1. Home

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:

http://video.about.com/housekeeping/How-to-Efficiently-Do-Laundry.htm

was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

Video:How to Efficiently Do Laundry

with Kaytie Sproul

Doing laundry is a hassle, but it can always be made easier and more efficient. Here are some tips on how to do laundry more efficiently.See Transcript

  • All Videos
  • All Home Videos
  • Housekeeping Videos

Transcript:How to Efficiently Do Laundry

Hi, I'm Kaytie Sproul, here for About.com, and today I'm going to show you how to do laundry efficiently. It's one of those chores that has to be done on a regular basis if we want to keep our clothes looking clean and fresh, not to mention other household items. Here are a few things to keep in mind before starting your next load of laundry.

Do Laundry in Correctly-Sized Loads

One of the most common mistakes people make when doing laundry is over-loading the machine. We definitely want to run full loads, which are more efficient overall, but the ideal laundry load will vary by the capacity or size of each individual washing machine. Smaller capacity top-loading machines max out around six pounds of dirty laundry, while larger capacity front-loading machines can hold up to 18 pounds. Your best bet is to consult your user manual or look on the machine itself for a guide. Just a tip: If you want to be sure that your clothing is fully washed, rinsed, and undamaged, be sure that your laundry loads contain mixed items of varying sizes, which allows the clothing to move about more fluidly in the washing machine.

Use Proper Water Temperature

Next, you need to be sure to select the right water temperature for whatever it is that you're washing. You should always review and follow the laundering instructions on whatever articles you plan to wash. Typically, you'll use warm water on permanent press and denim items and cold water on delicates. Hot water works best on heavily soiled items, but can also cause shrinkage and fading. If you'd like to avoid problems such as these, you can always pre-treat stains and pre-soak items before washing them in warm or cold water.

Use Proper Amount of Water to Do Laundry

We now need to decide how much water is necessary for each particular load. We've all used too much water when washing laundry before, and, as a result, had to run the items through the dryer multiple times before they could be removed. Situations like this are not only time wasters, but also cause increases to both water and electrical bills. The newer energy-efficient models use very minimal amounts of water, while older machines will usually allow you to select your water levels based on load size.

Do Laundry Only When Necessary

Finally, doing laundry one or two days a week is really the most efficient way to do it. Running a load whenever you have a few items that need washing is a time waster, and will also cause your utility bills to sky rocket, not to mention it's unnecessarily taxing on your washer and dryer. If you just can't wait all week to do your laundry, then a good rule of thumb is to run a load only when you have enough to fill your washing machine to capacity. If you want to further save money on your laundry expenses, consider using your washer and dryer outside of peak energy usage, which tends to run between the hours of 9 p.m. and 9 a.m., but will vary by city and provider.

Whether you're hoping to save time, money, or wear and tear on your washing machine, there are really dozens of ways to do laundry more efficiently. All it takes is a little planning and attention to detail to make a huge difference. Thanks for watching. To learn more, visit us on the web at About.com.
About videos are made available on an "as is" basis, subject to the User Agreement.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.