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How to wash laundry economically?! Very boring thread warning!!

(23 Posts)
bluebellpaddock Tue 17-Oct-17 17:31:43

I can’t ask my mother because my pride just won’t let me.... but we are trying to reduce our electricity use and I do put on quite a few hot washes.

10 month old, lots of towels and cloths with poop and food on!

I’ve brought some sensitive Dettol laundry detergent and wondering if it really will clean everything as well as a hot wash will? Does anyone wash their towels and pants on just a 30 with normal detergent?

Any help will be very much appreciated!!

Gramgram Tue 17-Oct-17 23:34:26

I wash most stuff on 40. Delicates on a hand wash 30. Every now and then I'll give my towels a good hot wash, my towels are not white. If they were I'd probably be boil washing every time. Have you tried soaking stained stuff before washing. Also do full loads rather than half loads.

I use a heated airer rather than a tumble drier.

Good luck with the savings.

bluebellpaddock Wed 18-Oct-17 08:43:52

@Gramgram thanks so much for your reply. I will switch everything to 40 and see how we go. I do use stain remover most of the time but I have to admit sometimes I’ve been a bit lazy and put it on a hot wash.
Love the idea of heated airer, I’ll have to look into that. Thanks again! smile

5rivers7hills Wed 18-Oct-17 08:47:01

I wash all clothes at 30 but put towels, cleaning cloths and bedding on at 50.

deepestdarkestperu Wed 18-Oct-17 08:50:18

I wash everything at 40 except for towels and bedding which get done on 60 (and DP’s work stuff which gets its own separate hot wash when he does it because he comes home filthy!)

Never had any issues smile

JohnLapsleyParlabane Wed 18-Oct-17 08:53:14

For poo stained items, soak them in cold water as soon as you can, this will help reduce staining. Also drying outside /in direct sunlight massively improves stains.

cjt110 Wed 18-Oct-17 09:04:26

BLEACH! Ok, not such a great suggestion but whenever we had stains that wouldnt wash out on whites with our son I would soak them in a mix of thin bleach with water. The stain would come out then I would chuck them in the machine at 40. Always came out stain free.

WindyWednesday Wed 18-Oct-17 09:55:32

Napisan chucked into the wash.

MrsPear Wed 18-Oct-17 10:11:39

Check that there are not shorter cycles. For poo I'd never wash below 60 anyhow. We have daily quick cycle and 60 with 1200 spin is 59 minutes. Re energy use only have it switched on if using. The amount of plugs people leave in and on amazes me. At the moment I have the Internet plug and fridge plug. That is it. Also are you electric heating and or cooker - much more difficult to lower of so.

BarbaraofSevillle Wed 18-Oct-17 10:12:02

Counter intuitively, a lot of cooler or shorter washes use more electricity than a 40 cotton cycle so check your manual before changing which program you use.

But in any case, I would expect your washing machine to be a very small contributor to your power bill, so the saving probably won't be that great and you should look at other things like lighting, fridge, etc.

Anatidae Wed 18-Oct-17 10:14:37

Your washing machine isn’t a big eater of electricity- I’d keep the hot washes for towels etc.

Things like the tumble dryer are bigger users. Get into the habit of unplugging /turning off at the plug things like chargers etc and turning lights off. Heating down a degree etc etc.

Apileofballyhoo Wed 18-Oct-17 10:16:25

You could get cheap disinfectant for any poo clothes and then throw them in to a cooler wash. I use the short cycle for things that aren't really that dirty, but towels bedding socks and underwear all go in at 60, as do DH's work shirts.

maddiemookins16mum Wed 18-Oct-17 10:31:12

Top tip for dirty toddler clothes - soda crystals. Green bag, like a bag of sugar size, next to the washing powder. It shifts most stuff (like food on pyjama tops, bibs, tea towels, etc). I used to do a soda crystal wash twice a week on 30 degrees with the above items, never needed a really hot wash. The soda crystals are about a quid a bag. Mine last a few months.

Rainatnight Wed 18-Oct-17 10:32:55

Where do you put the soda crystals? And do you use it alongside detergent?

IToldYouIWasFreaky Wed 18-Oct-17 10:36:55

I use soda crystals too. Instructions are on the back of the bag (they have many uses!) but basically, I either make up a solution for soaking before washing, or just add some to the detergent drawer along with detergent.
A capful of disinfectant with detergent would do the same as Dettol wash, right?

maddiemookins16mum Wed 18-Oct-17 10:37:57

Yes, I put a scoop in the drawer where the powder goes and use liquud in the wee lid thing in the machine. At one point (many years ago when skint), I always purchased the cheap as chips basics laundry detergent and used it on every wash with a scoop of soda crystals, saved me a fortune. A scoop was about quarter of a average tea mug.

LapdanceShoeshine Wed 18-Oct-17 10:45:35

I agree that your washing machine probably isn't having a massive impact on your electricity consumption, but still it's worth using a pre-wash soak like Napisan for pooey stuff, & then washing at 40, with the Dettol anti-bacterial rinse as belt & braces smile

What lightbulbs do you use? LED bulbs are expensive to buy but use a fraction of what even low-energy bulbs use & will last pretty much forever. If you get "warm white" the light is pretty much like the old ones.

I used to have 50w halogen spotlights in my kitchen & bathroom ceiling - now have 5w LEDs. Small lamps also have 5w LEDs, & ceiling lights 14w, which are actually brighter than the old tungsten 100w.

It's made a noticeable difference to our bills!

Anatidae Wed 18-Oct-17 10:45:47

You can make colour catchers too with soda crystals. Soak cut up squares of and old towel or cloth in them, leave to dry and put one in each wash.

ArcheryAnnie Wed 18-Oct-17 10:53:55

Don't use a tumble dryer - they eat electricity, and also wear your clothes out faster!

30 degrees or 40 degrees is fine for most things. I normally do towels at 30 or 40, but occasionally do them at 60 or even 90 if we've been ill. (But you really, seriously don't need to do a hot wash every time.)

Most people also put too much laundry powder/gel/liquid in. If you put too much in, it leaves a residue, and it doesn't get the clothes any cleaner anyway.

reallybadidea Wed 18-Oct-17 11:02:51

I tried using soda crystals to replace a proportion of washing detergent, they made my clothes feel terribly stiff and unpleasant. I even managed to rip a pair of jeans because they were so crunchy.

Agree with using the tumble dryer less, I hang things out to dry wherever possible and just finish off in the TD. It might be worth looking into economy 7 tarrifs to see whether you could reorganise when you use things to take advantage of cheaper electricity.

CaptainWarbeck Wed 18-Oct-17 11:06:53

If you have an eco setting on your machine it will be lower electricity usage even though the wash cycle will probably take longer.

Soak stained clothes in a tub of water with a scoop of vanish before washing, so the machine has to do less work.

I'm sure I saw a choice or which or something article about washes on 20C being just as effective as 40C with nearly all current detergents.

Gramgram Thu 19-Oct-17 12:47:12

I don't buy anything special to get rid of stains. I soak the clothes and find a quick squirt of washing up liquid on the remaining stain is enough to get rid of most food based stains on clothing on a 40 wash.

safariboot Thu 19-Oct-17 13:23:01

A lot of laundry detergents now claim they wash great at 40 or 30. But that's marketing and I don't know how true it is. Although if you're using a bio detergent (and most are) the enzymes will work properly at 40 but not at 60.

A 60 wash might not be as effective as you'd hoped at killing germs, the water might never reach 60 or only briefly.

That said, if you do routinely wash at 40/30, you should do some washes at 60 to stop gunk and germs building up inside the machine. They can be empty runs or regular washes.

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