Improperly cleaning a winter jacket will cause damage to the fibers of the coat and may even leave a musty odor. The thickness of the jacket and its filling create the cleaning problems. If it is soiled with something wet, the dirty particles can seep all the way through the layers of the jacket. Washing a winter jacket takes longer than washing a light jacket for the same reason, the water and detergent require extra time to soak through the jacket's layers.
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Things You'll Need
1 tsp. liquid dish detergent or gentle clothes detergent
Dryer or clothesline
Treat any stains on the jacket by putting a few drops of detergent on the spots and gently rubbing them into the fabric.
Set the washing machine's temperature according to the directions on the jacket's label and let it fill with water.
Pour either 1 tsp. of liquid dish detergent or a cap full of gentle fabric detergent into the water.
Put the jacket into the soapy water. Turn the washing machine off. If the jacket floats and does not settle into the water you may have to push it under the water.
Allow the jacket to soak in the soapy water for at least an hour. If the jacket it deeply soiled allow it to soak overnight.
Turn the washing machine on and let it finish running through its wash and rinse cycles.
Remove the jacket from the washer and hang in a place where air is circulating until it is completely dry, or place the jacket in the dryer on the cool setting and run the dryer. The dryer will probably have to run at least two times for the jacket to dry completely. Avoid excessive heat while drying to protect the fabric and the filling from damage.
Check the jacket's label for special directions before washing because not all fabrics have the same cleaning requirements.