Can You Wash Your Chacos In The Washing Machine?



Can You Wash Your Chacos In The Washing Machine

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Yes, you can wash your Chacos in a washing machine.

Chacos, the popular and durable outdoor sandals, are a go-to choice for adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts worldwide. As you wear them on your countless escapades, they are bound to accumulate dirt, grime, and odors. Keeping your Chacos clean not only enhances their appearance but also prolongs their lifespan. Many Chaco owners wonder whether it’s safe to toss their beloved sandals into the washing machine. In this article, we will explore the dos and don’ts of washing your Chacos in the washing machine, along with alternative washing methods to keep your Chacos fresh and ready for your next adventure.

Dos and don’ts of Wash Your Chacos in the Washing Machine


  • Check the care label: Before you decide to wash your Chacos in the washing machine, make sure to read the care label on your sandals. Some Chaco models may have specific cleaning instructions that could differ from others.
  • Remove loose debris: Before washing, remove any loose dirt, rocks, or debris from your Chacos. This will prevent the machine from getting clogged and ensure a more effective wash.
  • Use a gentle cycle: When washing your Chacos in the machine, always select a gentle or delicate cycle. This will minimize any potential damage to the straps or the overall structure of the sandals.
  • Use mild detergent: Stick to a mild detergent that is suitable for delicate fabrics. Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals, as they can cause discoloration or damage to the materials.
  • Wash with similar items: If you’re washing your Chacos with other items, make sure they are of similar colors and materials to avoid color bleeding or fabric damage.


  • Don’t use hot water: Hot water can cause the glue used in Chacos to soften, leading to potential delamination and structural issues. Stick to cold or lukewarm water for the wash.
  • Don’t use fabric softener: Fabric softeners can leave a residue on the Chacos, making them slippery and less effective on slippery terrains.
  • Don’t put Chacos in the dryer: Avoid using a dryer to dry your Chacos, as the high heat can warp the materials and distort their shape. Air-drying is the best method for preserving the sandals’ integrity.
  • Don’t wash leather Chacos in the machine: If you have leather Chacos, it’s best to avoid machine washing altogether. Instead, opt for gentle hand cleaning methods to maintain the leather’s quality.
  • Don’t force the straps: When washing Chacos with adjustable straps, avoid pulling or stretching them forcefully, as it can damage the buckles or cause unnecessary strain on the sandals.

Steps to Wash Your Chacos In The Washing Machine:

Step 1 Preparation:

Gather all your Chacos and remove any loose debris, dirt, or pebbles stuck in the soles or straps.

Step 2 Check the care label:

Refer to the care label for specific cleaning instructions. If machine washing is permitted, proceed with caution.

Step 3 Place in a mesh bag:

To protect your Chacos during the wash, place them inside a mesh laundry bag or a pillowcase with a knot tied at the opening. This will prevent any straps from tangling or getting caught in the washing machine’s agitator.

Step 4 Use mild detergent:

Add a small amount of mild detergent to the washing machine. Avoid using bleach or fabric softeners, as they can damage the materials.

Step 5 Select a gentle cycle:

Choose a gentle or delicate cycle on your washing machine. The ideal water temperature should be cold or lukewarm, as hot water can cause damage.

Step 6 Wash with similar items:

If washing with other items, ensure they are similar in color and fabric to avoid potential color bleeding or damage.

Step 7 Start the wash:

Begin the washing machine cycle, and allow it to complete the full cycle.

Step 5 Air dry:

Once the wash is complete, remove your Chacos from the mesh bag or pillowcase and let them air dry in a well-ventilated area. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight or high heat, as this may cause deformation.

Alternative Washing Methods

  1. Handwashing: For more delicate Chaco models or if you prefer a gentler approach, handwashing is a viable option. Fill a basin or bucket with lukewarm water and mild detergent, then gently scrub your Chacos using a soft brush or cloth. Rinse thoroughly and air dry.
  2. Spot cleaning: If only specific areas of your Chacos are dirty, spot cleaning can be effective. Use a mixture of water and mild detergent to gently clean the affected areas with a soft brush or cloth.
  3. Vinegar solution: To tackle odors, you can create a vinegar solution by mixing equal parts water and white vinegar. Wipe down your Chacos with this solution to neutralize odors and kill bacteria.
  4. Baking soda paste: For tough stains, mix baking soda with water to form a paste and apply it to the affected areas. Let it sit for a few minutes before gently scrubbing and rinsing.


Can I use a stain remover on my Chacos?

Answer: It’s best to avoid using harsh stain removers on your Chacos, as they can damage the materials. Stick to mild detergents and alternative cleaning methods.

How often should I wash my Chacos?

Answer: The frequency of washing depends on how often you wear your Chacos and the activities you engage in. As a general rule, wash them when they become visibly dirty or start to develop odors.

Can I wash my Chacos with other shoes?

Answer: While it’s possible to wash your Chacos with other shoes, it’s best to ensure that the materials and colors are compatible to avoid any potential damage.

Can I machine wash my leather Chacos on a gentle cycle?

Answer: No, it’s not recommended to machine wash leather Chacos, even on a gentle cycle. Hand cleaning with mild soap and water is a safer option for leather sandals.

How long does it take for Chacos to air dry?

Answer: The drying time for Chacos can vary depending on the climate and humidity levels. Generally, they may take several hours to a day to completely air dry. Avoid using artificial heat sources for drying.

Final Words

In conclusion, washing your Chacos in the washing machine can be a safe and effective way to keep them clean and ready for your next adventure. However, always check the care label and follow the dos and don’ts mentioned to prevent any damage. If you have leather Chacos or prefer a gentler approach, alternative washing methods like handwashing or spot cleaning are excellent options. By properly caring for your Chacos, you can ensure they remain durable and comfortable, supporting you on countless outdoor journeys.

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