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How Frequently Should You Wash Your Mattress Protector?

Washing a Mattress Protector

Your mattress cover has an important job. It absorbs sweat and stains, keeps dust, dust mites, and bed bugs from settling into your mattress, and can extend the overall life of your bed by up to 10 years, helping you better protect your investment.   Keep reading to learn how often to wash a mattress protector.

To provide the best mattress protection possible, your mattress protector should be cared for regularly.

In this article, we’re going to discuss why you need a mattress protector, how often to wash a mattress protector, and finally, how to wash a mattress protector in the first place.

Table of Contents

Do You Really Need a Mattress Protector?

Heck yes.

A mattress protector is one of the absolute best ways to protect your mattress on a nightly basis. And given that the annual expenditure on mattresses in the US has risen by over 50% since 2011, there’s never been a better time to start investing in protection for your mattress.

But did you know that a mattress protector can also be the key to getting a more comfortable night’s sleep?

It’s true.

Certain mattress protectors (not to be confused with mattress toppers) can actually help regulate the temperature of your mattress, helping you cut down on night sweats and waking up clammy or overheated.

Beyond that, a mattress protector also helps prevent allergens from irritating your eyes, nose, and throat. For instance, a mattress protector can stop dust mites, which feast on your dead skin cells, from claiming your mattress as their home.

And if you’re like one of the 20 million Americans that suffer from allergies to these microscopic pests, a mattress protector can mean the difference between coughing, sneezing, and wheezing all night and finally getting a good night’s rest.

There are plenty of other signs you need a mattress protector too.

Lady sleeping comfortable

Can You Wash a Mattress Protector?

You sure can!

Most quality mattress protectors make washing your mattress protector as easy as cleaning your regular sheets.

In general, that means you can pop it right into your washer and dryer without thinking much of it.

However, that’s not the optimal strategy for all protectors.

And if you want to ensure your mattress protector lasts for years to come, there are some rules to follow.

How Do You Wash a Protective Mattress Cover?

Now that we know how often to wash a mattress protector, it’s time to figure out how to clean a mattress pad that protects your bed.

Just as you should follow specific instructions for proper mattress care, you’ll need to stick to proper guidelines to maximize the life of your mattress cover.

  • Launder it as soon as you take it out of the package before putting it on a bed to eliminate odors and soften the material.
  • Wash it in cold or lukewarm water on the gentle cycle. Hot water can weaken waterproofing materials and make mattress protection less effective.
  • Use non-bleach, mild detergent. Harsh chemicals in cleaners can damage the plastic membrane or the binding material.
  • Tumble dry on low heat in the dryer to protect vinyl backing – or even hang dry them the old fashion way outside.
  • Never dry clean a mattress protector since it can’t tolerate extreme heat.

Bed Bugs under magnifying glass

When Should You Wash Mattress Protectors?

First and foremost, let’s settle the issue of how often wash a mattress protector. A good rule of thumb for ultimate mattress protection is to wash the mattress cover once a month.

Many people cover their beds with a mattress protector and simply forget all about it. After all, it’s there to protect the mattress, so why take it off at all?

However, the truth is that the mattress cover itself needs to be washed too. As you and your partner rest more and more on your mattress protector, body fluids like sweat spills and other liquids will likely go straight through your sheets and end up on your mattress protector.

The longer it goes unwashed, the more these can all accumulate. And that will do more than compromise the protective qualities of the mattress cover. It can also dirty the clean sheets you put on it week after week—leading to issues with breathability, hygiene, and overall comfort.

On top of that, not knowing how often to wash a mattress protector or how to wash a mattress protector can lead to it becoming less effective over time. And that means you’ll have to replace it more often.

How Often Do I Wash A Mattress Protector (Exceptions)

The once per month rule is a great rule of thumb. However, there are always going to be some exceptions to the rule.

For instance, if any of the following apply, you may want to consider a more frequent washing schedule:

  • You suffer from allergies. An allergy to dust mites, pollen, or even your pet’s dander will make you more sensitive to the things that settle into your mattress cover, so you may need to wash it every other week so you can breathe more comfortably in bed.
  • It’s on a guest bed. If no one is sleeping in the bed regularly, there aren’t as many oils threatening to stain the mattress protector. You won’t have to wash it every month, but you’ll still have to wash it every few months since it’s likely to collect dust.
  • There’s been a big spill. Any time a liquid (other than water) goes through your sheets, you’ll need to wash the mattress cover right away to prevent mildew and bacteria from growing.

“Bed bugs hatchlings are so small they can pass through a stitch-hole in a mattress.” Pest World

Mattress sheets drying on a line

When Should I Replace a Mattress Protector?

Obviously, if you see visible signs of damage (worn areas, holes, or tatters), it’s time to replace your mattress protector.

That being said, you should also plan on regularly replacing your mattress protector even if you don’t see signs of damage. This is because not all damage is immediately visible. And replacing your mattress protector every 1 to 2 years will ensure your mattress stays fully protected.

The Beloit Mattress Company Offers a Large Variety of Mattress Protectors to Suit Your Needs

Your mattress is a big investment, so it pays to put a protective layer between your sheets and your bed. Bedwetting accidents, dust mites, mildew, and even bed bugs don’t stand a chance when you follow proper mattress care.

Here are just a few of the mattress protectors we offer online and in our mattress stores:

For Mattress Accessories and More, Visit a Beloit Mattress Store Near You!

We love to teach customers about proper mattress care in order to get the most out of their investment, so if you have any questions about mattress protection or want to learn about any of our products, come to a location near you!

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