Sometimes mistakes happen and from time to time you may throw something brand new in the wash but forget to take out the silica gel packet that came with it. What do you do if you've accidentally washed a silica gel packet?
If you've accidentally washed a silica gel packet remove it and any loose beads from the washing machine and rewash your load on a high temperature. To recharge your silica gel you can back them in the oven at 250°F (120°C) for 12 hours.
The good news is silica gel is unlikely to cause and harm to your washing machine or your load of washing. It's also unlikely to stain anything.
However it may cause the silica gel packet as well as your load of washing to feel a bit sticky or the beads may have broken out of the packet and become loose in your machine.
What To Do If You've Accidentally Washed a Silica Gel Packet
It's not a big deal if you've accidentally put on a load of washing and left a silica gel packet in there.
Generally speaking the packet won't even break and it's a simple task of removing the packet and rewashing your clothes if required.
However, if the packet has broken in the wash you'll want to make sure you remove any silica gel beads so they don't clog up your washing machine and break it.
Here are the steps to take if you've washed a silica gel packet.
Step 1: Remove Silica Gel Packet From The Wash
First and foremost you want to remove the packet from your wash.
I would personally take everything out of the wash and put it into a basket to see if there are any loose beads or if the packet has stayed in tact.
If it's just the packet then you can simply rewash your items if required, if the bag has broken and there are beads everywhere you'll need to take care of them first.
Step 2: Inspect For Loose Silica Beads and Remove
If the beads have come out of the bag you'll want to make sure you go through your washing as well as your washing machine and remove any loose beads.
If these are left they can clog up your machine and cause issues. So empty everything out then stick your head in the machine and pick up any little silica gel crystals that you find.
Giving your clothes a quick shake individually can do the trick to remove any beads stuck in the folds of your clothes.
Step 3: Rewash Your Items
Once you've removed all the silica gel from your washing machine and your clothes you may want to give your clothes an extra wash.
In some cases this won't be necessary and your clothes will be fine.
Other times your clothes will be a bit sticky and you'll need to put them through the wash again to remove the sticky ddetergent.
If they can handle high heat and you think they need it then run it on high heat, otherwise a cold wash should do the trick just fine.
Step 4: Recharge Your Silica Gel (Or Discard)
If you want to save and reuse your silica gel packets then you can recharge them easily by baking them in the oven on a medium temperature.
How To Recharge Your Silica Gel If You've Accidentally Washed It
If you've accidentally washed a silica gel packet you are able to fix it and bring it back to near original condition with not much effort.
Silica gel doesn't absorb water it “adsorbs” water. This means water does not dissolve into it but rather just sticks to its surface.
Silica gel is full of microscopic pores that trap moisture and if you've accidentally washed it then these pores will be full of water and also potentially full of washing detergent which is not ideal.
To fix this you'll want to remove all the moisture from your silica gel.
Step 1: Rinse It
Your silica gel pouch or packet likely has some detergent stuck in there so give it a good rinse to try and remove excess detergent.
If you want to be really serious then put it through the washing machine again but without any washing powder.
Step 2: Bake It In The Oven
Place your silica gel bags in the over at 250°F (120°C).
Bake for 12 hours (yes it takes this long at least) then leave them to cool and they should be ready to go.
Silica gel doesn't have an expiry date and so you can continue to use this method to recharge them whenever you need to.