20 tips to save on laundry
We come clean on how to save 90% or more on laundry detergent and how to cut your washer and dryer's operating costs.
This post comes from Angela Colley at partner site Money Talks News.
A typical American family does about 400 loads of laundry every year -- or about eight loads a week. And it isn't cheap. Laundry detergent alone can cost about 20 cents per load. Add that up and you're spending $80 a year on soap.
But you don't have to. In the video below, Stacy Johnson explains how you can save 90% or even 100% on detergent. Check it out, then read on for more ways to save on laundry day.1. Skip the detergent. Want to save 100% on laundry detergent? Don't use it. Modern washing machines work by agitating laundry in water. The agitation is enough to clean lightly soiled clothing. Don't believe that? The blog Funny about Money conducted just such an experiment and concluded, "By and large, all of the freshly washed clothing came out with an odor: It smelled of clean water!"
- one bar of soap.
- 3 gallons plus 4 cups of water.
- 1 cup borax.
- ½ cup washing soda.
Bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Grate the bar of soap with a cheese grater. Drop the pieces into the boiling water and cook until the soap dissolves. Pour 3 gallons of water into a large bucket. Add in the soap and water mixture. Add in 1 cup of borax and half a cup of washing soda. Stir until the ingredients thicken. Use about ¼ cup (the size of a normal laundry detergent cap) per wash cycle.
3. Use less. If you're using store-bought laundry detergent, don't pour in an entire capful. Laundry detergent caps have a line about halfway down -- the amount the manufacturer wants you to use for soiled clothes. See if you can use less and achieve the same result. Unless my clothes are truly dirty, I only use about 2 tablespoons per load, about half the recommended amount.
4. Don't wash as often. I save the most on laundry by doing less of it. I'll wear the same jeans two days in a row, use the same towel for three showers, and hang up anything I've worn less than a couple of hours. It's all still clean, so why wash it again? I've cut down from five loads of laundry per week to three this way.
5. Don't buy dry-clean-only. A friend of mine buys dry-clean-only linen shirts for work. He goes through five shirts a week. Our local dry cleaner charges $2.50 per shirt, which adds up to $12.50 per week or $600 a year. For half that much, he could buy high-end washable shirts.
6. Buy store-brand detergent in bulk. You'll save money buying laundry detergent in huge sizes from warehouse stores, and you'll save even more buying the store's generic brand.
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There are some idiotic and absurd suggestions in the article that I don't get paid to refute, so I'm not giving free advice.
I can't help being a know-it-all, so I will offer the following. DON'T use cheap detergent. Tide and Cheer are the absolute best detergents on the market, period. No arguments will be acknowledged, hehe. If you want to save on detergent, use a little less rather than use a cheap detergent or, gawd forbid, no detergent at all (who the h ... thought of that?)
I use cold water, use a high efficiency LG washer, don't over dry, and maximize loads. Again, who writes this sh ..? There is so much crap to sort out from the useful info.
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