How to Cut Your Laundry Time in Half (and Even Enjoy Doing the Wash)
Let’s get down and dirty and talk about the laundry. It is a chore that most of us dread, but I have come to terms with it, thanks to some tricks that have lightened my load and made doing the wash more fun.
Start with a good machine. When my older machine finally gave up the ghost, I budgeted for a good quality machine, and it has made all the difference. With the excellent cleaning power and high spin cycle, I can now eliminate extra soaking and re-washing for the majority of my laundry. Plus because this washer is more efficient at rinsing and draining, the clothes are barely damp when they emerge, leading to much shorter drying times.
Make the laundry room a pleasant place. No one wants to spend time in a dark, dank basement or a cluttered laundry closet. Take an afternoon or two to brighten up the space with paint, lighting, wall art, a folding table or shelves, baskets for sorting, hangers and poles, etc. With everything bright, airy and uncluttered, the time spent doing laundry won’t seem like a chore.
Pretreat stains promptly. Use a spray pre-treater if you are home or a pretreatment pen or wipe if you are not. Coffee spills, lunch spots and lipstick smudges will be easier to deal with, if you attack first and wash later.
Presort the laundry at the source. Have divided bins set up in each bedroom, so clothes can be sorted into the right loads as soon as they are taken off. This will not only cut down your laundry sorting time, but it will help you see at a glance when it is time to do a particular load, just based on how full a section happens to be.
Do a pocket check. I admit that I used to skip this step, but after one too many messes that had to be cleaned up later, I found that the small investment of time to check pockets is one that pays off. Tissues, gum, crayons, pens and other objects can stain clothes and ruin your appliances.
Don’t overstuff the washer. Clothes won’t get clean if they don’t have enough room to agitate and tumble around. It is a common problem in most laundry rooms. Make sure that you have gap of at least a hands width between the top or front of the drum and the laundry.
Shake out the clothes on the way to the dryer. Giving laundry a good shake will open it up, allowing for faster drying time and less wrinkles. For sheets and other things that tend to get twisted up in the dryer, take a moment to fold them in an accordion pattern first. This gives them a better change of drying quickly and without getting tangled up.
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