How to Clean Nylon Luggage [Best Tips and Tricks]

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Written By Robert

Robert is passionate about traveling, technology, and reading books on his phone.

OK – so you’ve just come to the realization that your luggage is filthy and you want to learn how to clean nylon luggage. 

If that’s you, this article is going to get you through the entire process of removing dirt, grime, dust, and anything else that accumulates as a result of keeping your bag in your car’s trunk, closet, or otherwise.  

Cleaning tough stains on nylon (or even polyester) luggage may seem difficult, but it isn’t. 

You only need to follow the right procedure and use the right cleaning products. In fact, a majority of dirt on nylon luggage can be cleaned with soap and water. 

Follow the steps below for the entire process, or just below for an FAQ on cleaning luggage yourself. 

dirty rolling luggage

Cleaning Nylon Luggage in 10 Easy Steps

Cleaning the Interior

  1. Remove all items

The first thing to do when cleaning nylon luggage is to remove all items from the bag. Also, detach the removable pockets. Removing all items from the bag will make the cleaning process easy. Open the zipper of the luggage bag and shake it thoroughly. This will help get rid of loose particles in the bag.

  1. Vacuum the bag

Once you have removed all items from the bag, the next important process is vacuuming the bag. Vacuuming the nylon bag will help get rid of dust and larger particles that have stuck on the bag. A hand-vacuum is highly recommended for this job but any other standard vacuum can also do a good job. Don’t forget to vacuum inside the pockets.

  1. Clean the removable pockets

Wash the liners or pockets according to the manufacturer’s instructions. For instance, if the manufacturer tag indicates the pocket is machine washable, then you can toss them in your washing machine then clean according to the instructions given by the manufacturer. If the manufacturer has specified that pockets should be hand-washed, fill the bucket with warm water and a small amount of recommended laundry detergent. Clean all pockets thoroughly then hang them outside to air dry.

  1. Clean the nylon lining

Wash the nylon lining with water and detergent. Use a damp washcloth and laundry detergent to clean the nylon. Note that the nylon fabric is very sensitive. So make sure that you clean it gently using a soft washcloth. For tough stains that cannot be removed by mild laundry detergent, apply baking soda and water using an old toothbrush.

  1. Clean hard plastic linings

Most people tend to forget to clean the hard plastic lining on their nylon luggage bags. This part can be cleaned easily using mild laundry detergent and mild cloth. Once you are done cleaning, dry the luggage bag immediately with a dry towel. This will help prevent watermarks from forming.

  1. Air-dry the luggage bag

Once you are done cleaning the interior, air dry the nylon luggage bag until it dries up completely. This will help to get rid of mildew and the smell caused by moisture.

scrubbing suitcase

Cleaning the Exterior

  1. Remove dirt and debris

Begin by removing dirt and dust from the luggage bag exterior using a cleaning brush. A hand vacuum cleaner is more effective, especially for larger luggage bags.

  1. Wash the exterior

Once you have removed all dirt, dust, and debris, clean the exterior with water and mild laundry detergent using a damp washcloth. For tough stains, using baking soda and water. Once you are done cleaning, dry the bag immediately using a hand dryer.

  1. Clean latches and zippers

Wash laches and zippers with warm soapy water and a damp washcloth. Make sure you rotate the wheel completely in order to remove all mud, dirt, and other debris stuck inside. Once you are done cleaning, dry them immediately to prevent moisture damage. If your nylon luggage bag has metal hardware on the outside, wash them using a scrubber or steel wool.

  1. Air dry your luggage bag

Once you are done cleaning your suitcase exterior, open it then hang it outside to air dry. This will help prevent bad smells and mildew caused by moisture.

damaged bag

Tips on how to protect your luggage bag from damage

Apply a fabric protector spray

One of the ways to protect and prolong your nylon luggage bag lifespan is by applying a fabric protector. The fabric protector will help protect your nylon luggage bag from stains and further damage. However, before you apply it, read the manufacturer’s instructions to see whether they allow you to use this product.

Apply lacquer on metal hardware

Besides protecting the nylon fabric from damage, you also need to protect metal hardware from scratches using a metal lacquer. This product will create a barrier that will protect your nylon luggage bag against scratch damage.

Always store your nylon luggage bag safely

How you store your nylon will determine how fast it will get dirty – hard luggage is less troublesome in this regard. If you want it to stay clean for long, you need to store it in a safe, clean place. Before storing your nylon luggage bag check the area thoroughly for musty odors leaks and mildew because they can damage your language bag.

Spray air freshener

Nylon luggage bags sometimes have a very strong smell. Spraying it with an air freshener will help keep it fresh all the time by removing unpleasant odors. Be careful not to spray it directly on the nylon fabric.

Frequently asked questions about cleaning nylon luggage

Can I dry clean my nylon luggage?

Yes, you can dry clean your nylon. However, to get the best result, it is recommended that you take it to a professional dry cleaning service. They have the right resources and skills and will deliver better results.

Can I clean my nylon luggage with vinegar and baking soda?

Yes, it is okay to clean your nylon luggage with baking soda and vinegar. They are very effective at removing tough stains that regular laundry detergent cannot remove. If you want to use vinegar or baking soda, below are simple steps to follow.

Sprinkle dry baking soda on the nylon bag then spread it with an old toothbrush. The baking soda will kill bacteria, suck up grim and get rid of unpleasant odor.

Vacuum the entire nylon luggage to remove dirt, debris, dust, and baking soda.

Mix vinegar and water in the ratio of 1:2 then apply the mixture gently on the vinegar luggage. Apply the vinegar on the entire nylon luggage until it gets wet. Let it stay for about 10 minutes.

Clean the vinegar with a dry cloth then let it dry in an open space until the smell of vinegar disappears.

Can I machine wash nylon luggage?

Washing nylon luggage on a washing machine is not recommended. Also, the design of nylon luggage makes it impossible to fit in a washing machine. If you force it into the washing machine you will damage your nylon fabric.