How to Wash a Fleece Blanket

There are various ways to clean and wash a fleece blanket. First of all, fleece is generally made of polyester fabric. This fabric is used because of its water-resistant qualities. Therefore the care of the blanket must not interfere with these properties. Although this product can be machine washed and dried, failure to wash or dry properly may make the blanket less useful.

Collect cleaning supplies

The fleece blanket’s polyester content determines what materials will need to clean it properly. If just lightly soiled, then a gentle detergent like Ivory Snow, Dreft, or Woollight can be used. All-purpose detergents should not be used as they may interfere with the desired properties of the fibers in the fabric.

Bleach and fabric softeners should also not be used because they are equally destructive to the water-resistance of the fabric. White vinegar can be used to soften if desired. Similar items of color and material weight should be gathered to wash with the fleece blanket.

Visually inspect and pretreat

Next, visually inspect the blanket. If any dried-on stains or spots are found, they will need to be pretreated. If dried on mud or food is found, try to scrape any excess off carefully. Then take a small amount of total soap needed and a little bit of water and gently pretreat the stain.

Washing the blanket

After pretreating, one needs to determine whether one wants to hand or machine wash. Although either process is equally acceptable, because of the bulk of a blanket, machine washing may be more desirable. It is essential to set the dial to the gentle cycle.

The other cycles are too harsh and will damage the blanket in the long run. The water temperature should be cool or medium in both the wash and rinse cycle. Medium temperature is most desired as it ensures proper dissolving of powdered detergents. It is essential to not use bleach or fabric softener in with the fleece blanket. A small amount of white vinegar can be used for a fabric softener substitute.

How to Wash a Fleece Blanket

Set the washer to the gentle cycle, and for the size load that will be needed. Before the items to be washed are added to the machine, add the mild laundry detergent to the water. Make sure to wait till it is agitated a little so that the detergent is dissolved before adding the items to be washed.

When adding items to the washer, make sure to distribute evenly in the machine and not to fill the washer with too many items. This step ensures a thoroughly clean load. If one wishes, a second rinse can be used to assure that all detergent has been removed from the fibers of the blanket. If desired, white vinegar can be used in the final rinse to help soften the fibers.


When the fleece blanket has been thoroughly washed and rinsed, remove it from the washer. It is advisable to visually inspect the blanket at this stage to make sure no stains are remaining on it. If still stained, either line dries or pretreat again and repeat the cleaning process with the blanket only.

Once it passes a visual inspection, it determines whether the fleece blanket is to be line dried or dried in the dryer on low heat or air fluff cycle. One can add a couple of clean tennis balls in with the blanket to be dried to help ensure even drying. While you’re here, why don’t you read our article on cleaning carpets?