Can You Wash Rubber Backed Curtains In Washing Machine?



Can You Wash Rubber Backed Curtains In Washing Machine

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Yes, rubber-backed curtains can be washed in a washing machine. However, it is important to follow the proper steps to avoid damaging the rubber backing.

Rubber-backed curtains are a practical and often stylish choice for your home. They provide privacy, block out light, and are relatively easy to maintain. However, like any other household item, they can get dirty and require cleaning from time to time. If you’ve been wondering whether you can toss those rubber-backed curtains into your washing machine, the answer is a resounding “Yes.” But before you start your laundry machine, there are important dos and don’ts to consider.

Dos and Don’ts of Wash Rubber Backed Curtains In Washing Machine


  • Check the Fabric Tag: Always begin by checking the fabric tag on your curtains. If it says “Dry Clean Only,” do not proceed with machine washing. Take them to a professional dry cleaner instead.
  • Remove Hooks and Fasteners: Before washing, take the time to remove any hooks, clips, or fasteners from the curtains. These can damage both the curtains and your washing machine.
  • Use Cold Water: When washing rubber-backed curtains, always use cold water. Hot water can cause the rubber backing to deteriorate, leading to cracks or peeling.
  • Mild Detergent Only: Choose a mild detergent without boosters or bleach. Harsh chemicals can harm the rubber backing and the curtain fabric.
  • Gentle Cycle: Opt for a gentle cycle on your washing machine or hand wash if you’re using a bathtub. Aggressive cycles can cause excessive friction that might damage the rubber backing.
  • Rinse Thoroughly: After washing, ensure you rinse the curtains thoroughly with cold water. This step helps remove all traces of detergent, preventing residue buildup.
  • Air Dry: The most crucial step is to hang the curtains to dry. Avoid putting them in the dryer, as the heat can cause the rubber backing to warp or melt.


  • Avoid Hot Water: Never use hot water when washing rubber-backed curtains, as it can damage the rubber backing.
  • Say No to Bleach: Steer clear of bleach or detergents with bleach additives. They can discolor the curtains and harm the rubber backing.
  • Skip Professional Cleaning if Tag Says So: If the fabric tag specifically states “Dry Clean Only,” respect it and don’t attempt machine washing.
  • Don’t Overload the Machine: Avoid overloading your washing machine with too many curtains. This can lead to uneven cleaning and potential damage.

Now that you’re aware of the dos and don’ts, let’s go over the steps to wash rubber-backed curtains in the washing machine.

Steps To Wash Rubber Backed Curtains In The Washing Machine:

Step 1

Prepare the Curtains: Start by removing any hooks, clips, or fasteners from your curtains.

Step 2

Check the Fabric Tag: Ensure that the fabric tag doesn’t indicate “Dry Clean Only.” If it does, take the curtains to a dry cleaner.

Step 3

Load the Machine: Place the curtains in the washing machine. Avoid overloading; it’s better to wash them in smaller batches if necessary.

Step 4

Add Cold Water: Fill the machine with cold water. Avoid hot water as it can damage the rubber backing.

Step 5

Add Mild Detergent: Pour a small amount of mild detergent into the detergent compartment. Avoid detergents with bleach or other harsh additives.

Step 6

Choose a Gentle Cycle: Select a gentle cycle on your washing machine. This cycle minimizes friction, reducing the risk of damage.

Step 7

Start the Machine: Begin the washing cycle and let it run its course.

Step 8

Rinse Thoroughly: Once the cycle is complete, rinse the curtains thoroughly with cold water to remove any remaining detergent.

Step 9

Air Dry: Hang the curtains to dry in a well-ventilated area. Do not use a dryer, as the heat can harm the rubber backing.

Alternative Washing Methods for Rubber Backed Curtains:

While using a washing machine is the most convenient way to clean rubber-backed curtains, there are alternative methods if you don’t have access to one or prefer a different approach:

  • Hand Washing: Fill a bathtub with cold water, add a mild detergent, and gently agitate the water. Submerge the curtains and hand wash them. Rinse thoroughly and hang to dry.
  • Spot Cleaning: For small stains or areas that require cleaning, you can use a cloth or sponge with a mixture of mild detergent and cold water. Be gentle and avoid scrubbing vigorously.
  • Steam Cleaning: If you have a garment steamer, you can use it to freshen up your curtains without submerging them in water. Hold the steamer a few inches away from the curtains and go over them section by section.


Can I use a fabric softener when washing rubber-backed curtains?

Answer: No, it’s best to avoid fabric softeners. They can leave a residue on the curtains and affect the rubber backing.

How often should I wash rubber-backed curtains?

Answer: The frequency of washing depends on factors like location and use. Generally, aim for at least once a year, or as needed if they become visibly dirty.

Can I iron rubber-backed curtains to remove wrinkles?

Answer: It’s not advisable to iron rubber-backed curtains, as the heat can damage the rubber backing. Instead, hang them up neatly, and wrinkles should naturally smooth out over time.

What should I do if the rubber backing starts to peel or crack?

Answer: Unfortunately, once the rubber backing starts to deteriorate, there’s no effective way to repair it. You may need to consider replacing the curtains.

Can I use a stain remover on rubber-backed curtains?

Answer: It’s best to avoid stain removers, as they can contain harsh chemicals that may damage the curtains. Stick to mild detergent and gentle cleaning methods.

Final Words:

Washing rubber-backed curtains in a washing machine is indeed possible, but it requires a delicate touch. Following the dos and don’ts, as well as the step-by-step guide we’ve provided, will help you keep your curtains clean and in excellent condition.

Remember to always check the fabric tag for specific care instructions and, when in doubt, opt for gentle methods to ensure the longevity of your curtains. With proper care, your rubber-backed curtains can continue to enhance your home for years to come.

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