I have a down-filled comforter that clearly states, “dry clean only.” Is there any way I can avoid the dry cleaners and do it myself?

– Laundry Lady

Dear Laundry Lady,

The good news is that you can wash a down-filled duvet. However, follow these specific steps for success.

1. Only ever wash in a front-loading washing machine — never a top-loading machine, as the agitator in a top-loading machine will damage it.

2. Use a quarter the amount of soap, because soap is difficult to remove from this kind of garment. You can always wash a second time if needed.

 

3. When you put the duvet in the dryer you will need some tennis balls in a sock, which will bounce around to help break up the feather clumps within the duvet.

4. Do not use the auto dry feature on the dryer. Instead, use the timer and leave the duvet in for a long time, as the feathers take time to dry. You may think the duvet is dry to the touch but remember the feathers! I have left my duvet in the dryer for easily an hour.

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