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Dust Mites

Eliminate Dust Mites from Your Laundry

Eliminate Dust Mites from Your Laundry

If you’re like me, you’d rather not think about dust mites. But the reality is, they’re everywhere. In our beds, carpets, and yes, even our laundry. It’s a common misconception that washing clothes eliminates these tiny pests. But does it really?

What are Dust Mites?

Dust mites are tiny, microscopic creatures that inhabit countless homes. They are part of the spider family and almost invisible to the naked eye, around a quarter to a third of a millimeter in size.

Dust mites feed on dead human skin cells we shed daily. Hence, they’re often found where we spend most of our time—our beds, carpets, and laundry. Contrary to common belief, clean homes can also be a breeding ground for these invisible pests. It’s not about how spick-and-span your surroundings are; it’s about dust mites’ primary menu item: skin flakes. And guess what? We’re constantly shedding them.

To further elaborate, dust mites thrive best in warm and humid conditions – typical characteristics of our homes. In conditions with high humidity and warmth, these creatures can reproduce quickly. This is alarming because dust mite allergy is a common condition.

Do you regularly have a runny nose, frequent sneezes, or itchy eyes? You might be allergic to dust mites. According to Allergy UK, up to 10 million dust mites and their droppings, which can trigger allergies, are in a typical mattress! But don’t fret—most of us share our homes with these creatures and don’t have any allergic reactions.

Think about this—if beds can harbor millions of these mites, what about our laundry? The following section will delve into dust mites’ presence in laundry and challenge the misconception that washing clothes can banish pests.

Dust Mites in Laundry

If you think that laundry is a safe zone from dust mites, you’re in for a surprise. Even as I look at my freshly laundered clothes, I’m painfully aware that they could potentially be teeming with these microscopic pests. It’s not just a hypothesis—there’s scientific fact behind it.

Dust mites are hardy creatures capable of surviving in clean laundry. One study from the University of Manchester in the UK found that a significant fraction of dust mites survive the washing process. Despite the detergents, rinsing, and mechanical action of the washing machine. Here’s a quick snapshot of their findings presented in a markdown list:

Presence of Dust Mites

  • Before Washing: 100%
  • After Washing: 97%
  • After Tumble Drying: 7%

That’s right: washing alone is not enough to banish dust mites completely. But don’t lose hope just yet—here comes the silver lining. The study also pointed out that tumble drying clothing and bed linens could significantly reduce their numbers by up to 93%.

The study’s findings clarify why dust mite allergies may persist despite regular, rigorous cleaning. They also potently remind us to clean our washing machines regularly.

It’s a well-documented fact that detergents cannot kill dust mites. They lack the necessary chemicals to do so. Instead, they can only dislodge mites from the fabric. But without high heat or freezing temperatures, these dislodged mites can easily find their way back onto our clothing and linens.

Have you ever noticed that your allergies tend to reduce during winter? That’s because dust mites, being cold-blooded, cannot survive in freezing temperatures. You can eliminate these microscopic pests effectively by putting infested items in the deep freeze for 24 hours. It’s a little unconventional, but who doesn’t love a clean, mite-free environment?

So, let’s remember that while our laundry is not a haven from dust mites, there are certainly effective ways to lessen their presence drastically. We can minimize these uninvited house guests by understanding these facts and implementing comprehensive laundering strategies. Will doing laundry ever be the same now that you know? Only time will tell.

Can Washing Clothes Get Rid of Dust Mites?

Based on what we’ve discovered, you might be itching to ask a pressing question: Can washing clothes eliminate these unwelcome houseguests? I’ll explain.

Contrary to popular belief, a simple cycle in the washing machine will only do the job partially. A study by the University of Manchester showed that a whopping 97% of dust mites survive a typical wash. These pesky critters are resilient, proving that washing alone does not eliminate them.

Let’s consider the role of detergents. Are they any better at slaying these tiny monsters? Unfortunately, no. While they can scrub off and dislodge dust mites from the fabric, they can’t kill them. The result is that the mites can be drained away with the rinse water, but many still cling to the laundry and go on living happily.

Dust Mite Survival Rate:

  • Washing: 97%
  • Detergents: N/A (dislodge mites but don’t kill)

So, what can you do if washing and detergents can’t get rid of dust mites? Don’t despair! There are still some effective strategies for managing these microscopic pests.

As stated earlier, tumble drying can significantly reduce the number of dust mites in laundry. By exposing them to high temperatures, we can wipe out up to 93% of the dust mite population. It’s a solution that’s both practical and easily incorporated into your regular laundry routine.

An alternative approach to controlling the dust mite population involves leveraging their surprising vulnerability to cold temperatures. Folding infested items for about 24 hours can significantly reduce the dust mite population.

Ultimately, dealing with dust mites in your laundry is about understanding their potential presence and implementing intelligent, effective strategies.

Tips for Eliminating Dust Mites from Laundry

Dealing with dust mites in your laundry can seem like quite the ordeal. Although detergents dislodge them, they don’t kill them. Thankfully, there are several tactics you can use to rid your laundry of these pesky pests effectively.

First, you can opt for dust mite sprays or essential oils before regular washing. Eucalyptus, peppermint, or clove oils are known to be effective against dust mites. However, using these oils directly can damage fabrics. So, it’s crucial to dilute them and follow the instructions provided.

Second, if possible, freeze your infested items for 24 hours. Dust mites can’t survive freezing temperatures, so this method effectively diminishes their numbers. You can place smaller items like stuffed toys or pillowcases in freezer bags and store them in your freezer for a day. This method is perfect for delicate garments that can’t handle the high heat of a tumble dryer.

Next, consider using a tumble dryer. Remember the study we referenced? It was shown that tumble drying can reduce dust mite numbers by a whopping 93%. That’s a huge difference. However, not all clothing items can withstand this procedure, so label and separate your laundry appropriately.

Finally, using dust mite-proof beddings and covers is a proactive way to minimize dust mite infestation. Most of these fabrics are designed to be impenetrable by dust mites, adding a solid barrier between you and the pesky pests.

By following these practical strategies, you’ll take a significant step in effectively managing dust mites in your laundry. Let’s focus on more critical insights on dust mite mitigation.


So there you have it. Tackling dust mites in your laundry doesn’t have to be a daunting task. You can effectively manage and prevent these pesky critters with a few strategic steps. It’s all about finding the best method for you, from using dust mite sprays and essential oils to freezing your infested items. Remember the power of your tumble dryer, too. And remember, prevention is critical. Dust mite-proof beddings and covers can be your first line of defense. So don’t wait for an infestation to happen; be proactive. Start implementing these strategies today and say goodbye to dust mites in your laundry.

Clotheslyne: A Professional Laundry Solution

For those who prefer professional laundry care, Clotheslyne provides an ideal solution. Through the app, you can hire Clotheslyners for expert laundry services, including washing, drying, and folding of clothes and bulky items.

Choosing Clotheslyne ensures your laundry is handled with care and expertise. It’s convenient for those who value their time and prefer professional laundry services.

To use Clotheslyne, download the iOS Apple App or Google Play Store Android app to schedule your laundry pick up.

You can also schedule your laundry pick up through our web portal.

Fill up a tall kitchen bag full of clothes. A Clotheslyner in your community will pick it up and deliver it back to you washed, dried, and folded in 48 hours. It’s that simple.

Got a question for us? Head over to our contact us page and make a custom request by email or by phone! We’re here to help.

FREE pickup and delivery laundry services for less than drop-off at your local laundromat!