Electric Blanket washing tips and ideas

tropical_thoughtOctober 2, 2011

I know you can't wash and electric blanket in hot with a hot dryer. It will melt the wires. I was successful using one. I had to wash it in warm and line dry. It was working, but now I suspect it is making my allergies worse. Since I can't wash it in hot, this must mean I can't use one anymore. I like the way the heat melts away aches and pains after a workout. I wish they would invent an electric blanket for allergic sufferers. Does anyone have any ideas? All of my past blankets stopped working after one time in the dryer. If you use a low setting in the dryer, it won't kill the dust mites, and warm water won't kill dust mites nor will soap.

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tropical_thought

I am thinking about a giant heating pad made of plastic that folds like blanket, but you can wipe it down with a sponge. Someone please invent one so I can buy it.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 4:01PM
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dadoes

Honestly, I don't see how drying an electric blanket in a typical home dryer would melt the wires. Dryers get between 150F and 160F maximum, low temp is typically 135F. Electric blankets of course don't reach those temps during use, but I'd be afraid to use one if I suspected the internal wires couldn't withstand 150F without melting.

However, machine drying will continually bend and flex the wires which would lead to mechanical/physical fatigue and breakage.

For that reason, washing an electric blanket calls for soaking with absolute minimal agitation or tumbling. A woolens or silk cycle in a frontloader would be appropriate. My Calypso toploader does nicely, the woolens cycle is much more a spin-spray wash than agitation.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 4:54PM
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tropical_thought

All I know is each time I put them in the dryer, that was always the end of them, it could be melting or something else, but the end result is they won't work if you use water hot enough to kill the dust mites or a hot dryer. It might be what has been making my allergies really bad for a long time.
So, I am putting it away to see if there is any change. Obviously, I would rather keep using it, but I don't know how to kill the dust mites.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 7:53PM
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dadoes

Freezing kill dust mites. Put the blanket in your freezer for 24 hrs. Then wash it again to remove the residue of the dead mites.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 9:04PM
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sparky823

You might try putting the blanket under your fitted sheet, this way warmth would be to your back. Maybe less allergies since the sheet is over it? You can also buy heated mattress pads.

I have read on the ALL Free/Clear bottle that it says it gets rid of dust mites. Might try washing in that and I would think drying in the sun would also kill them??JMO

    Bookmark   October 3, 2011 at 2:04PM
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oregpsnow

Re: I am thinking about a giant heating pad made of plastic.....
They have them - waterbeds. They are warm, cozy and can be wiped down. Not really foldable, though. A pain in the neck to deal with, actually. I miss mine but I love my Sleep Number bed.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2011 at 7:35PM
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tropical_thought

I had a heated mattress pad once, but they have the same problem. They harbor dust mites, and can't be washed. I used to go thought electric blankets like there was no tomorrow. They always stopped working until I got very creative with the washing and drying of them.

I don't have a clothes line, so I put them over some lawn furniture outside on a sunny day. The problem is there are almost no sunny days in San Francisco, and how can one wash them in the winter season? People should know before buying them how very difficult they are to wash. They come with a guarantee but you have to mail them back to the company, so no one ever does that.

I can't have any carpets, fabric sofas or chairs, curtains, stuffed toys, throw pillows, or books. If you have books, those have to be a book case with glass doors. The stuffed toys also have to sealed away in plastic or glass display cases. My house was perfect, but for the electric blanket. Now, that I don't use it, my allergies are much better. So, it's worth it to take less allergy medication.

Curtains also have to washed all the time if one has them, just like the bedding.

Did you know water beds are a huge problem for allergies because they cause mold to grow? I find them too mushy to sleep on anyway.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2011 at 9:48AM
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vala55

There was an article in our local newspaper this morning about using mite proof pillow covers. It said especially with children because it can cause allergies and related problems. It said to wash or replace you pillows often and use the covers. In your case I would not use an elec blanket or heating pad. Just turn up the thermostat a bit and sleep with tights under your Pjs.

As far as a heating pad goes, my friend fell asleep with one under her back and she could barely move the next morning. Her doctor said she was lucky she didn't fuse the bones together permanently. They are very dangerous to sleep with.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2011 at 10:33AM
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tropical_thought

I did not know that, but I heard you can be burned in the middle of the night if you fall asleep on a heating pad. I noticed my LG front loader has a wool cycle, but it's warm/cold. I would not wash wool in warm, it will shrink a bit, but it may be a good cycle for the electric blanket, but I have given up using it, but for other people the woolen cycle may be good for electric blankets.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2011 at 8:23PM
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trinityklm

I have an electric mattress pad that can be washed. I wash it twice a year according to the manufacturer's instructions. I put it beneath a dust mite proof mattress pad that I wash every time I do sheets. Works great!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 10:48AM
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tropical_thought

That would work, I have my memory form under the dust mite proof mattress cover. Thanks

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 4:05PM
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dualref

We love our electric blankets but as others have found out they never seem to last more than a year or two, and even if they work after being washed, they are not as warm as they used to be.
I don't think the wires melt during washing, I think they are somewhat brittle and break during the wash / dry cycle.
But have you noticed over the years the wires have gotten thinner and thinner?

    Bookmark   October 6, 2011 at 2:10PM
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tropical_thought

Mine is now working fine. It is just a hot as ever, but I never put it in the dryer, if you do only use air fluff, no heat setting. You have dry it outside and you can only do this on a warm day. It won't fit on a clothes line, so I dry it over lawn furniture all spread out flat in the sun. The problem is people with dust allergies have to wash it weekly or so they say, and I don't think that is good. Ideally one should wash it as little as possible. But, I don't think it can last more then five years. Mine used to only last one washing when I was trying to dry it on low heat. It was not so bad to buy new ones, but lately the prices are like 100 dollars even a jc penny's so it pays to take care of it and make it last as long as possible.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2011 at 5:47PM
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tropical_thought

If you don't have an outdoor area, it can be really impossible to air dry the blanket. If you live where in snows, you can't wash it all winter. They are not very practical, but they feel so good when they are working. They really need to correct these problems and make one that can be washed and put in the dryer. The dryer get all the lint off and removes dust and dust mites.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2011 at 7:09PM
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tropical_thought

I found a tip here that you can put items that can not be washed in hot water in the freezer. My washer does not get hot enough with the water to kill the dust. I found the dryer really kills the dust mites and get the dust and lint off your clothes. Could one put an electric blanket in the freezer without damaging it? What about wool sweaters that can't take hot water and hot drying? Click here to the link to the freezer idea.

Here is a link that might be useful: dust mite website

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 10:59AM
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