If you buy used LEGO elements, or you have young children who regularly play with LEGO, you know how important it is to have a reliable and efficient method to clean soiled LEGO bricks. We have discussed cleaning LEGO a number of times (see links at the end of this post), and today I wanted to show you an interesting new product I was recently made aware of. It is called BlockWash by Kuitsok. 🙂
The simplest way to clean large quantities of LEGO bricks is to fill the bathtub (or other large tub) with lukewarm water, add a bit of mild liquid detergent, and swoosh it all around. However this may not provide enough agitation to really clean the LEGO pieces. LEGO fans got clever, and realized that they can in fact wash their LEGO in the washing-machine to get a good result (gentle cycle, lukewarm water, mild soap), but you need some kind of bag to put them in. There are some laundry washbags for delicate items that you can use for this purpose, but they are often not strong enough for holding LEGO element, and have holes that are too big – allowing small LEGO pieces to fall though.
BlockWash was developed by a LEGO fan, after buying some used LEGO for his children, and discovering that cleaning them is not that easy. He also saw that daycare centers did not have a reliable way of cleaning their building toys. Blair started experimenting with different ideas to make a bag that could be used for containing LEGO pieces in the washing-machine. Eventually he found a fabric that could keep even the smallest pieces contained, and also provide a very slight scrubbing action on the bricks to help clean and sanitize them. Thus Blair created BlockWash to provide a solution to both parents with LEGO-loving kids, and adult LEGO fans who buy used LEGO elements for their own building.
Here is the official description of BlockWash: Keep your children from germs and clean their toy blocks with BlockWash by Kuitsok. Children love playing with toys – especially little building blocks like LEGO, DUPLO, Tyco and Mega Bloks. That’s because these blocks give them the ability to express their imagination and be extremely creative. The only problem is that children also have a habit of sharing germs, and these blocks carry them fairly easily. That’s why you need BlockWash by Kuitsok. BlockWash consists of two premium nano mesh bags that hold your blocks, so you can sanitize them in the washing-machine. Simply drop your blocks in, zip the durable zipper, and wash with a warm, soapy cycle. When they’re done, let them air-dry, and before you know it, they’ll be clean and ready to be played with time and again. That, and you’ll save germs being passed around between your children’s little hands. More fun, less germs. Choose BlockWash by Kuitsok.
I got curious, and I thought to give BlockWash a try. They are available on Amazon, and are less than $10. There are two bags in a BlockWash package. The reason for this is to make sure your washing-machine doesn’t get imbalanced. So you would always want to add both bags to the washer. (UPDATE: BlockWash is no longer available through Amazon, but you can purchase it via the company’s website.)
I was surprised by how large the bags are; 16×20 inches. That’s big enough to fit at least four pounds of regular LEGO pieces, or quite a bit of LEGO DUPLO! The bags are made of a sturdy mesh with very fine holes, and like it said in the description; they will hold even the smallest LEGO elements. The bags are closed by a strong zipper, and there are no gaps around the zipper either. These are definitely good quality bags.
We have a standard size washer, and the bags fit in nicely. If you plan to get these, I would suggest not to fill the bags fully, so water can easily swoosh around the pieces. It’s probably best to also add a few cloth items in the washer at the same time – something like towels. This will further help with balance, and also eliminate the LEGO filled bags banging around the washer. Use only mild liquid detergent, lukewarm water and gentle cycle.
According to the description on Amazon, the “bags are made of a premium nano mesh that scrubs the blocks as they tumble, and are durable enough to hold up to your blocks and your washing machine.” Even though the scrubbing is listed as an intentional positive feature, I was kind of concerned. I certainly didn’t want my LEGO to get scratched. The mesh does have a slight roughness to it. I didn’t notice any adverse effects on the pieces I washed, but I might be concerned with what effect this scratchiness would have on large clear elements like windshields. It would probably take several washes to really see a negative effect though, as the roughness is slight. If you only wash LEGO when you buy a used lot, I wouldn’t worry about it. However if you wash LEGO regularly because they are used by small children, it might be a good idea to keep windshields and other large smooth pieces out of the bags and just wash them by hand. And of course make sure you keep electronics, batteries, lights, and motors out of the washer. They can be simply wiped down with alcohol when needed.
The BlockWash bags certainly make cleaning LEGO super easy and convenient. I like that they are big, and can hold a lot of elements. Both the bag and the zipper look sturdy enough to stand up to regular use. As I mentioned above, I did add a couple of towels to the wash to help balance the load, and also to avoid the bags banging into the side of the washer. Next time I’m thinking of also adding a few cloth pieces inside the bags to avoid the pieces hitting each other too much.
I did have one issue though, which is not related to the quality of the bags, but the packaging. The BlockWash bags are packed in a simple clear plastic baggie, with a cardboard piece stapled to the top. On my package, one of the staples went through the BlockWash bag inside. If I would have opened the package fast, the staple could have ripped the BlockWash bag. Fortunately I noticed it and removed the staple carefully.
All in all the BlockWash bags are a great solution if you regularly buy used LEGO that you need to clean, or if you have kids, or run a daycare. It’s nice to see LEGO fans finding solutions to problems, then execute them to make all our lives a little easier. Blair stands behind his products and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee: “If you aren’t completely happy with our Nano Tech Blockwash bags, simply return our bags within 30 days for a full refund, no questions asked”.
If you have any questions about BlockWash, feel free to ask them below. If there are questions I can’t answer myself, I can reach out to Blair to respond to them. Also, if you already have BlockWash, you are welcome to share your own review. And if you have other methods of cleaning LEGO feel free to add those as well. 😉
And you might also like to check out the following related posts: