How To Wash Wool Blankets? (The Proper Way)

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Few things make us more content than snuggling under our favorite blanket. The heaviness of the fabric cooling us off, the softness cushioning our body, and the familiar smells of home cocooning us all make for a comforting evening.

But keeping a clean wool blanket has proven to be more difficult than expected. Wool blankets are expensive, so we don’t want to throw them out (yet). There’s also nothing worse than being cuddled up with a dirty, musty blanket when your nose tells you it just needs a quick washing but you can’t bear to part with it yet another day. Those moments lead many people to rely on dryer sheets or Febreeze to clean their blankets. We wanted to find a better solution.

Check Also: Does Wool Shrink?

Wool should be cleaned to remove all dirt, oils, and bacteria that have become lodged in the wool fabric. This should be done after every fourth wearing. To clean your wool blanket, start by taking it to a professional dry cleaner to put it through a commercial wool cleaning machine. 

Commercial cleaners have all the proper equipment to completely clean and launder your blanket, including hand washing, cleaning with bleach, drying, and ironing services. They also have special detergents and softeners to protect the natural harshness of wool fibers.

A good dry cleaner can remove dirt and oils that are embedded in wool fibers, but until a blanket has been professionally cleaned it will continue to harbor dirt and bacteria.

Can Wool Blankets Be Washed And Dried?

It is not recommended to wash a wool blanket at home, even though it is a good way to save money. Washing a wool blanket at home will still potentially leave an oil residue and cause pilling. Professional cleaners can clean wool blankets with bleach and use softeners to prevent this from occurring.

If you still insist on washing wool at home and want to protect it from pilling and oil residue, you can either use a front-loading washer or put the blanket in a bathtub of warm water. Squeeze some Woolite (a detergent specifically designed for washing wool) into the water, then let the wool blanket soak for 30 minutes to an hour. Then launder it with mild detergent. The same techniques can be used to wash a wool blanket approximately once a month.

How Do You Wash Wool Blankets?

Cleaning wool blankets may seem like a chore, but it’s important to keep your blankets clean and last as long as possible. Having your wool blanket dry-cleaned professionally will do the trick!

Wool blankets should always be washed after each use to prevent dirt, bacteria, and oils from becoming embedded in the fabric. This will also keep them breathable and help them last for decades.

Although washing wool does open up the tiny pores of wool fibers – which can make them prone to form pills if not dried properly – it is still a better alternative than washing with harsh detergents or placing in the hot dryer which would shrink your blanket.

you can wash your wool blanket by following these tips

Front-Loaded Machine

Wool blankets can be washed using a front-loading washing machine with Woolite as the detergent. Do not use hot water. Cold water is best, but warm water will also do. Skip the dryer and allow your blanket to air dry in the shade.

Soaking

Fill up a sink or bathtub with warm or cold water, then add detergent and soak your blanket for about 30 minutes or so before washing as it allows for better cleaning without damaging the fibers of the wool blanket. You can soak for longer if you want to make sure all of the dirt is out of your wool blanket before washing it clean.

Use Mild Detergent

After the soaking process, launder the wool blanket in a front-loading washing machine with warm water and Woolite detergent (or add the detergent to cold or warm water before placing your blanket into the machine). You may want to double rinse your wool blanket if you are concerned about dirt being left behind by cleaning it this way.

Drying

Air dry your wool blanket either on a clothesline or by just opening up a place in your home that gets plenty of airflows. You can also tumble dry with warm heat on a low setting, or you can use your dryer to help with faster drying, but make sure the dryer temperature is not too high. Once the blanket is completely dry, it will feel fluffier and softer than before you washed it.

Fabric Enhancer

If you want your wool blanket to smell fresh and clean, add scent to your clean wool blanket using Liquid Fabric Enhancer in Fresh Scent before drying. that leaves you down and wool blankets smelling fresh and clean, never heavy or sticky. The liquid fabric enhancer goes into cloth washers easily and quickly, so there’s no mixing required. You can also dry clean your wool blankets to help ensure that they last for years to come.

Storage

It is best if your blanket is flat and on a wooden or plastic shelf with no other objects touching them. It’s also important that the fabric of the blanket be fully supported with no sagging in either the center or the ends of the blanket. This will help prevent pilling, which is caused by too much weight on top of your wool blanket. If you find your wool blankets piling up, it may help to stuff them into a pillowcase so they don’t sag at their center.

As a general rule, wool blankets should be packed away after every three to four uses, and for best results, never be washed more than once a year.

Wool blankets – like other natural fibers – are prone to pilling in areas that are repeatedly exposed to heat and cold. One easy way to prevent pilling is to store a wool blanket flat when not being used. This will also help prevent the fabric of your wool blanket from becoming loose or skewed over time.

How To Wash Merino Wool Blanket?

Merino wool blankets are a lovely luxury and they are very inviting, you can definitely wash your wool blanket on a gentle/delicate cycle in a front-loading machine. Make sure that you use cold water and wool soap or neutral detergent for delicate items.

Merino Wool blankets are made to repel dust moths and it won’t damage the fibers of the blanket, but the chemicals from the moth repellents may not be very healthy for humans to inhale, so I would recommend using scent-free wool soap or a similar product that doesn’t have chemicals in it. The most important thing is to make sure your blanket stays in water for as long as possible; 30 minutes to an hour is best. This will allow it to rinse thoroughly.

After your blanket has finished in the machine, remove it immediately and allow it to air-dry. Resist the urge to wring out your wool blanket as this can cause damage. We recommend hanging your wool blanket up to dry or letting it dry flat on a surface with plenty of room for it to spread out. If you use a drying rack, put some paper towels down between each layer of wool blanket so that they don’t push each other apart during drying.

Merino Wool blankets should be kept in a cool, dry place, with plenty of airflow. This can be in a basket or box, hung on a wall or draped over the back of a sofa. They should definitely be stored flat so they don’t become misshapen.

Why Does Wool Get Smaller When Washed?

Wool shrinks when it is washed because of the heat and pressure used in the washing machine. While it isn’t shrinkage in the way we think of typical fabrics – wool only shrinks about 3% to 5% if put in a dryer – it does affect the blanket size. As a general rule, the more you wash your wool blanket the smaller it gets, so hang it to dry as much as possible.

As discussed above, when you wash a wool blanket it will shrink. To ensure that your wool blanket still fits after being washed, avoid washing it for long periods or using high heat settings. It is also important to avoid using fabric softener or dry cleaning in conjunction with your wool blanket because not only do these processes damage the materials in your blanket but they also reduce its ability to absorb moisture when you are sleeping and will therefore cause your body to feel very hot.

What To Do If Blanket Gets Shrunk After Wash?

Like any other fiber, wool will shrink slightly if washed in hot water. You can minimize this by washing your wool blankets at a low temperature or by hand-sanding the blanket after washing to remove any loose threads. If you find that your blanket is too long for your bed and you want to put it back on the floor, it’s best to iron the edges down so that they will be nice and smooth when it’s on the bed.

If you notice that as soon as you unzip your wool blanket from its hanger, it shrinks down almost immediately, then another option is to steam-line the seams at home. To do this, find a flat surface with holes in it (a board on top of a hanger works great) and simply place your wool blanket on top. 

Then, using your iron to have the steam function turned on, set the temperature to high and put a book or something heavy on top of the blanket to make sure it stays in place. Once you have done this for about a minute, check to see if any fibers have pulled away from the seam. If so, repeat the process until all of the fibers are back in place.

Make sure to place an ironing mat between your iron and wool blanket so that you don’t leave behind any unwanted residue from your iron’s previous use.

Why Does Wool Smell After Washing?

Wool can sometimes have a strong odor after washing it, but this is more often the result of dirty wool blankets than anything else.

Washing a wool blanket is like giving it a quick sponge bath. The more you wash your blanket, the less of an odor you will have left behind. As mentioned above, if your wool blanket was previously worn or contaminated with other fabrics or cleaners such as shampoos and hair spray, avoid washing your blanket for long periods or using hot water to clean it.

How Do You Clean A Smelly Wool Blanket?

Wool blankets are naturally free of odors and will not retain stains, but there are a few interesting options for removing odors outside of washing the wool blanket.

Using a product such as White Vinegar is a great way to eliminate odors in your wool blanket. To apply it to your wool blanket, simply put a small amount in the hot water you are using for cleaning and let it sit for about 10 minutes. 

Once cool, use a soft brush to remove any excess liquid and you’re ready for bed! If you notice that the vinegar has left behind an unpleasant odor on your wool blanket, simply make sure to wash it with Woolite or similar detergent before using it again.

Another option for removing odors is using baking soda. Simply put a small amount of baking soda into a hot water bath with your wool blanket and let it sit for about 10 minutes, then wash it as you normally would. If you find the smell of baking soda coming through once your wool blanket is dry, simply wash it again with Woolite or similar detergent before using it again.

FAQ about Washing A Wool Blanket

Can I Put A Wool Blanket In The Washing Machine?

Some people love to put wool blankets in the washing machine, but it is not recommended. Wool blankets are very delicate and should be washed by hand. The only exception is if you choose to take your blanket to a professional cleaner to be professionally washed as this will ensure that they are cleaned carefully and completely.

Are Wool Blankets Safe For Children?

Wool blankets are great for children because they are warm, gentle on the skin, and easily washable by the family. However, if you have young children who have sharp fingernails or small hands, avoid using wool blankets that have been previously worn or even been in contact with other fabrics or cleaners such as shampoos and hair spray.

How Do You Dry Wool?

When it comes to drying your wool blanket, you have a few options. You can hang wool on a clothesline or over a rod in your closet, but if you want even faster results, lay the wet wool blanket out on an easy chair or couch so that it can dry faster. It’s also possible to throw your wet wool blanket into the dryer for about 10 minutes to help speed up the drying process.

Does Washing Machine Ruin Wool?

You can wash wool in a washing machine, but you must use wool-specific detergents to prevent the fabric from shrinking, felting, or becoming matted. The gentle spin cycle of the machine should take care of any lint that comes from the blanket, so you won’t need to take out any lint traps.

Final Thoughts

There’s no better way to wake up from a wool blanket than with a warm and soft one. You can use your wool blanket in dozens of ways – including keeping your favorite books and magazines handy for reading – and you will soon fall in love with it for its ability to keep you warm, as well as its beautiful design.

In addition to these wonderful benefits, wool blankets are also a great investment. With proper care, you will be able to enjoy your wool blanket for many years to come.

Check out our FAQ section for answers to many of the most common questions which have been asked about wool blankets or leave a comment below to ask your own question.


SOURCE

  1. Survivalist – Cleaning Wool Blankets.
  2. Homesteading – Washing a wool blanket?
  3. Moneysavingexpert – 100% wool blankets…washing?
  4. Anandtech – Washing a (Mostly) Wool Blanket – Dry Clean?

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