acrylic yarn blanket because some are not meant for drying just yet. A good rule of thumb is if there are any labels advising against drying in a dryer, then don’t do it.
  2. The temperature setting you will use will depend on your blanket’s weight. If your blanket has a large amount of fringe, don’t use the super high heat setting. This will only damage your acrylic yarn blanket and make it brittle. Likewise, if it is very delicate or thin, then you might want to switch to a little warmer temperature. Just make sure that you set it as close to the coldest temperature as possible.
  3. The length of time for drying will depend on the materials in your blanket. If you have a wool blend or another type of heavy blanket, then you might need to set it for 15-20 minutes approximately. Acrylic yarn is much lighter and less dense and normally dries in about 10 minutes.
  4. All acrylic yarn blankets tend to get hot as they dry so if possible you will want to remove them from the washing machine or dryer when they are about halfway is done in order to avoid burns. When your blanket is completely dry, gently shake it to loosen any remaining debris and wrinkles. Once you have done that, fold it up into its original shape and place it back into its storage bag.

How to Hand Wash an Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

If you have ever been in love with acrylic yarn blankets and the warmth that they provide during cold winter nights, then you know that washing those blankets can be difficult. If you’re really in love with your acrylic yarn blanket, then like many other people, you will probably hand wash your blankets as well.

The main problem that people have with washing an acrylic yarn blanket is that they don’t use enough detergent and they don’t let it air dry. You will want to use the same amount of detergent that you would use for the washer, but you won’t want to put it in until just prior to taking it into the washing machine. Instead, you will want to fill a sink or a large bowl with water and a little bit of mild unscented dish soap.

Immerse your acrylic yarn blanket in this water and ensure that there is enough so that it can fully expand. After about 15 minutes, you want to agitate your blanket in order to loosen any particles such as dust, hair, or lint.

If the water in the sink is clear, then you won’t need to do anything else. If you see any debris like dust and hair then continue agitating your blanket until all of the visible debris has been removed. You may have to add more warm soapy water while doing this as well so that it doesn’t get too dirty. Once you are done with that, let your acrylic yarn blanket sit in this warm soapy water for about 30 minutes.

After the 30 minutes have passed, rinse your acrylic yarn blanket with warm water and make sure that all of the soap is removed from its fibers. After the acrylic yarn blanket is clean, wring it out and let it air dry.

How Do You  Air Dry An Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

If you want to make a blanket that is light and fluffy and not too stiff, then you will need to air-dry it. Leave the wet blanket in place until it has dried thoroughly, usually about 1-2 weeks for the thick blankets while 1 hour so so for light blankets. Keep in mind that acrylic yarn can shrink or warp when drying, so be sure to measure your original dimensions before drying your wet blanket.

If you want to speed up the process of drying, you can use a fan to blow air gently over your blanket. You can also gently rotate the blanket every 2 hours while it dries.

Tips to Wash an Acrylic Yarn Blanket

Before you put your blanket in the washing machine you will want to take some precautions. 

  1. Keep the blanket on the loom or frame as much as possible. So read up on how to wash an afghan in a washing machine and leave your already-made afghans alone unless you have no other choice.
  2. Never put your acrylic yarn blanket into a washing machine. They can get hooked onto the agitator and it may damage the blanket base. Always wash them by hand with lukewarm water and mild detergent.
  3. Never use bleach or any other harsh chemicals on your acrylic yarn blankets, it will ruin them. So stick with mild detergents and warm water for beautiful results every time.
  4. Never use a pressure washer on your acrylic yarn blankets either. It will ruin the fabric.
  5. Don’t wash acrylic yarn blankets with other items unless you are sure the other items can take it. Acrylic will hold onto color and dye from previous washes, so you may get some color bleed from your blanket into other clothing items in the wash. So be aware of what else is in the load and make a choice on whether or not to wash your blanket with them anyway.
  6. Just because the acrylic yarn blanket is washable doesn’t mean you have to wash it. If the blanket is just a little dirty, you can spot-clean the dirty area with a sponge. If it’s really dirty or stained, soak the entire blanket in cool water with some mild detergent and then lay it flat to dry.

How Do You Make Acrylic Blankets Softer After Wash?

Acrylic yarn is a very durable material and it can easily withstand being washed and dried in many different ways. However, people are often surprised when they have an acrylic yarn blanket that causes them to use more detergent than normal just to make it softer.

Watch Video: How To Soften Acrylic Yarn

You will want to make sure that you do not use too much detergent when you decide to hand wash your acrylic yarn blanket. You might want to start with a little less than normal just so that the blanket doesn’t get too dirty or faded. You will then add more soap as needed while washing your blankets and make sure that you rinse with warm water after each wash in order to remove any leftover residue from the soap on your yarn. This is probably the best way to soften up old acrylic yarn blankets.

Can You Machine Wash a 100% Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

Yes, you can machine wash an acrylic yarn blanket. However, you may notice that there are not many specialist manufacturers of machines that can handle 100% acrylic yarns because machine washing can damage your acrylic blanket.

Generally, the acrylic blanket can be washed by hand and air-dried, but there are some exceptions. Hand washing and air drying will reduce the life of your blanket, so try to avoid it if possible.

If it is absolutely necessary that you wash your acrylic yarn blanket in a machine washer or a dryer then you should try to use the delicate cycle or hand wash setting on a gentle setting.

FAQ about How to Wash an Acrylic Yarn Blanket

Does Acrylic Yarn Lose Color When Washed?

Yes, acrylic yarn loses color when it is washed. Acrylic yarn is normally made up of a combination of acrylic fibers, polyester fibers, and other fillers like polyvinyl acetate. When water hits this yarn, it will hold on to some of the colors and also affect the overall softness of the acrylic yarn. many manufacturers recommend washing acrylic yarn by hand in order to avoid color loss.

How Do You Wash Things With Acrylic Yarn?

Scrunch or fold your acrylic yarn items in order to protect their shape. Put them in a pillowcase or other type of cloth bag so they don’t get snagged on something while they are in the washing machine. Set your machine to the delicate or hand wash cycle and add fabric softener if you are going to air dry. If you are going to use a dryer, set it on low or medium heat. Place all of the items in a large basket, bag, or clothing hamper so that they do not get tangled or damaged.

How Often Should I Wash My Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

Once every 3 months should be enough for your acrylic yarn blanket. You can use a gentle soap that does not contain any bleach in order to keep the smell of mildew at bay as well. If you are not in love with the way that your acrylic yarn blanket smells, then you can use vinegar or a mild detergent in order to remove odor-causing elements.

Where Can I Store My Acrylic Yarn Blanket?

One of the best ways to store your acrylic yarn blanket is by folding it and putting it back into its original storage bag. If you have a large blanket, then you can gently place it into a plastic storage container as well. In order to keep your acrylic yarn blanket at its best, you want to make sure that there is plenty of room between the blanket and any other objects in the container or bag.

Does Acrylic Yarn Shrink When Washed?

Your acrylic yarn blanket will shrink anywhere between 5 and 15 percent of its initial state. When you are washing your blanket, you want to make sure that you don’t wring or twist it too much and instead just let it air dry or dry on low heat in the dryer.
The dryer is best for drying acrylic yarn blankets because they tend to hold up better when they are dried at lower temperatures. The main reason why people prefer the dryer over other methods is that they can be done in half the time or less than if they were hand dried.

Final Thoughts

Now that you have read this guide, you should know everything you need to know about washing and caring for your acrylic yarn blanket. If you are able to follow the instructions in this guide, then there is no reason why your acrylic yarn blanket won’t last several years even with regular use.


  1. Reddit – Is there a way to soften acrylic yarn without machine washing???
  2. CrochetVilla – Washing Acrylic Yarn
  3. Reddit – How should I care for my old acrylic blanket?
  4. Reddit – Washing acrylic yarn
  5. Knittinghelp – Washing an acrylic baby blanket



I have been working as a seamstress since I was 12 years old, and I would be happy to teach you what I know. I, along with the rest of my team, investigate numerous sewing, quilting, embroidery, and fabric related how-to guides, and present our findings to you.

Leave a Comment