How to Clean a Camping Cot | Quick 5 Step Guide

Setting up your camping cot is not the only important thing to learn. You should also learn how to clean a camping cot. For many of us, this is even more important because cleanness is second to godliness.

If you don’t make cot cleaning a habit and care for it regularly, it will soon give way and get bad. It is that simple. The way you treat your equipment generally will determine how long they will last.

Enjoying a great night’s sleep while camping will depend on how clean your cot is. Several elements can cause your camping cot to be dirty such as rainfall and sunlight. In this post, we will take a look at how to got about cot cleaning.

You may also like:

Keeping Your Camping Cot Clean

A man lying on a camping cot in a tent with muddy shoes on

The easiest way of doing cot cleaning is, first of all, ensuring it doesn’t get dirty. You are probably thinking this is farfetched considering you will be outdoors when camping. And you’re right for thinking that way. After all, even when you carry out research and plan ahead, the weather can still go wrong.

Several elements of weather can affect your camp tent and ruin all that you place in it. Some of the major contributors are heavy rains and strong winds. This is why you need to have and use windbreakers and rain traps with you anytime you are going outdoors with your camping cots.

Since the weather is mostly unpredictable, it is always right to be strategic in pitching your tent. Find a great location to pitch your tent when camping. This way, even if the weather doesn’t go as planned, you are still safe, and your fabric won’t need much cleaning. Try to search for a tree or another area with sufficient shade to pitch your tent.

If none of these is available, then you may have to set up your tent anywhere you find. One thing you should remember is that it is important to protect yourself, your tent, and your cot from the weather.

Cleaning The Cot

Let’s be honest, the last thing you want to do when you get back from a trip is organizing and cleaning everything, but it is so important. Cleaning camping cots should really be done when you get back. The worst thing is to go off on a new trip, unpack your bed only to realize that it is still dirty from the trip before.

Trust me, I have experience.

Luckily, the cot cleaning process is quite simple and is without a need for any special expertise too.

Many of the camping cots around are designed using canvas material. What this implies is that you can make use of a similar procedure in cleaning the canvas cot that you use for furniture covered with canvas. Since you want to learn how to keep clean a camping cot properly, check out the following steps:

Step 1 – Clean outdoors

Where you do your cot cleaning is very important. We advise that you do the cot cleaning outdoors rather than indoors. The reason for this is that you are likely going to mess up your home if you clean indoors.

After using your cot at a campsite, it is likely going to harbor several dust and mud particles.

To get rid of these particles, we recommend that dust them off by beating against the cot lightly. Some of the mud may be stuck and so wouldn’t come off easily. For these particles, you may need a brush or damp cloth to wipe the mud off the materials. You should also determine if the cot upholstery is suitable for the use of a washing machine or not before you try the easy way out of cleaning.

Step 2 – Try cleaning only on dry days

Always make sure you choose a clear day to do your cot cleaning. Preferably, do it on a very sunny day so that your cot dries up in time.

Step 3 – Choose a solid surface

Before you begin to clean the camp cot, look for a flat solid surface where you can work. This will make it easy for you to go about the cleaning while avoiding any stability issues.

Step 4 – Scrub gently

Wet the canvas covering your cot with cold water then scrub it gently. You don’t need to use soap, but dish soap can be used as a mild detergent to make the cot cleaner without being tough on the cot materials. Cleaning with a gentle detergent will help you get any dry stubborn dirt clinging to the canvas off every time. You can dilute a mild detergent by adding a few drops of it to a cup of water.

A scrubbing brush is perfect for this part of the cot cleaning process and we advise that you begin at the dirtiest points when you use the brush for cleaning.

Note that cots are made of different materials. For polyester cots, I would recommend you use warm water and mild detergents or a fabric cleaner.

Step 5 – Dry

By now, the dirt on your canvas should be loose and suspended. Get some water to rinse the soap and dirt off. This will help you wipe off the suspended dirt. After doing this, allow the cot to air dry by placing it under direct sunlight. The sunlight should make the drying process faster but is dangerous to the color of the canvas. Constantly drying your cot in the sun can lead to the colors fading.

Note: It is also to check for any damage and repair your camping cot before packing away. As above, you don’t want to head off on a new trip only to find a tear in your canvas or a wonky leg on your first night.

Also, be careful as you wash your cots to avoid ingredients such as ammonia or bleach that could be too tough on your cot materials and compromise on their quality completely.

Taking Care of Other Camp Equipment

A camping bed on sand is not a great introduction to how to clean a camping cot

Now that you know how to clean your camping cot, you should learn how to care for the other camping equipment. Like we said earlier, if you don’t care for them, don’t expect them to last.

When you get back from a long camping trip, your last worry is cleaning or storing your equipment. This is why it is necessary to care for your camping gear to avoid unnecessary problems shortly after.

When you notice that your camping equipment is dirty, you should never pack them or put them away. The same goes for when equipment such as an air mattress, sleeping bag, or sleeping pad, among others are wet. Always make sure that you take the pain of wiping off the mud or dirt. When you do this, leave the equipment to dry before you put them away in storage.

The way you set up your tent at the campsite, you should do the same in your yard when you get home. This way, you are sure that all your equipment is clean and dry before you store them. If you don’t allow them to get dry, the danger is that they will develop mold a bad smell, mold, or mildew.

If you want to remove odor from your camping accessories such as an air mattress or cot, you can use a solution of baking soda, peroxide, and a mild detergent such as dish soap. The combination of the three ingredients is strong enough to eradicate any bad smell from your equipment.

Also, don’t forget that most of these pieces of equipment have metal parts and need good care. The metal frame will soon react with oxygen in the atmosphere and it will start to rust.

You can either lay your sleeping bags on the ground or air them on a hanger. After storing the bags for a while, take them out of the sack and air them.

This helps to protect their insulating capabilities. Take out batteries from any electronics that you aren’t using at the moment to avoid corrosion. However, ensure that the batteries aren’t too far away.

How to Clean a Camping Cot-Wrapping Up

Now you know how to clean a camping cot and how to make the cot more comfortable and care for other camp equipment. It isn’t as difficult as you always thought so you should do this as often as you camp. Remember that the way you treat your equipment determines how long it will last.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.