Regarding materials, if it contains glass, plastic, or steel beads—or is a chunky knit weighted blanket—it is machine washable. However, if the fillers in the blanket are rice, beans, or grains, then dry cleaning is the best option.
Spot cleaning can help to remove spills and stains—and it’s often the method recommended by our experts. “We suggest spot cleaning your blanket when possible to save water and energy, and I highly recommend cold water or warm water—but not hot water—and a gentle soap,” Grojean says.
Also, Danielson recommends scrubbing the stain with an old rag or toothbrush, using gentle detergent or stain removers and warm water.
Mehrotra agrees, adding you could also use any type of brush with soft bristles, but warns against using fabric softeners and bleach, which could damage the product.
Sometimes, spot cleaning is not enough and you really need to clean the entire blanket. When you need to wash the weighted blanket in the machine, Grojean recommends washing the blanket alone, or with a very small load. (To be on the safe side, both Danielson and Mehrotra both advise washing it alone—especially if it’s a chunky knit weighted blanket.)
Be sure to use a gentle cycle since this wash cycle can to help to extend the weighted blanket’s lifespan and preserve its durability.
You should also use a gentle laundry detergent. “Choose one that does not contain harmful chemicals, like bleach, chlorine, and fabric softener, that can damage your blanket’s fabric, which can result in pilling or cause the blanket to lose its softness,” Danielson says.
Some people use a duvet cover on their weighted blanket. If you fall in this category, Grojean recommends removing it so the weighted blanket can be washed separately. Otherwise, you’ll run the risk of overfilling the machine.
How you dry your weighted blanket is just as important as how you wash it. “Most weighted blankets can be dried in the dryer on a low heat setting,” Grojean says. “Keep an eye on them because they may dry much faster than you’d expect as the weighted filling made of glass beads does not retain moisture.”
While Danielson agrees that you should use the low heat setting on the dryer, she also believes that air-drying is the safest bet—especially if the blanket has metal beads or chains. Be sure to wring out the excess water first.
But if you have a chunky knit weighted blanket, Mehrotra does not suggest hanging it to air dry, since this process may stretch out the loops. So, you should only tumble dry the piece on low.
So, how often should you launder your weighted blanket? “This is typically a matter of personal preference, and Danielson says the decision should be based on how heavily the blanket is used and if it has become soiled in any way. “Our recommendation is always to maintain hygiene with sleep or comfort products to keep your home fresh,” she says.
But if you need more specific guidance, Mehrotra offers the following advice. “If you use your weighted blanket daily, then we recommend washing it once per month.” However, if you only use it occasionally, Mehrotra says four to six times a year should be fine.