Thursday 6 June 2013

How to take care of sleeping bag

Ok since we spent our money on our good camping gears, let's take a look how can we take care of them.
Let's talk about our sleeping bag first.

When you go camping, try to keep your sleeping bag clean and dry. Your sweat and dirty clothes, etc can ruin it's insulation power.

I know, you are going to say "Are you crazy? It's camping and I have no shower. How can I keep it clean?"

You could change your clothes before you go to bed. Try to use the clothes that cover all over your body such as pants, long sleeves shirt, socks, etc. Or you can try to use a sleeping bag liner which you can wash it when you come home.

If you are thinking about cleaning your bag, you should aware that every time you wash it, you risk your bag to tear and might decrease the loft. Dry cleaning is not recommended. Cleaning only the tiny spot that dirty is the best way to do instead of washing the whole bag.

If you want to wash the whole bag still, you can get a professionally laundered by REI. Then you know that your bag is safe.

If you want to wash it yourself, use a gentle, non-detergent soap such as Nikwax Down Wash 2.0 which is made for washing down and synthetic-filled items. Hand-washing in a bathtub. Use warm water with soap. Leave it soak for about 15 minutes. Then press out any water. Rise in cold water. And leave your bag sit for another 15 minutes. Drain and press out any water. Repeat until there is no more soap come out.

Air drying is the best way to dry your bag. You can use dryer but use very low heat or a no-heat setting. You have to keep checking your bag. If you add a few clean tennis balls when the bag is almost dry will help break up any clumps of insulation and help restore the loft.

After the trip, air out the bag inside-out for a few days. Make sure your bag dry. Store in a large cotton storage sack that usually comes with when you buy your sleeping bag.

Don't store your bag compressed in its stuff sack as this will eventually damage the fill. My husband and his best friend did not know about this for many years. Now when we come home, we never leave our sleeping bags in our compression stuff sacks anymore.

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