Summer Time Laundry Hints

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Summer time often means an increase in laundry. We may wear multiple outfits a day depending on our job and hobbies. Many summer activities involve getting dirty: sports, yard or garden work, spilled picnic foods, even water activities create more laundry with wet bathing suits and towels. Changing into something cooler or more comfortable when we get home from work may result in another outfit for the dirty clothes basket.

Do we need to wash items every time they are worn? Not necessarily. The sniff test may tell you if it needs to be washed. Some items may be worn several times prior to washing (example: jeans, khakis) if you haven’t sweated and they aren’t visibly dirty or stained. Excessive washing is hard on the fabric and decreases the life of the garment.

As with most rules, there are a few exceptions. Whites are prone to discoloration and should be washed after every wear. Bathing suits also fall into this category.

If your clothes get stained, wash, spot clean or dry clean as quickly as possible. The faster you attack the spot, the easier it is to remove. Rinse or soak in cold water as soon as you take it off and then treat and wash. Check again after washing and if the spot remains, pre-treat and rewash. Drying can permanently set the stain.

One of the biggest problems most consumers have when doing laundry is using the correct amount of detergent. Experts say the majority of us use too much detergent and more is not better. Besides making your washing machine more susceptible to mold and mildew, too much soap can lead to added wear and tear on your clothes.

Detergents are designed to freshen, remove odors, and brighten fabrics as they clean. With the introduction of HE or Highly Efficient Washers, detergents have had to change to perform effectively in lower water levels and in a machine without an agitator. The tumbling action of the drum creates more suds so we can’t use regular detergent in a HE washer. This means the detergent has to be low-sudsing and quick-dispersing to get the best cleaning performance. Measure your detergent using the lid on the bottle as a guide based on the clothes you are washing. Research says that eventually more lids will be clear so consumers can really see how much detergent they are using.

The amount of detergent needed for the best cleaning performance depends on the size and soil level of the laundry load, not the amount of water the HE washing machine uses.

If there is no color-safe bleach dispenser on your washer, add the liquid color-safe bleach to the empty tub before adding the laundry. Mixing liquid color-safe bleach with a liquid detergent can decrease the effectiveness of both products.

To make sure you are up to date on your laundry knowledge, visit The American Cleaning Institute® website. You can also call our office at 336-401-8025 for more information!

Source: The American Cleaning Institute®