Cleaning a sleeping bag may not be as simple as stuffing it in a washing machine and then hanging it out to dry. In fact, you can permanently damage some sleeping bags by doing this. When it was time to purchase a new sleeping bag, I did some online research to find a sleeping bag that could be easily cleaned.
The sleeping bags that we had at the time were not machine washable. Assuming that all sleeping bags were not machine washable, I purchased a queen sized cotton doona and cotton cover which fitted perfectly in the swag when folded in half and were machine washable. Sleeping in between the two halves of the doona inside my swag, I had some wonderfully comfortable nights camping on a road trip between Brisbane and Tasmania, including sleeping soundly through a 30 knot breeze at Devonport on the edge of Bass Strait!
My wife, however, preferred the convenience of sleeping bags. Spotting a Roman swag bag in an edition of Australian 4WD Camping Guide magazine that was described as being machine washable, I purchased one for her, which she loves sleeping in in her (pink!) Burke & Wills Ironbark swag.
Figuring that there must be other machine washable sleeping bags on the market, I did some further research. It seems that the general school of thought is to hand wash sleeping bags or gentle machine wash in a front loader washing machine. However, I wanted to be sure so I visited several suppliers’ web sites. Unfortunately, few suppliers’ publicise their sleeping bag care and wash instructions. Following is the information that I was able to find.
- Blackwolf – No care or washing instructions listed on web site.
- Caribee – No care or washing instructions listed on web site.
- Coleman – Do not dry clean. Use gentle cycle on front loading washing machine or hand wash. Low heat tumble dry.
- Companion – Do not dry clean. Use gentle cycle on front loading washing machine or hand wash. Low heat tumble dry or air dry.
- Darche – No care or washing instructions listed on web site (see comments below).
- Roman – No care instructions listed on web site. My Roman swag bag says to use gentle cycle on front loading washing machine. Low heat tumble dry or air dry flat.
- Moondyne – All Moondyne sleeping bags can be washed using a gentle cycle in a front loading washing machine. Low heat tumble dry or air dry.
- Oztrail – No care or washing instructions listed on web site.
Note that this information is of a general nature. Please check the care instructions of your sleeping bag for full care instructions.
From my online research Coleman and Moondyne sleeping bags were top of the list for purchasing my own swag sleeping bag. I also add the Roman swag bag to my list because I know that it is machine washable. I ended up purchasing a Coleman Pilbara C0 sleeping bag.