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#1
Old 09-09-2009, 05:46 PM
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Comforter says "Dry clean only" BS?

Dammit!

I bought this thing and I didn't notice the tag said "DCO" on the label until I got home. But even then I thought "No biggie, 10 bucks, tops, at the dry cleaners."

Boy was I wrong! They want $42 to clean that with the pillow cases! I only paid $99 for the comforter itself.

Inspecting the comforter, I really don't see whats so special about the material that it has to be dry cleaned.

So what do you guys think? Should I just wash it myself?

Or comply with the label?
#2
Old 09-09-2009, 06:13 PM
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How much do you care about it? If you'd be upset if it got ruined, or if you'd rather spend $42 to dry clean it than whatever it'd take to replace it, suck it up and dry clean it. If you're not especially attached to it, give it a shot in the washing machine.

What's it made of?
#3
Old 09-09-2009, 06:16 PM
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Does it have stains? Or is is just a little smelly?

OK, then carefully hand wash any small stains. Then spray lightly with Febreeze, etc, toss in the dryer at the lowest heat with a couple of extra dryer sheets.
#4
Old 09-09-2009, 06:35 PM
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For a musty smell you can lay it in a sunny place for a couple days and the smell will be gone.

I'm sure it says dry clean because something can get messed up. They put those labels there for a reason. Wash it if you can chance it being ruined.

Last edited by Harmonious Discord; 09-09-2009 at 06:35 PM.
#5
Old 09-09-2009, 06:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DianaG View Post
How much do you care about it? If you'd be upset if it got ruined, or if you'd rather spend $42 to dry clean it than whatever it'd take to replace it, suck it up and dry clean it. If you're not especially attached to it, give it a shot in the washing machine.

What's it made of?

Face: 65% polyester, 35% cotton
Back: 100% polyester

Thanks for the suggestions so far guys.
#6
Old 09-09-2009, 06:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHAKES View Post
So what do you guys think?
That means it's..... dirty!
#7
Old 09-09-2009, 06:44 PM
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This is why you should use a duvet cover, which you can remove and do like normal laundry. If you use a cover, you can go years at a time without cleaning the comforter itself.
#8
Old 09-09-2009, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twickster View Post
This is why you should use a duvet cover, which you can remove and do like normal laundry. If you use a cover, you can go years at a time without cleaning the comforter itself.
This is exactly what I came in to say! Last time the hubby and I bought a comforter, we found a good deal on it, but it still cost us a little chunk of change. I insisted we buy a cover for it before we even went home. If you want a good deal on a comforter cover/duvet cover, check overstock.com.

My suggestion would be to shell out the $$ to get it dry-cleaned this time, but before you use it again, get a cover for it. I'd also suggest you look for one that buttons/ties. If you buy one that you just "slip" the comforter into, like a huge pillowcase, it's a PITA. Only MHO, of course.
#9
Old 09-09-2009, 07:06 PM
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It also depends on how big it is - I have a small summer comforter that I wash regularly. I won't be washing our huge winter comforter, though (or I might possibly go to a laundromat and use their heavy-duty machine).

While we're talking about comforters, one of the best things I've ever done with a washable comforter was sew all the layers together in many spots throughout the comforter. That way with repeated washings, all the stuffing has stayed in place and hasn't all migrated to the edges.

ETA: Using a top sheet also extends the life of your comforters, too.
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Last edited by Cat Whisperer; 09-09-2009 at 07:08 PM.
#10
Old 09-10-2009, 12:53 PM
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I have washed my comforters, and quilts in washing machines many times. They always come out fine. None of them are very expensive, so I would never pay that much do dry clean them.

I do recommend going to a laundromat, and using a large front loading machine, however. Anything that agitates or top loading could mess it up. Then just dry it on low, or partially dry it, and hang it in the sun to finish it off. FYI, The last time I used a large machine and washed and dried mine in a laundromat it cost me about $8 total.

**I used to be a Nanny for a couple in CA, I was a live in, and laundry was part of my job. I had to wrestle a duvet cover off and on their huge king sized down comforter once a week. It was nearly enough to make me quit that job!! It was a duvet cover that works like an old fashioned sandwich bag. You "slipped" the comforter in and then folded a flap over one end. Seriously, I bet I looked like Lucille Ball making that damn thing up every week!**
#11
Old 09-10-2009, 02:17 PM
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Polyester and cotton are machine washable. You should be fine.

Many washers will have a gentle cycle setting. If your washer has one, wash it on that setting.
#12
Old 09-10-2009, 03:14 PM
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There *might* be problems with the filling shifting and bunching if you wash it; a larger machine such as the laundromat, and/or tossing a few tennis balls into the dryer with it, might help that.

I was going to mention those home dry-cleaning kids (that use the dryer) but per here, it sounds like they don't do much in the way of real cleaning.

Anyway - I'd second what other posters have said - if you are willing to risk ruining the thing, you could try cleaning it at home, otherwise spend the 42 bucks once and get a duvet cover for the future.
#13
Old 09-10-2009, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAT=^..^= View Post
**I used to be a Nanny for a couple in CA, I was a live in, and laundry was part of my job. I had to wrestle a duvet cover off and on their huge king sized down comforter once a week. It was nearly enough to make me quit that job!! It was a duvet cover that works like an old fashioned sandwich bag. You "slipped" the comforter in and then folded a flap over one end. Seriously, I bet I looked like Lucille Ball making that damn thing up every week!**
This is why I recommended looking for the ones with buttons or ties.
Still. . .every week? Srsly?? What, didn't they use a top-sheet or what? If there's a top sheet between me and my duvet cover, why the hell would I think it needs to be washed every single week?
#14
Old 09-10-2009, 03:27 PM
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I have often washed all kinds of things in the machine that are labelled DCO. I cannot imagine spending $42 to clean a comforter. As mentioned, dangers are:
  • Shrinkage of material if you dry it too hot. So wash in cold water and dry on lowest setting or line dry.
  • Bunching of filling or stress on the material due to washing machine agitator. Means it's too big for your machine. If it won't fit into your washing machine without jamming it in, wash it in a front-loader at the laundromat.

Once I even accidentally got a pair of wool slacks in with my other clothes. It didn't hurt them but it took the structure out of them and was an effort to iron back to their original selves. However, my wife washed my knit cotton shirt with everything else and it came out of the dryer (!) shrunk by at least two sizes.
#15
Old 09-10-2009, 04:54 PM
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The main thing I could think of is if it has some embroidery on it. Sometimes they say to DCO so the embroidery won't pull out.
#16
Old 09-10-2009, 05:23 PM
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I was going to say, do what I do - rub any spots with a damp washcloth, with a bit of baby shampoo or some soap - but DON'T do this if it's a solid color. This could remove the color and leave a light patch - all my comforters are old, faded, and multicolored, so it doesn't matter. ... When new, I hauled my comforters twice a year, spring and fall, to the laundromat and stuffed them in the gigundo machine, on cold, delicate setting. Put them in the gigundo dryer (with some tennis balls/clean sneakers) just to get excess moisture out, and took them home to dry outside for as long as it took....

The thing is, and this may be why it says dry clean only -

The comforters lost their 'loft' and got much, much thinner, like ordinary quilts.

(did the same with Mr. S's winter parka once - it SAID it could be washed - but it came out much thinner and it wasn't warm any more, no air in the loft to hold in body heat.)
#17
Old 09-10-2009, 06:29 PM
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What do the tennis balls in the dryer do?
#18
Old 09-10-2009, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bordelond View Post
What do the tennis balls in the dryer do?
They declump the lumps.
#19
Old 09-10-2009, 07:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
They declump the lumps.
In short, they keep the comforter from rolling itself into a ball during the process of the dryer spinning it around.
#20
Old 09-10-2009, 08:32 PM
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The truth about dry cleaners is that they water wash almost everything except coats and silk shirts.
#21
Old 09-10-2009, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by norinew View Post
This is why I recommended looking for the ones with buttons or ties.
Still. . .every week? Srsly?? What, didn't they use a top-sheet or what? If there's a top sheet between me and my duvet cover, why the hell would I think it needs to be washed every single week?
They were either neat freaks, or they had longhaired cats or dogs which were allowed to lounge on the bed. Even shorthaired cats can shed an amazing amount, and the one medium hair cat that we had could really cover all available surfaces with her soft, silky fur.
#22
Old 09-10-2009, 11:34 PM
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Our two cats are currently sleeping on my bed - on my washable bed cover, that's on it just because of them. My shorthaired cat sheds enough each week to make a whole new cat, so everywhere they sleep gets a washable cover.
#23
Old 09-11-2009, 04:09 AM
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Originally Posted by CookingWithGas View Post
Once I even accidentally got a pair of wool slacks in with my other clothes. It didn't hurt them but it took the structure out of them and was an effort to iron back to their original selves.
Wow, you lucked out. I've only owned one wool sweater that I liked (lamb's wool, so it wasn't itchy) and while home for the weekend from college, I decided to wash it. For god only knows what reason, my dad, who never does anything with laundry, decided to be helpful and put things in the dryer before I got to the machine. The sweater would have fit a four-year-old when it came out

This thread is interesting. I never gave any thought to the possiblity that a comforter might be dry-clean only, but I'll keep the advice here in mind the next time I need to replace one.
#24
Old 09-11-2009, 11:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHAKES View Post
Face: 65% polyester, 35% cotton
Back: 100% polyester

Thanks for the suggestions so far guys.
What's the stuffing/batting made of?

A polyester/cotton blend of that sort should be able to survive regular washing and drying, although too high a dryer setting might melt the polyester, so use some caution with that, if you choose to try it.

You will be taking some risk, of course, by running it through regular wash. It is up to you whether or not you wish to try that.
#25
Old 09-11-2009, 11:53 PM
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Regular polyester/cotton blends of clothing do OK in the dryer, but if I put in a comforter, I would not set it on high heat, better to run it a couple of cycles on warm. And open the door and shift it so the wet parts get exposed.

Beware though that if it's big and puffedy, it may come out of all this much flatter and thinner.
#26
Old 09-12-2009, 01:39 AM
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See here


Can I machine wash a dry clean only comforter?


and here

http://amitymama.com/vb/househol...comforter.html
#27
Old 09-12-2009, 03:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Zappa View Post
There *might* be problems with the filling shifting and bunching if you wash it; a larger machine such as the laundromat, and/or tossing a few tennis balls into the dryer with it, might help that.
That is correct. If you have a top load washer that uses a rotating paddle (virtually all of them) then you risk bunching up the center filling material. It's not coming un-bunched in the dryer. The filling has basically been torn internally from the stitching. It won't be completely ruined but you're not going to be very happy with it.

If you have a newer front loader the paddles on the sides are rounded and probably wont snag it. If you dont have a front loader go to a Laundromat that does.
#28
Old 09-12-2009, 08:01 AM
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I wash all my duvets by sticking them in the bathtub with some wool wash detergent and tromping them around like a vat of grapes. More work than sticking them in a washing machine ... but then you also don't have to run around looking for a laundromat with a big machine for it.
#29
Old 09-17-2009, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainiac View Post
The truth about dry cleaners is that they water wash almost everything except coats and silk shirts.
Nobody seems to be commenting on this. Is it true? Is it a bit misleading (as a "water wash" is still less destructive than a washing machine?)

Oh, and I'm surprised no one else has mentioned Dryell, or however you spell that.
#30
Old 09-17-2009, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Fuzzy Dunlop View Post
That means it's..... dirty!
Great Mitch Hedberg reference!
#31
Old 09-24-2016, 09:50 AM
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I know that this is a spam-necromanced thread, but
Quote:
Quoth Cat Whisperer:

While we're talking about comforters, one of the best things I've ever done with a washable comforter was sew all the layers together in many spots throughout the comforter. That way with repeated washings, all the stuffing has stayed in place and hasn't all migrated to the edges.
In other words, you turned your comforter into a quilt. The process of stitching together all of the layers is precisely what "quilting" is.
#32
Old 09-25-2016, 02:00 AM
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I washed many pounds of wool and mohair and angora rabbit fur using this method and never ended up with a felted mess:

Fill washer with cold water.
Add detergent, liquid is best.
Very carefully stuff the item into the washer.
Close lid and play on The Dope for a while.
Gently smoosh the item up and down a few times.
DO NOT AGITATE.
Spin out water. Spin out again.

Repeat for rinsing.

Lay it flat to dry. Or use dryer set on low heat with some tennis balls or a clean sneaker in it to break up the stuffing.

For wool sweaters or slacks, put them in a lingerie bag first
#33
Old 09-25-2016, 06:46 AM
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Try looking for a discount dry cleaner. The cheap-o chain I use cleans comforters for $19.99.
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