8 Laundry Mistakes You Didn’t Know You Were Making

There are so many more interesting things you could be doing and few people actually enjoy doing the laundry. That’s not a reason to do it badly though, just the opposite in fact. If you don’t enjoy something, but it has to be done, it makes sense to do it as well, and as efficiently as you possibly can.

If you avoid the following common laundry mistakes, you’ll at least have the satisfaction of getting the best results from your washing machine and you’ll never have the irritation of having to put the same load though twice.

1. Overloading

This isn’t a laundry mistake you make without knowing. You know perfectly well what you’re doing, but it’s so tempting to get it all done in one load that you do it anyway! Stop. You won’t get your clothes clean and you will wear out your machine faster.

2. Ignoring care labels

Granted it takes a little time to become familiar with all the symbols, but once you do you’ll never have to worry about shrinkage, colour run, excessive creasing or any of those other little disasters that make laundry day stressful.

3. Not using the right program

Your washing machine comes with lots of different programs, and if you’re typical you use somewhere between one and three of them. Make time to get out the manual and check out all your options. It could turn out that you could be saving energy, getting a better result, or improving your clothing care just by taking advantage of some of those programs you’ve been ignoring until now.

4. Not turning clothes inside out

Some laundry tips and tricks are about getting clothes cleaner, others are about making them last longer. This one covers both. It’s the side of the clothes next to your skin that gets all the sweat and skin cells stuck on it, so that’s the side you need most directly exposed to the hot water and detergent. Washing also fades bright colours and it’s much better to have that fading on the inside than the out.

5. Using too much detergent

If you’re doing it by eye, you’re probably using too much detergent. That’s costing you money and it won’t get your clothes cleaner. You’ll end up with badly rinsed clothes, and chemical residue in your laundry that you really don’t want next to your skin.

6. Using the wrong sort of detergent

The wrong sort for your clothes or the wrong sort for your machine. As a general rule, liquid detergents are great for pre-treating stains, liquitabs are bleach free so good for coloured clothes, while powders have more bleach and give an extra zing to your whites.

7. Not using lingerie bags

These mesh bags can be used on any small delicate items and add a layer of protection for clothes that don’t withstand the rough and tumble of a general wash.

8. Not maintaining or repairing your washing machine

If there’s a problem of any sort, get your washing machine repairs taken care of promptly. A faulty machine might not come up to the right temperature, could get too hot, fail to spin properly, or do a host of other things. At best it won’t get your clothes as clean as it should, more seriously it could damage them, and at worst if you ignore a minor problem you’re risking it having a knock-on effect and becoming a major fault that will be very expensive to repair.