A quality backpack is an investment that can last through years of travel and adventures with the utmost care. No matter the activity you use a backpack for, sweat and oils from your skin would enter into the shoulder straps and hip belt, making them dirty. Dirt, wear, and tear can take a general toll on backpacks if they are not regularly taken care of. Periodically wiping off dirt from it to minimize the dirt as it builds up can help maintain its durability. Food bits in the pockets can draw the attention of insects. And if your bushcraft backpack has started to smell, or it is filthy, there is the proper way of washing it, either by hand or using a washing machine.
Before You Wash Your Backpack
Before you take the steps of dipping your backpack in water or washing with soap, there are careful instructions below to follow before taking that step.
Firstly, open your bag and all where that has a zipper. The reason for this is to make sure there are no objects and rubbles in it. Give your backpack a good shake while turning it upside down to ensure all leftover dirt has been shaken off. If there are any stubborn rubbles or grits attached to the seams, the use of a vacuum cleaner brush would be the best next move in removing these stains. Many popular backpacks now have alloy frames installed in them. It is more advisable to remove them if they are easy to remove, to be able to wash your pack easily.
How to Wash a Backpack in a Washing Machine
When it comes to using a washing machine for washing a backpack, checking the label on the pack and following the instructions or recommendations is important. If you do not follow this step, and you go ahead to wash a backpack not meant to be washed in a machine, you can damage your backpack’s fabrics, accessories, and coatings. So checking the label should be the first step. And if the label says you can use a machine, these are the steps you should follow:
Cleaning and emptying the content in your pack is the first thing to do. Now leave all zips opened, and don’t forget to turn the pack inside out. Check if your backpack can fit the washing machine and has a lot of room to move around in. Use a small amount of soft detergent designed solely for backpacks, usually fragrance and dye-free. Using a harsh detergent can be harmful to the fabric of your backpack and damage the soft material. Use the gentle cycle on the machine while it is washing, using cold water. After washing, remove the backpack to let it dry naturally.
How to Hand Wash a Backpack
In using the manual way of washing, also check the label of a pack to know if it can be submerged in water or not.
Start by getting a large basin that can take the size of the backpack, or use a bathtub. Use a soft cleaning detergent in washing not to damage the backpack’s fabric. Fill your tub or basin with cold water. Never use hot water to wash as it can damage the color of your backpack. And if you can’t submerge your pack, spot cleaning is also very effective. Find a well-ventilated area in drying your backpack. When it is totally dry, without a sign of moisture left on it, then you can pack it in.
Backpacks have been designed uniquely to earn them good care and treatment. Maintain your pack by regular cleaning and washing as at when due to maintaining its quality and durability.