QUICK GUIDE TO CARING FOR YOUR SLEEPING BAG
Now that you’ve spent your hard earned cash to buy sleeping bags for you and your family, there are a few ways you can look after it and make sure you get years of use out of it. Sleeping bags are one of those essentials that many people just don’t take enough good care of. They can be used when you forgot to pay the utility bills or when your comforter just won’t keep you warm enough on the bed during a cold snap, when someone comes to stay over and of course, they are always needed when you are camping and on an extended camping trip.
Get the most out of your sleeping bag by following these tips.
A SLEEPING BAG IS NOT FOR SLEEPING NAKED
Always wear something. Sleeping in your baby suit isn’t cool even if you feel like you wish you were cooler. If it is so hot you are sweating, then it is time to sleep on your sleeping bag and not on it. Sleeping bag liners are available but that’s an extra cost to keeping your sweat from your smelly bits getting all in your sleeping bag. Sleeping bags are not designed to be slept in naked even though those twin models are very tempting.
AIR OUT YOUR SLEEPING BAG EACH DAY
Get in the habit of putting your sleeping bag out to get air (and dry) when you get up in the morning. If you do this after each night you have slept in it, it won’t take long to dry. Even if it is raining, try and hang it up in your tent. I have a bit of VB cord that serves for this purpose. There will always be some amount of moisture you leave in the sleeping bag after sleeping in it, even while you are clothed. Let’s keep that sleeping bag smelling better for longer between washes by keeping it dry.
Break a zipper and you will really miss it. Now some zippers are better than others but all zippers will break if they are not treated properly. Take your time, never force your zippers and let them as last as long as your sleeping bag can.
WASH YOUR SLEEPING BAG
Front loading washing machines are the best to wash sleeping bags. A good wash will get any body odour out as well as giving your padding/insulation a good ruffling up. This is another reason why I like modern sleeping bags with quality synthetic filling. They are easy to wash and dry much faster than older sleeping bags, down sleeping bags are just too much work for me.
If you are going to use a dryer, check the manufacturer’s guidelines. It’s common sense not to blast your sleeping bag at extremely high temperatures in a drying machine.
If you can’t wash your sleeping bag right away when you get home, make sure you hang it out to get more air for some time before you pack it away. I recommend putting your sleeping bag in another plastic bag to make sure it has double protection when you are putting it away for some time. A plastic bag is only good as long as it is completely dry. If you live in a humid environment, make sure your sleeping bag’s outer bag allows your sleeping bag to breathe.
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