How to Wash A Wetsuit in A Washing Machine?

How to Wash A Wetsuit in A Washing Machine
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There is nothing quite as fun as spending an entire day swimming in the sea or riding some waves underneath the sun.

Wetsuits are wonderful because they can keep you nice and warm even when the water temperatures begin to drop, but they can be a little bit difficult to look after.

Today we are going to be discussing how to wash a wetsuit in a washing machine and whether or not you really should.

Wetsuit Care

As we have already stated, wetsuits are tricky to look after. They can stretch easily, the neoprene can crease easily, and they can quickly start to smell like something that no human nose should ever have to smell. But, they can also last a lot longer when they are looked after properly, and proper care can quickly turn a wetsuit that only lasts for a single season into a wetsuit that can last for a handful of years.

Wetsuit Care

Here are two of the things that you need to take into consideration when you are thinking about washing your wetsuit:


Neoprene is the most important material inside of your wetsuit. It feels like a thick layer of rubbery foam, but that thick layer is directly responsible for keeping you warm when the water temperature is cool. It does this by trapping air inside of the wetsuit. Unfortunately, hot water is known to quickly destroy neoprene, causing it to lose a lot of flexibility.

This is something that you definitely need to take into consideration before you wash your wetsuit because of how important flexibility really is. Neoprene is often chosen for this quality. Would you be able to swim properly or do anything that you want to do in a stiff wetsuit?


Timing is of the essence when it comes to washing your wetsuit. You need to make sure that you clean it every single time that you use it and you can’t really afford to sit around and leave your wetsuit for a few days before you do. If you do this, then your wetsuit will quickly begin to smell foul and the materials will begin to suffer because of the prolonged exposure to salt water.

Wetsuits and Washing Machines

Before we even begin to talk about the topic of wetsuits and washing machines, you need to be aware of the fact that you should actually avoid using washing machines if you can.

Luckily, we also understand that not everyone can avoid using a washing machine to clean their wetsuit and it can be done as long as a few simple steps are followed. You just need to know that using a washing machine could affect the life expectancy of your wetsuit.

You should never put your wetsuit into a dryer. A dryer could quite literally destroy your wetsuit because of the way in which the constant tumbling would affect the seams. The last thing you need in your wetsuit is seams that leak whenever you enter the water as it simply would not be practical, nor would it keep your very warm.

If you do have to use a washer to clean your wetsuit, then here are a few simple steps that you can follow to make sure that your wetsuit stays safe:

Wetsuits and Washing Machines

Never use detergent. 

Detergent is far too strong and the neoprene in your wetsuit would never be able to stand up against it. It would very quickly become brittle and begin to lose some of the important qualities that we use neoprene for.  A cup full of wetsuit wash is the ideal cleanser to use in a washing machine.

Never use hot water. 

You should always use cold or lukewarm water when you are using your washing machine. You can do this by finding the lowest temperature possible.

Make sure that your washing machine does not enter a spin cycle. 

A spin cycle would seriously affect the life expectancy of your wetsuit because the spinning would damage all of the seams. Seams are incredibly important, and they are responsible for keeping you warm so you should never do anything that could adversely affect them.  Instead use the delicate option, or hand wash option on newer washing machines to gently wash your wetsuit.  Finally, never put other laundry in the same load as the wetsuit that could damage it while the washing machine is running.

As long as you follow these simple steps, your wetsuit should be safe in your washing machine. Remember that using a washing machine could will affect your wetsuit in an adverse way, but sometimes you don’t really have a choice.


Remember that it isn’t just about washing your wetsuit the right way; you also need to make sure that you dry it the right way. In order to do this, you should make sure that you never hang your wetsuit up in direct sunlight and that you hang it up by folding it in half. Hanging it up by the shoulders would just result in it stretching. You should also make sure that you keep turning it inside out while it is drying so that it does not begin to smell bad.

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