Sleeping Bags – Care

Storage and stuff sacks

Your sleeping bag is delivered in a stuff sack as this is easiest way to transport it. However, it should not be stored in its stuff sack long-term as this compresses the fill material and may cause damage. Hang the bag in your wardrobe over a large hanger, in the storage bag which came with your sleeping bag, an old pillow slip or flat under your bed.

When putting your sleeping bag in its stuff sack, do as its name suggests! Don’t roll or fold it, simply stuff it in with your fist, pushing it down to the bottom of the sack. This allows the fill to settle in pockets rather than being squashed flat.

Be careful not to place excessive force on the compression straps. If the bag is compressed too much, the small feather content can be forced through the sleeping bag’s shell. This fill leakage won’t affect the performance of the bag; it is more a nuisance or cosmetic problem. However, storing your bag in a highly compressed state for long periods will permanently damage the fill material, resulting in an inferior performance.

Cleaning your sleeping bag

Washing a sleeping bag can be a daunting process. However, your bag will perform better for longer if it is kept clean. There are two ways to do this:

Use a professional

This is the easiest way to get your bag clean. One Planet don’t just make the bags, we look after them, too. Send your dirty, bedraggled bag to us and it will come back fresh, clean and fluffy. Too easy! Contact One Planet by email or phone for further details on our services.

If using another professional service, ensure they specialise in cleaning sleeping bags. (If you’re sending in a down bag, they should also be experts in handling down.)

Down – wash it by hand

  • Fill a bath with enough warm water to cover your sleeping bag and add a small amount of non-detergent soap. (Soaps designed for washing down products are available.) Be very gentle with your bag when it is laden with water and do not lift it clear of the water.
  • Gently massage the bag, pressing down with your open hands, until the fill material is saturated
  • Leave to soak for one to four hours, depending on the dirtiness of the bag. Drain the water from the bath, add fresh, warm water and repeat the gentle massage.
  • Continue draining and adding fresh, warm water until all the suds have been removed and the water is clear.
  • Drain the bath and, without moving the bag, press water out of the fill material until it has all gone and the bag is merely damp.
  • Fold the damp bag into a bundle so you can manage it by yourself, without letting it sag.
  • Lay the bag in a clean, shady spot and open it out.
  • Regularly massage and separate the drying fill material until an even loft is achieved.
  • In cold, wet or humid weather, the bag may be placed in a small room with a heat source to aid drying. Remember to separate the fill material regularly.
  • A sleeping bag with natural fill will take several days to dry completely. It is important to have good air flow around the bag, and it should be moved regularly to assist the drying process.
  • Finish the process by tumble-drying the sleeping bag on low in a commercial sized tumble drier. It is very important to keep the temperature low so you don’t cook your bag.

Synthetic – DIY washing

You will need a front-loading washing machine to wash your synthetic sleeping bag carefully. A machine designed for domestic use is fine for washing a single sleeping bag.

  • Clean out the machine’s soap dispenser to remove any soap residue.
  • Undo the zippers on the sleeping bag.
  • Load your sleeping bag into the machine.
  • Use a light non-toxic soap, free of chemicals. Baby shampoo/soap is ideal.
  • Select a normal wash at 40°C with a spin of 700 RPM and an extra rinse cycle.
  • Carefully remove your bag from the washing machine.
  • Dry the sleeping bag on a line in the shade – it will take a few days.
  • Finish the process by tumble-drying your bag for 30 minutes on low heat. (It is very important to keep the temperature low – otherwise you will bake your bag!)