How To Clean An Osprey Backpack: Cleaning and Maintenance Tips

How To Clean An Osprey Backpack

Osprey backpacks are tough and rough. These are used for outdoor adventures. Moreover, their fabrics can withstand wear and tear. But you should not wash them carelessly. Machine washing can damage your osprey bag.

It is recommended to wash them regularly to keep them in their top condition. But despite their specialized fabrics, the wrong way of washing can damage your osprey bag’s fabrics, zippers, mesh, and webbing. 

Therefore, here is a comprehensive discussion about the correct cleaning of an osprey bag

Cleaning The Osprey Bag

It is recommended to wash the osprey bag every time after use. It will avoid the formation of stubborn stains and the accumulation of dirt in the backpack.

Things Needed To Wash The Osprey Bag

  • A mild soap that includes dishwashing soap, mild detergent, hand soap, or Nikwax tech wash.
  • Gentle brush such as a toothbrush, laundress stain brush, washing cloth, or a soft sponge.
  • Baking soda or white vinegar for smell or mold removal.

Spot Cleaning

Spot Cleaning

Always start with cleaning only the spots that are dirty or have stains. To do this, empty all the compartments or pockets of your bag. Then, shake the bag firmly in the upside-down position. Ensure that everything is removed from the bag, even the small particles of dust or food.

Then, wet the brush or sponge with warm water and rub it on the stains. Remove all the spots through scrubbing. Rinse the bag to remove the extra water from it. Then, you can dry these areas by hanging them in the open air in a shady area.

Hand Washing

If spot cleaning is not enough to remove the dirt or stains from the bag, then wash the complete bag. Take a water tub or sink and fill it with warm water. If your bag has had some stubborn stains, add a few drops of mild detergent to the water.

Now, soak the bag completely in the water tub. You can use a washing sloth or a soft sponge to scrub the whole bag. This will clean your bag without damaging it. You should use the toothbrush to clean all the zippers and buckles. 

Before drying, rinse the bag to remove the detergent and extra water. Then, you can hang it in the shade or indoors.

Machine Washing

Although the manufacturers are against machine washing, if necessary, you can wash following the tips mentioned below. 

  • Put the bag in the mesh bag, pillow cover, or washing bag. 
  • Use cool water.
  • Keep the machine at a gentle cycle and slow spin.
  • Don’t dry the bag in the dryer. As recommended, hang the osprey bag in a shady area or indoors to dry.

Removing Mold 


Here are a few chemicals used for removing the mold from the osprey bags.

  • White vinegar
  • Mild dish soap
  • Oxygen bleach

Along with one of the chemicals mentioned above, you need a soft brush and gloves.

Wear the gloves and identify the moldy areas. Then, spray the mixture of white vinegar and water on these areas. Or you can use a washing cloth and dampen it with that solution. Scrub the moldy areas with that cloth gently until all the moldy spots are wiped out. 

After removing the mold from your bag, you can wash the whole bag using the hand wash method. To avoid mold formation in your bag again, try to keep it in direct sunlight for some time. 

Removing Smell

To remove the smell from your osprey bag, use baking soda. This is a natural odor absorber. 

Simply sprinkle the baking soda on the surfaces to trap the sweat and odors. Let the baking soda rest on these areas for almost 24 hours. It will not only remove odor but also give a pleasant smell. 

After the smell is no longer there, you can brush or rinse the baking soda powder from these areas. 


Maintenance of an osprey bag is necessary. For this, keep them in airy places and have a regular wash after every visit. Moreover, when washing, clean the interior and exterior of the backpack. 

Most importantly, read the care instructions carefully. Avoid the things that can damage your bag. As the osprey bags have a lot of zippers and compartments, clean them with a toothbrush. 

If you want to know the appropriate washing methods for Herschel’s backpack, you will find them here. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Put My Osprey Backpack In The Washing Machine?

You can put your osprey bag in the washing machine only when necessary. But it is not recommended. And the machine must be at slow spin and have cool water.  

How Do I Clean My Osprey Hydration Pack?

You can wash your osprey hydration pack by following the steps below. 

  • Soak the bag in a mixture of liquid soap and warm water. 
  • Then, scrub the interiors and exteriors of the complete pack using a soft brush or sponge. 
  • When you are done with scrubbing, rinse the bag completely with clean water. 

In this way, you can clean your osprey hydration pack. 

Can You Use Vinegar To Clean The Hydration Pack?

Yes, you can use vinegar or any other detergent, such as dish soap, lemon juice, or baking soda, to clean the hydration pack in small quantities.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top