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According to Women’s Day magazine, the average family goes through about 400 loads of laundry a year. To help you complete this chore faster, cheaper and more efficiently, follow these six simple steps.

Dot the spots. Although it’s best to try and remove stains the second they happen, we all know the occasional spot will make its way into your laundry room. Keep a stain remover handy and make sure to inspect and treat your clothes before every load.

Check your detergent. Make sure you are using the proper detergent for your washing-machine (i.e. high-efficiency machines require less detergent).

Measure precisely. Using too much detergent doesn’t necessarily get clothes cleaner. Often times, using too much detergent leaves clothes sticky and stiff.

Laundry 101

Divide and conquer. Separating clothes into lights and darks, as well as flipping clothes inside out, is important because it preserves the color and quality.

Clean by degrees. A common misconception is that clothes must be washed in hot water to get them clean. In fact, hot water can fade colors, set stains and in some cases, shrink your clothes. Cold water is less likely to shrink items and can cut energy costs. However, washing your clothes in warm water is the most effective, as it is less likely to compromise clothes shape and can help activate detergent and stain removers.

Dry it right: To avoid shrinking clothes and setting stains, the best way to dry clothes is to air dry them. It also helps to reduce energy costs.

We at The Balancing Act know that laundry is unavoidable, but it doesn’t have to be an unpleasant chore. By following these simple steps, you can maximize your effectiveness and minimize energy costs.

Sources:
Everything You Need to Know About Laundry” by Melinda Dodd in Women’s Day, May 2010

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