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Choosing and Caring For Liners
Ask Baz

Choosing and Caring For Liners

How do I care for my Sea to Summit Reactor, Adaptor, or Silk Liner?

  • Liners can be washed in a home washing machine using normal detergent (referred to as laundry 'soap'). Please note if using a top-loader washing machine, we would strongly suggest putting the liner inside a pillowcase to prevent the impeller (the spiral plastic rotating column in the drum of the machine) possibly snagging the drawcord.
  • Wash on the delicates or gentle cycle.
  • Do not use fabric softener. It will decrease the wicking performance of the fabric.
  • Air dry the liner. Drying the liner in a dryer will expose it to excessive heat that can damage the fabric.

Can I use the Reactor/Reactor Compact Plus/Reactor Extreme/Reactor Fleece Liner as a stand-alone sleeping bag?

If you are using the Reactor/Reactor Compact Plus/Reactor Extreme Liner/Reactor Fleece Liner as a stand-alone bag outdoors (rather than, say, in a hostel), the principal factor to be aware of is moving air. The knit fabric of the Reactors allows air to pass through quite easily, which in their normal use - inside a sleeping bag - helps ensure a comfortable sleeping environment. However, when used as a stand-alone bag, cooler air passing through from the outside will rob you of the warm layer of air you have generated inside the bag.

If you are inside a tent, this is less of a factor; if not, you may need something to cover the bag (perhaps a poncho, or a lightweight bag cover). As far as temperature is concerned, a rough 'rule of thumb' would still put the minimum air temperature at which you would remain comfortable at around 60F / 15C. If you use a lightweight bag cover over the liner (which prevents heat loss due to moving air) a reasonably comfortable temperature rating would be 50F / 10C. The Reactor Extreme would probably be your best bet for this kind of use.

How much additional temperature performance will a thermal liner add to a sleeping bag?

There is an extensive blog post which deals with the add-on thermal performance you can expect from a liner.

It helps to explain the factors involved in heat loss through different sleeping bag designs and through different sleeping pads - and it encourages you to think of a liner, a sleeping bag and a sleeping pad as a layered system. By doing so, you will have much greater chance of creating the right system for your use - and therefore getting a good night's sleep.


2 thoughts on “Choosing and Caring For Liners

  1. avatar Baz says:

    G’Day Trina – thanks for your question. It’s not essential to wash a Silk/Cotton Blend Liner before use, although may people choose to wash any bedding before first use. When you do wash the liner, you can machine wash it with standard laundry soap, but avoid fabric softeners which will reduce the wicking performance of the fabric. Air drying is preferable to machine-drying, but if you do dry the liner in a dryer, make sure it is on a cool setting. Warmer temperatures will damage the silk.


    The Sea to Summit team

  2. avatar Trina Berger says:

    Hi, I purchased the blended silk & cotton travel liner, is it recommended to wash it first before use? There are no guidelines or washing instruction in or on the packaging, I see the instructions on the website, but didnt know if it should be washed first. I like how compact it is, and the travel bag is nice
    Thank you.

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