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How To Wash A Down Alternative Comforters

How to clean a down alternative comforter
How to clean a down alternative comforter

Table of Contents

Down alternative comforters are generally very low maintenance. If they don’t have stains, you only need to wash them once a year. And it is easier to clean down alternative comforters at home than cleaning a down comforter. However, you still need to be careful to preserve them for a lifetime.

In this article, we have shared how to clean down alternative comforters.

Before moving to the process, let’s quickly see what a down alternative comforter. Because some people don’t have a clear knowledge of this aspect. If you are also confused about what type of comforter you own, this will help you.

What Is A Down Alternative Comforter

Filling inside a down alternative comforter
Filling inside a down alternative comforter

All comforters have a filling inside them, and they are distinguished on the basis of this filling only. Mainly, there are two types of comforters: Down & Down Alternative comforters:

Down comforters are filled up with soft undercoats of birds. Whereas, down alternative comforters are filled with a polyester microfiber material to imitate the natural softness of down comforters.

These are relatively cheap and easy to maintain. Also, they are good for people allergic to down fillings and those who are not willing to purchase animal-based products.

Along with all these things these comforters are easy to clean at home. While frequent machine wash is not recommended for down comforters, you can easily clean down alternative comforters in your regular machine.

Pro tip: Keep comforters fresh

To avoid a wash cycle or a dry cleaner visit, you can freshen a down comforter. For this, you should have a place to lay down the comforter under direct sunlight. Make sure the place does not attract excessive dirt, dust or human passage (to avoid the risk of stains). Let the comforter stay in the sun for 2-3 hours, flip the sides after 1 hour. Direct exposure to sunlight will remove odours which will make the comforter fresh. It will also act as a disinfectant for the comforter.

Things To Do Before You Wash A Down Alternative Comforter

  • Check the care label: Just like garments, pieces of bedding also come with a manufacturer’s guide. Don’t forget to check the care label before you wash a down the alternative comforter at home. Even though most of these comforters can be washed in a machine, there might be some precautions like “no harsh detergent”, “no bleach”, etc. mentioned on the care label. 
  • Repair the cuts & tears: Make sure you check the whole comforter for cuts and tears before you clean. Because water will directly seep through tiny holes, cuts and torn areas into the filling which is not good. Quickly mend such things with a thread and needle. 
  • Pre-treat stains: Remove stains from your comforter before putting them in the machine. We do not recommend using any homemade stain remover. You can simply use any stain removal spray to remove stains. Spray it directly on the stain and rub gently using a clean white microfiber cloth. Leave it for 10-15 minutes. Generally, the stain goes away on its own. If there is any residue left, you can move to clean the whole comforter. The residue will get away during the machine wash. In case the stain still persists, you can visit drycleaners. They have special chemicals to treat specific stains. Hence, they can treat the stains without causing any damage to your comforters.
  • Gather everything you will need: Here are the things that you will need to wash a down alternative comforter:
  • Stain remover
  • Detergent
  • Soft-bristled brush
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Wool dryer balls
  • Tennis balls
  • Drying  racks
  • Clothesline

Steps To Wash A Down Alternative Comforter At Home

Washing a down alternative comforter
Washing a down alternative comforter

Load the washer

Put the comforter in your washer tub. Try to spread it as much as you can so that it doesn’t get crumpled. Do not add any other clothes to the washer. Comforters are already large in size. If you will add more clothes there will be no space left for them to move inside the washer. It will leave suds in the comforter and it will not get cleaned properly.

It is always better to wash a down alternative comforter in front-loading machines. Mainly because they are more spacious and assert less agitation. Nonetheless, if you don’t have it at home, you can prefer a top-loading washer without a center agitator. Otherwise you can prefer sending comforters to your nearest dry cleaners as well.

Add laundry detergent and fabric softener/ vinegar

Do not use a harsh detergent on a comforter, you can easily find a mild laundry detergent in the retail stores near you or on online websites. Pour 1-2 tablespoons of powder detergent or 10 ml of liquid detergent into the dispenser.

Then add either 10 ml of fabric softener or 10 ml of white distilled vinegar to the fabric softener dispenser. It is important to keep the comforter soft after it gets cleaned.

In case your machine does not have separate dispensers you can add detergent directly to the water in the washer tub and swish it with your hands. Similarly, you can add vinegar or fabric softener directly to the washer tub before the rinse cycle.

Take two socks, put two clean tennis balls inside these socks and tie the ends using a rubber band. Now, put these socks inside your washer. This will prevent the down alternative filling to accumulate in one place during a wash. It will also add extra agitation to dislodge dirt.

Set the ideal cycle and run the machine

Set your washing machine on a “delicate” or “gentle” wash cycle and run the machine. Once the cycle ends, open the lid of the machine and check whether there is any soapy residue in the comforter or not. In case you find some residue, run a rinse cycle with just water.

Dry your comforter

There are two ways of drying your wash a down alternative comforter. You can either use a clothes dryer machine or opt for line drying.

Take out the comforter from your washer and put it in a clean and dry tub. Now, take it to your clothesline or dryer rack. Hang it on the clothesline or lay it on a rack. You will need some help in doing this as comforters are generally long and when they are wet, they will be heavier to deal with alone. If you are drying it outside, make sure they don’t bear excessive dust or dirt. Leave them to dry for 4-5 hours and then flip the side. Keep repeating the process until the down comforter gets dry. It may take 2-5 days depending on the weather in your area. 

Here is how you can use a dryer machine

  • Put your wash a down-alternative comforter in the tub of the dryer machine. 
  • Spread it evenly inside the dryer tub just like you did while loading it in the washer tub. 
  • Put wool dryer balls or tennis balls tied in a sock.
  • Set your dryer on the lowest heat setting in your machine and run it. 
  • Stop the machine after 30 minutes. 
  • Take the comforter out and fluff it carefully with someone’s help. It will evenly distribute the filling inside.
  • Put it in the dryer again for 30 minutes and run it on the same settings.

Key Takeaway

How to clean a down alternative comforter
Clean down alternative comforter

To clean a down alternative comforter at home, you don’t have to stress yourself. These comforters are machine washable, hence, washing them at home will not cause any damage. You just have to choose the most gentle cycle, stain remover, detergent and fabric softener while cleaning. Fabric softeners can also be replaced with white distilled vinegar.

We tried explaining the whole process precisely in this article, if you liked the content, feel free to read our other blogs. You will find a lot of useful information on laundry, dry cleaning, stain removal and care tips for clothes and upholstery.

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