Can You Vacuum Pack a Duvet? Plus 5 Storage Alternatives

Can You Vacuum Pack a Duvet

There are many times throughout the year when you may need to get that duvet packed away. For me, it’s mainly storage of spare duvets for guests or when we change over from winter/summer quilts. Duvets are very bulky items that take up a lot of storage. One option is to vacuum pack them into plastic storage bags, but is it okay to do this? 

Yes, you can vacuum pack your duvet (or pillows for that matter) but you’ll need a strong large plastic storage bag that can accommodate it. There is a caveat however, I would only recommend vacuum packing hollow fibre (synthetic) filled duvets as there is a risk that feather & down or goose down fillings may deteriorate when vacuum packed, so in this instance, an alternative may be required. 

It’s quite common to vacuum pack duvets but it may also be worth looking at some alternatives and I’ve summarised a few of these towards the end of this article. First of all though, its worth checking what filling is in your duvet before you get started.

What Type of Duvet Filling Do You Have?

In the past I would have vacuum packed any of my duvets, however, I’ve learnt that not all duvets should be treated equally. This basically comes down to the filling inside the duvet.

Duvets generally have three types of fillings. The cheapest filling is synthetic hollow fibre. This man-made material is as straightforward as it sounds: its basically strands of fibre that are hollow which helps trap air. A more expensive type of filling is duck feather and down, where both the duck feather and fine layers of down are used as a very effective filling. You can also get goose down duvets which are at least 90% goose down….and quite expensive.

So, what does this have to do with vacuum packing? Well, there is a risk that the feather quills that can be found in the feather filled duvets can snap and the duvet then becomes quite lumpy as the feathers have nothing to support them. Additionally, the problem when vacuum packing down is that the down starts to clump together and again, you end up with a bit of a lumpy duvet. 

In reality though, if you have a feather or down duvet you will probably get away with vacuum packing without noticing too much of a difference, it’s just worth being aware of the potential risks. If you duvet is quite old, ityou probably won’t mind to much anyway. With a hollow fibre filled duvet, you can vacuum pack with no issues.

Best Way to Vacuum Pack a Duvet

Thankfully, vacuum packing a duvet is pretty straightforward and you just need to follow these simple steps:

  1. If the duvet will be stored for a long time (for example, over summer or winter), then it will be worth seeing if it can be washed easily before packing. Just make sure it is fully dry before putting away.
  2. Get yourself some vacuum storage bags. And you’re going to need quite a big bag, especially if you are attempting to pack anything larger than a single duvet. Most vacuum storage bags come in sets of different sizes. Two of the most popular ones are Squeeze-Eezy set of 6 bags and the Spacesaver Jumbo (set of 2). The Space Saver bags measure 100x80cm and the Squeeze-Eezy ones are marginally smaller at 100x70cm (they are also cheaper).
  3. Fold the duvet and pack it into the bag. This might be a tight fit with a larger duvet so go for the biggest vacuum bags you can.
  4. Remove the air from the storage bags using a vacuum. Specific instructions will usually be on the bag or the packaging.
  5. Store the bags away. Thats it.

5 Duvet Storage Alternatives to Vacuum Packing

If you don’t fancy using vacuum storage bags for your duvet then you do have a number of other options:

  1. One of the simplest solutions is just to store in a plastic bin liner. Having done this myself, however, I can vouch that it’s not without its issues. First, the duvet (even if the bag is taped up) is exposed, not great if it’s stored up in the loft. Secondly, the bag often rips, again leaving the duvet open to dirt and dust.
  2. A step up from the plastic bin liner is to use one of those large Ikea blue bags. These are quite strong and can hold a lot of duvet. Again, though the duvet will be exposed to any dust, etc.
  3. If you want to get more “professional”, then another option is to buy a normal (non vaccum) duvet storage bag. You can usually pick up a large 105 litre bag, such as this one, for around £10. These bags allow you to pack up the duvet quite tightly (although not as much as a vacuum bag) and will do a decent job of protecting the duvet from any dust or damp. These bags are a great solution if you are concerned about storing your feather and down duvet in a vacuum bag.
  4. A different option is to use a spare suitcase. I tend to store a lot of out-of-season clothes in our suitcases but if you have one that’s empty then they are good for storage as the duvet is packed safely out of sight. This isn’t such a great idea though if you need to use your suitcases frequently as you’ll need to find somewhere again to store the duvet when the suitcase is in use.
  5. The final storage idea is a bit whacky. You could use the duvet as a mattress topper by simply placing in on the mattress and then fitting a sheet over it. This solves the problem of storage but might not be that comfortable over time as the duvet moves about. Not one I’ve tried to be honest.

Related Questions

What do I do if the vacuum storage bag splits? It’s not uncommon for the vacuum bags to split either in storage or when sucking out the air. Go for better quality bags that have stronger plastic and you should be okay. If you do get a tear in one of the bags then this can usually be fixed with good ol‘ duct tape.

How long can I keep a duvet stored in a vacuum bag? You can store a duvet in a vacuum storage back for as long as you want. Probably not advisable though and if you’re storing for a long time then at least once per year get the duvet out and check its not damp.

Do I need to do anything with the duvet when I take it out of the vacuum storage back? Not really, just give it a good shake to fluff back up again and have a quick look over it to check for any signs of damp or mould. If you remove it during the warmer months, then throw it over the washing line or airer to freshen it up.