Are you tired of spending so much time and money on laundry? Read on, as this post has some tips that will help you salvage that.
According to The Folde, laundry is the third-most time-consuming chore behind cleaning and cooking. The same post revealed that people spend an average of $180-$600 per year on laundry detergent. Your figure will depend on several factors, such as how big your family is and how many loads of laundry you do.
What about the cost of running the washing machine and dryer? How about the water? The cost goes way beyond your average detergent expenses. Simply put, doing laundry is an expensive affair.
Luckily, there is something you can do to cut these costs.
Looking for spending loops that can help you save some money? Your laundry could be a good starting point.
Here are some great ways to cut the cost of laundry.
1. Do Full Loads
Doing full loads of laundry means less electricity, water and detergents are used. Always wait until you have a full load to run the machine. It will ensure you maximize the usage of these resources.
Besides, full loads mean using the machine less and less which translates to less wear and tear. This way, you will not need frequent repairs and untimely replacements.
Also, full loads help you save the time you spend on doing laundry.
Stop water and energy wastage today and wait until you have a full load to run your washing machine.
2. Use Cold Water
You do not need hot water for every cycle of laundry you do. Cold water washing consumes significantly less energy compared to hot water cycles. This not only reduces your electricity bill but also lowers your carbon footprint.
Additionally, using cold water is good for clothes’ longevity. Cold water preserves the vibrancy of the clothes and prevents shrinkage and damage. So, besides saving directly on electricity, you will likely extend the life of your clothes.
3. Use Energy-efficient Appliances
For how long have you been using your washing machine? Well, it may seem like you’re saving some money by sticking to that 15 year old washing machine, but you could be wrong. Upgrading to an energy-efficient machine may cost some money upfront, but it will save you so much more in the long run.
If you have had your washing machine for more than a decade, consider upgrading to get a more energy-efficient version. The modern energy versions have been designed to consume less power and water.
Besides, sticking with old machines that need frequent repairs is not doing your wallet any justice. Get an upgrade and save more in the future.
4. Line Dry Your Clothes
An analysis done by the EPA revealed that the clothes dryer was the biggest energy consumer in most households. They revealed that dryers consumed even much more than refrigerators running 24/7.
When weather permits, skip the dryer and air dry your clothes. Hanging your clothes can help you save a substantial amount of money. Make a clothesline in your backyard or buy a drying rack that you can use in your apartment or balcony.
Also, air drying your clothes extends the lifespan of your garments, as it’s gentler on fabrics, reducing wear and tear.
5. Use Detergent Sparingly
Many people use more than necessary detergent, hoping it would do the cleaning job better. The only thing this does is waste detergent.
It is recommended that you do not use more than two tablespoons per cycle, as the excess detergent would not rinse off well. Use just the required amount if you do not want to have soap residue on your clothes.
Save the money you spend on detergent by using it sparingly.
6. Choose the Right Detergent
Buy basic and cost-effective laundry detergent unless you have clothes that require a specific type of laundry. You do not need a specialized kind of laundry for every load.
You have no business buying the most expensive detergents, fabric softeners, bleaches, and other laundry products. Go for generic products, and you can be sure that they will get the cleaning job done just as expensive brand names would do.
7. Regular Appliance Maintenance
Regularly maintaining your washing machine enhances its performance and prolongs its lifespan, all while keeping its water and energy consumption in check.
Additionally, inspect and clean the washing machine drum to avoid mold and to residue buildup, which can impact its efficiency.
Periodically clean the lint trap in your dryer to ensure efficient airflow.
You also want to check for leaks, loose connections, or unusual sounds in the washer and dryer to catch potential issues early. Routine maintenance prevents costly repairs and ensures that your appliances operate at peak efficiency, reducing energy consumption and contributing to long-term cost savings.
8. Use Rain Water
Rainwater is free, and it can help you save so much money. If you do not have one, start by installing a rainwater harvesting system to collect rainwater, which can be used in your washing machine.
Other than directly saving you in terms of water bills, rainwater is naturally soft and lacks the minerals found in tap water. This makes it an excellent choice for laundry because you can use less detergent when the water is soft.
9. Unplug Appliances
Always unplug your washing machine and dryer after use. Leaving it on standby mode may seem like the normal thing to do, but it does consume energy that can make a difference.
Many appliances continue to draw power in standby mode, contributing to what is called “phantom” energy usage. Unplugging eliminates this standby power, preventing unnecessary electricity consumption.
10. Use Reusable Dryer Balls
Skip the disposable dryer sheets and start using reusable dryer balls to save money. These balls help improve air circulation in the dryer, reducing drying time and energy consumption.
As they tumble with the clothes, they naturally separate and fluff the laundry, preventing items from clumping together. This in turn enhances energy efficiency.
Unlike single-use dryer sheets, reusable dryer balls can last for numerous loads, saving you money. They also eliminate the need for chemical-laden fabric softeners, making them a better option for your clothes and the environment.
11. Pre-treat Stains
Always pre-treat stains on clothes, sheets, and towels before you load them into the washing machine. While it takes a little more time, it will save you some coins at the end of the day.
Pre-treating stains will often save you the need for a second wash, saving you money on detergent, water, and energy.
Create a simple pre-treatment solution using everyday household items like baking soda, vinegar, or a mild soap. Gently blot or rub the stain with the solution before tossing the garment into the washing machine.
While at it, you also maintain the quality of your clothes.
12. Laundry Frequency
How many times do you wear your jeans, sweaters, and outer clothes before washing them? Hopefully, not after one wear.
A post published on USA Today recommended that you wash your jeans after three wears if you do manual work. However, they recommend wearing them up to 10 times if you work sitting on a desk.
Other clothes you can wear up to two times include T-shirts, button-down shirts, dresses, etc.
Reducing laundry frequency will help you save money on detergents, water, and electricity bills. This move is also good for the longevity of your clothes. If you wash it less frequently, you will not need to replace it often.
13. Hand Wash Your Clothes
While this may seem like an off-grid way of life, many people are now opting for it to save some money. It is an especially great route in summertime when the weather is favorable.
Handwashing will save you money as it uses less water and no electricity. Besides saving you money, it is an excellent choice for delicate fabrics or lightly soiled items. Also, handwashing uses less friction than a washing machine. This means your clothes will wear and tear less if you hand wash them.
While it is a traditional approach to saving money, it is a great way to go, especially if you have smaller loads. You may also hand wash some garments between your schedules for full-load laundry.
14. Use the High-speed or Extended Spin Cycle in the Washer
Opting for a high-speed or extended spin cycle in your washing machine is an intelligent strategy to save both time and energy.
The extended spin cycle enhances the extraction of water from your clothes. This way, your clothes come out with less moisture, significantly reducing drying time when thrown into the dryer.
Shorter drying cycles translate to lower energy consumption, contributing to cost savings on your utility bills.
15. Switch Loads While the Dryer Is Warm.
The timing of changing loads can go a long way in helping you save some money. Don’t wait until the dryer cools down to offload and load a new cycle. Do it promptly when the dryer still has some heat in it.
The residual heat from the previous load can help kickstart the drying process for the next one, reducing the overall drying time and energy consumption. This is an excellent strategy to maximize the use of existing heat, which would otherwise have gone to waste.