Tips for Cleaning Shoes in the Washer and Dryer

Do you have a pair of shoes that you love, but they’re just a little too dirty to wear in public? Or maybe you have a child who likes to go outside and play in the mud, and their shoes are caked with dirt. Are you tempted to try cleaning shoes in the washer and dryer, but you’re wondering: “can shoes go in a washing machine” and “will putting shoes in the dryer damage the dryer”? Let us teach you how to clean your shoes in the washer and dryer without damaging your appliances or clothes. So read on, and learn how to clean shoes and keep them looking great!

Guide to Cleaning Shoes in the Washer and Dryer

When learning how to wash shoes in a washing machine there are certain steps you can take to keep your shoes safe. Let’s start with the pre-wash steps below.

Steps Before Washing your Shoes in the Washer

  • Check the care label on your shoes. If they are made of delicate materials or have special instructions, hand washing may be the best option for you.
  • If your shoes are machine-washable, start by removing any laces, insoles, or other removable parts.
  • Give them a good once-over to remove any loose dirt or debris. You can use a toothbrush to help with this step.

Load Shoes Correctly

  • Place your shoes in a pillowcase or mesh wash bag to help protect them.
  • Add some older towels that are a similar color to the shoes to stop them from banging around.
  • If your shoes are particularly dirty, you may want to use a stain pre-treatment on them before cleaning shoes in the washer.
can shoes go in a washing machine

Select Optimal Washer Settings

  • Use a high-strength liquid detergent for optimal results.
  • If your shoes are particularly dirty, you may want to use a pre-treatment as well.
  • Set your washing machine to a delicate cycle with cold water.
  • After the cycle is complete, remove your shoes from the washer and check them for any remaining dirt or stains.

Dry Shoes Without Causing Damage

After cleaning shoes in the washer, can you put shoes in the dryer? In a pinch, yes, but the best way to dry your shoes is to hang them on a clothesline or drying rack. This will help them keep their shape and avoid any potential damage from the heat of a dryer. Wondering how long does it take for shoes to dry with this method? It can take a few hours depending on the temperature they are drying in. If you don’t have time you may consider using the dryer.

will putting shoes in the dryer damage the dryer

If you must use a dryer, set it to the lowest possible heat setting. You should also place your shoes in a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase to protect them. Be sure to remove your shoes from the dryer while they are still slightly damp, because if they are completely dry, they may shrink or become misshapen.

Once dry, you can reattach your laces and insoles, and you are good to go!

We hope you found this guide helpful! Now you know how to clean your shoes in the washer and dryer without damaging them. Be sure to follow these steps, and your shoes will look good as new in no time! If you’re looking for more laundry tips, check out our blogs on how to keep towels soft and our laundry tips and tricks guide. And if you’re dealing with a bigger issue with your appliances, call the expert washer and dryer repair team at Conner’s Appliance!

Anna Conner

Anna Conner

Save $20 Off Appliance Repair Services

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter to and we’ll beam useful content right to your inbox. *Discount Valid for Appliance Repair Only. Cannot be combined with other offers.