The Complete Heat Transfer Vinyl Washing Instructions Guide
Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV) is a printing method where your design is printed onto vinyl before being pressed and transferred onto your clothing or fabric using a heat press.
As you can understand, it’s important to know how to wash vinyl clothing properly, or you risk damaging the vinyl or having it crack or peel from the fabric.
The most common problems that people encounter when washing their heat transfer vinyl clothing is that they wash it in water that’s too hot or use harsh chemicals that can weaken the adhesive. Obviously, you don’t want this to happen, so keep reading to learn the right washing instructions for heat transfer vinyl clothing.
The complete guide to washing heat transfer vinyl clothing
Below is a step-by-step guide on how to wash and dry heat transfer vinyl clothing:
- The first, and arguably one of the most important steps when caring for heat transfer vinyl, is to make sure you don’t wash your fabric for at least 24 hours after applying the transfer.
This is because the vinyl needs time to settle into and stick to the fabric. It’s also advisable to give it a day or two before wearing the shirt after pressing it as well, as sweat or any other liquids could compromise the adhesive before it’s properly set.
- Avoid dry cleaning your clothing.
The harsh chemicals and cleaning methods used in dry cleaning can easily tarnish your heated transfer vinyl design.
- Make sure you wash your garments inside out.
This is to protect the vinyl transfer from the other clothes in the washing machine, as constant rubbing and irritating of the design from other fabrics can cause damage.
- Wash your clothes in cold or warm water only.
Washing your clothes in high-temperature water can compromise the adhesive layer keeping the vinyl on your fabric, meaning it could easily peel off or crack.
- Only use mild detergents.
Much like avoiding dry cleaning, you don’t want to use any harsh chemicals on your vinyl transfers. Stick to mild detergents only, and you’ll also want to avoid bleaches and fabric softeners as well.
- Hang dry where possible.
For best results, always hang dry your vinyl clothing. This will help you to reduce any wrinkles or cracks in the vinyl transfer. If you do need to tumble dry, always make sure it’s at a low heat to protect the adhesive.
- Finally, never iron directly onto your vinyl transfer.
The last piece of the heat transfer vinyl washing instructions puzzle. Never, ever iron directly on your vinyl print. Either turn the shirt inside out or use a protective cloth over the fabric, and always use a low heat with no steam. This will help you to avoid melting your vinyl transfer.
Things to avoid when washing heat transfer vinyl clothing
To make it extra easy for you to get the best results when washing, we’ve put together this handy list of DON’TS:
- DON’T use bleach, fabric softeners or harsh detergents
- DON’T iron directly onto your vinyl transfer
- DON’T dry clean
- DON’T wash or dry at high temperatures
- DON’T wash or wear for at least 24 – 48 hours after pressing your vinyl transfer
- DON’T let other garments rub on the vinyl transfer
By avoiding all of these DON’TS, you will help to protect your vinyl transfer and make sure that it continues to look as good as new for as long as possible.
PrintLocker offers long-lasting heat transfer vinyl printing options for you
As you can see, it’s important to follow the correct instructions when washing your heat transfer vinyl clothing if you want to ensure the durability of your vinyl design.
Of course, if you’re after high-quality heat transfer vinyl prints, you can’t go past PrintLocker. We are the top manufacturer of custom clothing in Sydney, Melbourne and right across Australia. The high quality of our HTV prints, and our wide range of custom clothing, including custom t-shirts, custom polo shirts and custom hoodies, make us the ideal choice for long-lasting custom vinyl prints in Australia.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you wash vinyl in the washing machine?
Yes, you can wash vinyl in the washing machine. You just need to ensure that you don’t use any harsh chemicals and only wash in low water temperatures.
How do you keep HTV from peeling after washing?
The best way to do this is to follow the above heat transfer vinyl washing instructions and ensure that you treat your vinyl clothing with great care. Don’t do anything that might weaken the adhesive of the vinyl and cause it to peel.