Washing Machine Myths: Debunked

When it comes to laundry (and really, your washing machine) there is a wealth of information and advice about what you should and shouldn’t do. Are you using your washing machine correctly? Are you sure?

You may be doing your laundry all wrong.

Specialist in uniform with tools and housewife washing machine

There are many myths and misconceptions about washing machines, and they could be preventing you from getting all you can out of your machine. Here are some popular laundry myths that you might have heard of, debunked.

Myth: Using more detergent gets your clothes cleaner.

If you’re washing a large load, or maybe a very spoiled load of laundry, you might be inclined to think that more detergent equals a more thorough clean. Detergent takes a long time to dissolve and using more makes it harder to wash out. Also, it can damage your washer, especially in high-efficiency (HE) washers. Residue will build up in the washer, cause odors and component failures. Always refer to your washing machine owners manual for proper detergent levels.

Myth: Washing in cool water compromises cleaning. If you want really clean clothes, you need to wash in hot water.

This wasn’t always a myth, however, with newer technology, you no longer have to be concerned with compromising clean clothes for the environment. Most newer washers and detergents are designed to clean your clothes in cold water. Check out this article from consumer reports for more information on this topic: https://www.consumerreports.org/washing-machines/dont-bother-using-hot-water-to-wash-your-laundry/

Myth: All hand wash items MUST be hand-washed. Putting wool and silk in the washing machine is a big no-no.

Hand-washing can actually stress the fibers on delicate clothing and it can be a very time-consuming process. But contrary to popular belief, certain wool or silk garments can be machine washed – just check the clothing label for washing instructions.

Washing machines these days have a “Wool” and “Dedicates/Silk” program, specially designed to wash these fabrics. If you want to be on the safe side, put items which need special care into a mesh bag for extra protection.

Myth: The way to load is: water, soap, and then clothes

This depends on your washing machine. The way of the world for all top-loading washers was to fill your washing machine with water, add detergent and then add your clothes. But now it all depends on your washing machine. Some machines have a dispenser for soap, and still others, you put your clothes in first.

Modern High Efficiency (HE) machines require that the clothes be put in first while dry. This is so that the machine can sense at the start of the cycle how much “weight” the clothes have, and so then can add the proper amount of water to wash them.

As always, be sure to check your washing machine owners manual for proper loading procedures.

Myth: Your Washing Machine doesn’t need to be cleaned.

While it might seem strange that you need to wash your washing machine, it’s requirement to give it a clean from time to time. If your washing machine is equipped, you may even be able to run a program specifically designed for this purpose; look for a “drum clean” or “sanitize” program. Or run the hottest water temp along with a tub cleaner available at the market with an empty load. This eliminates odor-causing bacteria and gives the drum surface a good clean. Add a descaler to remove limescale deposits caused by hard water.

If you follow these tips, you will save time and money, while ensuring a long life for your laundry machine and clothes. 

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Posted in PDQ Repair Blog.

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