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How long are bed sheets supposed to last?

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[OP]
Jr. Member
Oct 16, 2009
103 posts
27 upvotes

How long are bed sheets supposed to last?

How many washings, or how many years are bed sheets supposed to last?

Our latest sheets survived about 5-6 washings, which is the best mileage we've gotten (worst was 2 washings). Then when applying the dried sheets to the bed, we notice there's a large "thin-spot", that then becomes a huge hole when slept-on. Is that normal? It's been like this for the past several sets of sheets.

My wife and I sleep on the sheets, and we are light people.

Details:
  • Wash on normal/warm (or sometimes hot). Dry on "delicate/low" and drying cycle is stopped early (we remove the sheets once they are dry).
  • We use a "normal" detergent and dryer sheets.
  • Apartment-building washers/dryers. Washers/dryers have been changed since we lived here and problem persists.
  • Tried different sheet brands. But always buy 100% cotton, 300-500 thread-counts. One time tried modal (which only lasted 2 washings).
  • Wife and I have been together 20 years, and she's never complained of seeing my legs twitch (Restless Legs Syndrome). I often go to bed later than her, and I've seen her leg twitch once-in-a-blue-moon (like maybe once a month). However, I won't say it's NOT Restless Legs Syndrome (for me), as the thin-spot (that becomes a hole) generally forms near my feet/calves area.

Anyway some advice would be appreciated. We haven't owned a pair of sheets that last more than a year.
23 replies
Deal Guru
User avatar
Nov 19, 2002
12184 posts
659 upvotes
How frequently are you washing? Does 5-6 washings mean 5-6 days, weeks, months, years?

Just judging by number of washes, it seems quite low. I don't think we've ever had a set die anywhere near that quickly. We wash cold, otherwise you seem to treat yours pretty much the same as ours.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Dec 27, 2009
7751 posts
5235 upvotes
Victoria, BC
My sheets last many times longer than that. What are your sheets made from - rice paper? In short, no that is not normal, especially given your description of how you treat them. I've honestly never had sheets do that.
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 4, 2009
7595 posts
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Lol, we have sheets that are 10 yrs old! Are you beating them with rocks to wash?
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Lucky
Deal Expert
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Feb 11, 2007
19656 posts
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GTA
Out sheets last 10+ years. I think your toe nails might be too long and cutting the sheets. Or maybe your feet are too rough and sanding it down. Fix up your feet or wear socks to bed to fix it.
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Sr. Member
Oct 14, 2012
833 posts
570 upvotes
Woodstock
We buy cheaper sheets and they last a couple of years minimum, machine washed and dried at least weekly. Some are 300 count 100% (from the Bay). Longest lasting are the 50/50 polyester cotton. If you want an experiment, try a poly-cotton blend. Should last for years. Polyester is very hard wearing. However you may not like the texture.

Not meaning to sound rude, but are toenails a factor? If a nail has been broken or had to re-grow after something damaged the nail, it may "stick up" enough to catch on fabric, even if it's not particularly long. If there's a noticeable wear spot it usually suggests something is catching there. And if it's the same spot each time, it does not sound like the washer is catching at the fabric.
Jr. Member
May 9, 2014
166 posts
77 upvotes
Toronto, ON
Has 2 sets of ikea sheets in rotation for 13 years until 1 set wore through recently. Replaced that set with a Kirkland set. Don’t see that Kirkland set wearing out anytime soon.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Sep 21, 2010
15185 posts
4637 upvotes
Montréal
Something is wrong w the washing/drying machines you're using. That's not normal at all.
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Jr. Member
May 15, 2020
135 posts
80 upvotes
Thornhill ON
Is enough water in the washer ?
Deal Fanatic
Mar 21, 2010
6591 posts
3764 upvotes
Toronto
I've honestly never had bed sheets wear through. Right now we're using Kirkland ones but have used whatever's cheapest at Homesense before with no problems. Always regular 100% cotton.

Assuming your regular clothes are wearing fine, it's probably not the washer/dryer. I'd look into getting name-brand sheets (if you're not already), or looking more about how you sleep maybe.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 4, 2010
6697 posts
6280 upvotes
jellytot88 wrote: How many washings, or how many years are bed sheets supposed to last?

Our latest sheets survived about 5-6 washings, which is the best mileage we've gotten (worst was 2 washings). Then when applying the dried sheets to the bed, we notice there's a large "thin-spot", that then becomes a huge hole when slept-on. Is that normal? It's been like this for the past several sets of sheets.

My wife and I sleep on the sheets, and we are light people.

Details:
  • Wash on normal/warm (or sometimes hot). Dry on "delicate/low" and drying cycle is stopped early (we remove the sheets once they are dry).
  • We use a "normal" detergent and dryer sheets.
  • Apartment-building washers/dryers. Washers/dryers have been changed since we lived here and problem persists.
  • Tried different sheet brands. But always buy 100% cotton, 300-500 thread-counts. One time tried modal (which only lasted 2 washings).
  • Wife and I have been together 20 years, and she's never complained of seeing my legs twitch (Restless Legs Syndrome). I often go to bed later than her, and I've seen her leg twitch once-in-a-blue-moon (like maybe once a month). However, I won't say it's NOT Restless Legs Syndrome (for me), as the thin-spot (that becomes a hole) generally forms near my feet/calves area.

Anyway some advice would be appreciated. We haven't owned a pair of sheets that last more than a year.
If this is happening to with set of sheets, you are doing something wrong. I've had mine for over 5 years and no problem - 100% cotton, changed every week. I've actually never had mine wear out - I just get bored of the colour/pattern. Likely it's b/c you're washing on warm/hot...there's no reason to wash anything on hot unless it's deeply soiled. It's nothing to do with restless leg or whatever.
Member
Nov 27, 2020
268 posts
535 upvotes
Another mind-boggling RFD thread. Can't wait to see where this goes. One thing's for sure - I will get some good head shaking dumbfoundedness along the journey. Carry on.
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
12127 posts
7305 upvotes
Paris
My parents know I like bamboo sheets so my Dad bought me some at Cdn Tire. Washed them, put them on and rolled over to go to sleep and tore a hole in them so some of the fitted sheet came with me stuck to me.

Literally the only sheets that havent lasted me 10 years.
Deal Addict
Dec 3, 2006
3969 posts
12332 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Using sheets from The Bay...think it's the Gluckstein brand...5 years and counting. Solid sheets other than the white is slightly discolored to an off white. No tears at all.

Sleep commando in summer... and t shirt only in winter. We wash our sheets maybe once a month.
Deal Expert
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Feb 8, 2014
26829 posts
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Socially Distanced
Mine are not new but perhaps planned obsolescence has gone to warp speed.
Are your other clothes wearing like this?

Have you tried other brands of sheets?
Is it somehow your washing machine/dryer?
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Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 26, 2002
6492 posts
863 upvotes
BC
I've been buying sheets from costco since they opened here, 25+ years. They have never worn out, I have several sets because I keep buying new for new colours/patterns, but the old are not worn out.

Normal washing, normal drying.
That's my 2cents worth
Deal Addict
Dec 4, 2011
2336 posts
2432 upvotes
Montréal
WTF are you doing to these sheets when you wash them?
Penalty Box
Apr 18, 2013
3870 posts
2151 upvotes
Canada
engineered wrote: Out sheets last 10+ years. I think your toe nails might be too long and cutting the sheets. Or maybe your feet are too rough and sanding it down. Fix up your feet or wear socks to bed to fix it.
More likely it's too much rough sex

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