Doing laundry is a tall order for most people, let alone doing it right. Since it is something that most people aren’t excited about, laundry mistakes are bound to happen. Some of these mistakes can be very costly. However, majority of the people making these mistakes are not aware that they are doing it. Here is a compilation of the most common laundry mistakes that most of us do;
Not reading the label.
This is perhaps the most overlooked step when doing laundry. While it is the first thing that one should do, many people rarely read and follow the care instructions on the label. It is always important to remember that not all garments are created equal and therefore, different garments need to be taken care of differently. For starters, the label has the basic care instructions on how to handle that specific garment. Read it.
Using too much detergent.
Another laundry mistake commonly made is using too much detergent. More detergent doesn’t give you a cleaner wash. It is advisable that you use only recommended amounts of detergent to avoid having a layer of foam that is difficult to rinse off. Excess detergent gets caught up in hard to rinse places like seams, under collars and pockets. This causes a build-up of both dirt and bacteria on your clothes.
Bleach isn’t good for your garments. Reach for bleach only when it is very necessary. You could use some other remedy to deal with stains. What you might take to be a stubborn stain could ridiculously crumble when exposed to a home remedy like a pot of boiling water and several slices of lemon.
Lack of preparation of clothing for laundry.
It is important to thoroughly prepare all the clothes that you are going to wash. Some of the preparation includes unbuttoning shirts and blouses, turning the cloth inside out and zipping garments all the way up. It is also important to check pockets and do a stain pre-treatment before you can do your laundry. Here is why;
· Leaving zippers open could damage other clothes as zippers scratch against them during the wash. Ensure that all zippers are drawn all the way to avoid damage.
· Turning the clothes inside out will protect the fabric from too much friction in the sense that too much agitation will not affect the outside of your clothing.
· Leaving the pockets unchecked can turn out to be a pretty messy affair. People leave anything in their pockets, from gum to pens and crayons, these objects can be detrimental to your fabric and destructive to the washing machine.
Overfilling the washing machine.
This is one of the laundry mistakes that we all make is a bid of desperation to get through the load. Some people even overfill their machines thinking that it is cost effective. The truth is that the whole idea is not only costly but also counterproductive. Overfilling the machine is ineffective because the clothes will not have enough room to rub against each other. This means that you will end up with clothes that haven’t been washed thoroughly which you will have to redo. Always ensure that clothes are way below the line that indicates the maximum level of water permissible in the machine during the wash.
Not using protective bags.
All delicate clothing including undies and lingerie should be washed in a protective mesh bag. The bag just adds a little extra layer of protection without compromising on the level of clean that you will get. Any piece of clothing that you are worried about should be thrown into the mesh bags.
Not using fabric softener.
You might think that fabric conditioners or softeners are just another product aimed at raising the already high demands of consumerism. The truth is that this product actually conditions the fabric and gives it a longer lease of life. Not only does a fabric softener lock in the colors, it also prevents the fabric from fuzzing while making the garments comfortable to wear.
Drying too long.
Even before tossing your washed clothing into the dryer, it is important to check what the care instructions say. Ensure that you have the dryer settings and the length of drying right. As a general rule however, avoid leaving the clothes in the dryer for longer than is necessary. You could remove the clothes from the dryer before they are completely dry and keep them flat to finish dry. This will reduce the need for ironing while preventing fading, wrinkling and shrinking.
Skipping a wash.
Why would anyone skip a wash? Just because you clothes do not have sweaty smell or don’t seem dirty doesn’t mean that they are clean. There is a lot of filth out there that doesn’t come to our attention but sure gets on our clothes. Furthermore, our sweat glands are always secreting something, even if we aren’t aware of it. Ensure that all clothes get the wash they deserve, especially now that you know which laundry mistakes you have been making.
Not cleaning your dryer.
Cleaning your dryer is very vital in preventing clogging and fire hazards. Emptying the lint filter isn’t enough. You should ensure that there is no build up in the duct. Detach the duct at the back of the dryer and push out the lint with a brush as often as possible. A good indicator that the dryer is clogged is that it takes longer to dry one load that it normally would.
Leaving the dryer breaks between loads.
Letting the dryer rest before you put in the next load doesn’t save energy, quite to the contrary, it is important to run the loads one after the other without breaks. This will ensure that you make good use of heat from the preceding load which minimizes energy use.
Laundry mistakes can be minimized especially when we change our mindset about laundry. Do it enthusiastically. Find ways of making it interesting and always think about the good that you are doing to yourself. Scheduling for laundry will also help get rid of tiring heaps that make it a boring task that you wish to push to another time.