How to Clean an Electric Mattress Pad
Electric mattress pads are machine washable.
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Heated mattress pads ensure a warm bed at night. Heat coils, or wires, woven into the blanket warm up when you plug the pad into an outlet and turn it on. Proper washing methods take into account the delicate nature of these wires, since a damaged wire poses an electrical danger to the home and renders the pad useless. Fortunately, electric mattress pads are still machine washable, so it takes minimal effort to clean them for future use.
Turn the mattress pad control switch to the off position. Unplug the cord from the wall then detach the cord from the pad.
Inspect the mattress pad for exposed or broken wires. Pads with damaged wires pose a fire hazard and require replacement.
Set the washing machine dial to the gentle or delicate cycle and allow the machine to fill with lukewarm water. Add a mild laundry detergent in the amount recommended on the detergent label.
Place the pad in the machine and presoak it for 15 minutes. Turn the dial to the gentle or delicate cycle and wash for 2 minutes.
Move the dial to the drain and cold water rinse setting on the machine. Allow the blanket to spin dry in the machine.
Run the dryer empty on the low heat setting for 2 minutes to preheat the interior. Place the mattress pad inside.
Machine dry the mattress pad for 10 minutes. Lay the pad flat to finish drying or drape it over a clothesline. Allow it to air dry completely before replacing it on your bed and plugging it in.
How Often Do You Need to Wash Your Mattress Pad?
You do lay on it eight hours a night, after all.
There’s nothing that ruins the feeling of just-cleaned sheets like realizing that your protective mattress pad is looking a little. yellow. We all know you’re supposed to wash your sheets every one or two weeks, but what about this pesky thing under your sheets? Our expert is here to share her wisdom.
But first things first, when we say mattress pad, we mean a traditional protective covering like this. Pillowy toppers are a different story since they come in so many varieties (consult the care label for the best washing instructions), and the foam versions can’t be washed at all. You’ll want to replace your topper when they’re not comfortable or supportive anymore.
But here’s the scoop on mattress pads:
You should wash your mattress pad every couple months.
"It’s only necessary to wash your mattress pad several times per year," says Carolyn Forte, director of the Cleaning Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute. "Sheets generally take more wear and tear than a mattress pad which is why they are washed more often."
This makes sense: You lay directly on top of the sheets, so they’re the first line of defense against body oils and dust getting to your mattress. Your mattress pad bears of that brunt, too, but not quite as much.
Forte recommends following the care label for specific cleaning directions, but in general, most mattress pads can be machine-washed in warm water and tumbled on low to dry.
But there are some exceptions.
If you have allergies, or let your dog or cat sleep in your bed, you might need to clean your pad more often. Gauge how much you should increase the frequency by considering the severity of your symptoms or how much your pet sheds. By trial and error, you might find that it’s necessary to wash the pad as often as weekly.
And if you spill food or drink, notice a stain, or find that it’s stretched out, wash the pad immediately.
Earn bonus points if you clean your mattress while the protector is in the wash.
It’s not everyday you have a bare mattress, so Forte recommends using this time to vacuum up dust (sprinkle the mattress with a little baking soda first to absorb odors). You can also spot-treat any stains, or spray the mattress with Lysol to kill bacteria. Just allow it to dry fully before making the bed again.
How to clean a mattress pad
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Just because you don’t sleep directly on mattress pads doesn’t mean they don’t get dirty.
Between dust mites and dead skin, spilled food and drinks, bladder leaks (or worse), mattress pads collect some gross stuff. So how do we clean them? The fact is, since mattress pads come in an assortment of materials — cotton, plastic-backed, foam, egg crate, down — there is no universal way to do it. That’s why TODAY Home asked green-cleaning expert Leslie Reichert for advice on tackling this chore. Not only does she know the best way to clean, she keeps it eco-friendly.
How to clean a cotton mattress pad
"Most manufacturers recommend cleaning cotton mattress pads at least every two or three months, depending on use," said Reichert. "Always follow the instructions on the care label, but, as a general rule, machine wash on warm or cool using a mild detergent."
Tumble dry on the lowest temperature recommended, using wool or rubber dryer balls or a few tennis balls to keep the pad fluffy. If machine drying is not recommended, then air dry.
How to clean a vinyl-backed mattress pad
Always follow the instructions on the care label of the pad, but, in general, vinyl-backed mattress pads can be machine washed in cold or warm water on a gentle cycle using mild detergent. Never use bleach on these pads, cautions Reichert, as it may damage the backing. Also, to assure an equal distribution of laundry detergent, allow the machine to fill with water, add the detergent, swish to mix andthenadd the pad into it.
If machine drying is recommended, tumble dry on low heat only. High heat will damage the vinyl. Toss in a few dryer balls or tennis balls to help the pad dry more evenly.
If air drying is recommended, hang the pad outside on a clothesline. If you don’t have clothespins to fasten the pad to the clothesline, drape across the line with the vinyl side facing up. Once that side is dry, drape the pad across the line with the cotton side up.
To avoid odors, mold or mildew, make sure the pad is completely dry before putting it on the bed.
Yes, you CAN fold a fitted sheet neatly
How to clean a foam mattress pad
Be sure to follow manufacturer’s instructions before cleaning foam mattress pads because foam pads are more delicate than fabric versions. They can shred and tear in washing machines and melt when dried at high temperatures. "Your best bet is to spot clean them," Reichert said.
To spot clean, begin by vacuuming both sides of the pad. Next, clean stains with an enzyme-based cleaner, such as Oxi-Clean or a solution made from equal parts water, distilled white vinegar and lemon juice. To keep the stain from spreading, start applying cleaner on the outside of the stain and work in circles toward the center. Allow the cleaning solution to sit on the stain for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse by soaking a clean sponge in cool water and blotting water into the stained area. Remove water by blotting with a clean towel. Continue until most moisture is removed. Or, remove excess water using a wet/dry vacuum. Allow pad to air dry by laying it on a flat surface, turning occasionally so it can dry evenly.
If the entire pad needs to be cleaned, lightly spray with a solution of one part mild, low-sudsing detergent to two parts water, or use equal parts water, lemon juice and white vinegar. If extra cleaning power is needed, you can add an enzyme cleaner. Allow the solution to sit on the pad for 20-30 minutes. Rinse lightly in the tub or shower using a hand-held shower head. Squeeze — never wring out! — the extra water, or remove it by using a wet/dry vacuum. Lay the pad flat for several days, turning a couple of times a day, so it can dry evenly.
If you don’t have the space or time needed to dry a foam pad, consider spot cleaning or replacing the pad altogether.
How to clean an egg crate mattress topper
The first step to cleaning an egg crate is to vacuum it on both sides to remove dirt and debris. If the manufacturer’s care label indicates that the egg crate is machine washable, wash it only in a commercial or oversize washer because agitator-type machines may tear the foam, Reichert suggests. Use a gentle cycle and a small amount of mild detergent.
If machine washing is not an option, consider spot-cleaning the egg crate. Spray the stained areas with a solution made from equal parts water, distilled white vinegar and lemon juice. Allow it to sit for 15-20 minutes. Rinse the stained areas completely in the shower. Fold and press the egg crate or use a wet/dry vacuum to remove excess water.
Lay the egg crate on a dry, flat surface to dry. To prevent mold, mildew and odors, do not place egg crate on the bed until it is completely dry.
How to Wash an Electric Blanket
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Modern electric blankets can be safely washed and dried in standard residential washers and dryers. In fact, you should wash a new electric blanket in your washing machine before using it for the first time. It is important to use short, gentle washing cycles, and to make sure you only dry the blanket on low, removing it before it is fully dried. Finally, there are also a few common cleaning practices that should be avoided.
How to Wash and Dry a Waterproof Mattress Cover
How to Wash and Dry a Waterproof Mattress Cover
- 1 Sealy Tempur-Pedic Memory Foam Mattress Care Instructions
- 2 Does a Memory Foam Mattress Need a Protective Covering?
- 3 Use a Duvet Cover as a Blanket
- 4 Keep Mattress Covers on Beds
Waterproof mattress covers keep spills and leaks away from your bed, but they’re not impervious to getting dirty. Regularly wash your mattress cover to get rid of dirt and odor. Most waterproof covers have a cloth top and vinyl backing, so they’re typically safe to clean in the washing machine.
Waterproof Mattress Cover Care
Launder your waterproof mattress cover in the washing machine in cold or warm water, on a gentle or delicate setting. Use a bleach-free laundry detergent — bleach can damage the waterproof backing of some covers. After washing, tumble-dry the cover on a low-heat setting. It’s safe to dry the cover with other items, such as sheets or clothing. Don’t use high heat; doing so damages the vinyl. Do not iron the cover or have it dry cleaned. If your waterproof mattress cover is new, wash it before using it for the first time. Laundering helps remove packaging odors and softens the cover.