Together with your tent and other camping materials, your sleeping bag is your reliable partner in your camping adventure. Like all other camping gear and equipment your camping pal deserves proper care and maintenance in order to maximize its purpose. From usage, storage, washing and drying, every backpacker should know how to take care of their sleeping bags.
In order for you to have the ultimate insulation capacity in your sleeping bag, it is proper for you to let it expand an hour before you go to sleep. Your sleeping bag surely has moisture and unwanted smell stored on it during the camping trip. It is but proper for you to let it dry under the sun and help your bag smells fresh again.
It is recommended that you choose a sleeping bag with excellent zipper system, an important feature present in quality bags. A sleeping bag with two zippers meeting at the middle has more chances of getting stuck so make sure you balance their workload. Use each zipper equally. You may use duct tape to seal broken zipper or patch a tear in your sleeping bag. To avoid these problems, choose a sleeping bag with anti-zipper snagging feature. Always check for actual customer reviews for these important features.
Sleeping bags are not required to be washed after each camping trip especially if they were just used in few days or were barely used. If washing is needed, always follow the directions provided by the manufacturer. It must be hand washed with mild soap in lukewarm water. As with ordinary clothes, rinse thoroughly and completely remove dirt and soap. Hang the bag to dry and shake it from time to time to remove the water faster. You may also get it dry cleaned by a professional who is familiar with down products.
Maintain your sleeping bag’s loft by storing it properly. Never roll up your wet sleeping bag in a stuff sack. Use only breathable and large stuff sack for your sleeping bag. Avoid compressing it as this will lose its loft easily. It is best to store your sleeping bags loosely on a shelf or just hang it by the loops at the foot like your clothes in a closet.