Your sleeping bag is your constant companion on all your overnight outdoor adventures. If treated right, a sleeping bag can last you for many years, and how you store it will make all the difference.
Storing it incorrectly will damage the insulation, no matter if its synthetic or down. Sleeping bags can be a significant investment, so treat yours right with the following tips, and keep it usable for the foreseeable future.
Let it breathe
To maintain the structure of the loft and air-trapping fibers that keep you warm, you need to store it outside of its stuff sack. This sack should only be used when traveling or backpacking, so let it unfurl and breathe whenever you’re at home. Also, as soon as you arrive at the campsite, let the bag out of the sack so that the fibers can unfurl and you can enjoy a warm and cozy evening.
That being said, you can use a storage bag to store your sleeping bag, as its a breathable and loose sack that allows for easy storage. This type of storage won’t deform or compress the insulating fibers as it provides more room. If you don’t have a storage bag, then try hanging it in a closet, making sure it’s not compressed.
Keep it fresh
Air out your bag as much as possible while camping or on the trail, as this will remove any moisture collected from your clothes or your body. Once you return home, hang the bag up for around 24 hours before placing it in storage, minding the weather if you hang it outside.
Keep it as clean as possible
Make sure your bag is dry and clean before you store it, and don’t get into it when you’re dirty, sweaty, or wet while on the trail. Another option to keep it clean is to use a sleeping bag liner, as it will be easier to wash.
It’s recommended that you wash your bag from time to time, and when it’s time to do so, follow the recommendations provided by the manufacturer. Sleeping bags usually can’t be dry cleaned or thrown into a top-loading washing machine, so hand wash whenever possible.
It’s not difficult to store your bag, but proper storage is essential to its lifespan. Protect your restful night’s sleep as well as your investment by airing out your bag and keeping it dry, uncompressed, and clean so it’s ready to use whenever you are!