Q&ACategory: Home and FamilyCan you wash pillows?
Ruth asked 8 years ago

Do you have any ideas or suggestions as to what to do with any dated sleeping bed pillows which might possibly have dust mites? Just put them in the garbage as what I have been doing?

1 Answers
Sara Noel Staff answered 8 years ago

Personally, we have a lot of allergy issues at our house, so I would toss them. Consider this: Ten percent of the weight of a two year old pillow can be composed of dead mites and their droppings.
With that said, if you don’t have allergies, you can wash your pillows and should wash your pillows. According to Environment Health and safety Online, Wash the sheets and blankets at least every two weeks. Wash your pillow every week or put a dust mite-proof cover on it and wash once per year. Your pillowcase goes over the dust mite cover. How hot is hot? The water used to wash your sheets and blankets should be at least 130°F (54°C). Set your washing machine to it’s hottest setting. If the water doesn’t seem to be coming out hot, you may want to check your hot water heater – you may not realize that most household hot water heaters have a knob that can adjust the temperature of the water it produces.
You can dry them, too. Ideally, you would add dryer balls such as Nellies to help keep the fiberfill more intact, but you can use tennis balls, too.
My machine doesn’t have an agitator. If your machine does have an agitator, I would try to place the pillows vertically, so they are less likely to wrap around the agitator. Wash using the gentle cycle.
To whiten the pillows, you can use the following mixture:
1 Cup laundry detergent
1/2 Cup washing soda or Borax
1 Cup dishwasher detergent, powdered such as Cascade
1 Cup bleach
You can fill your washer on the small wash setting and on the hottest setting of water and add the mixture. Add your pillows and then top it off with a pot of boiling water. The goal being to have the pillows just covered by the water.
Then use gentle cycle.
Hope this helps.