Laundry can see a confusing task for those who do not have much experience handling this responsibility. In reality, while the tasks may take a while to complete, they are not at all complicated if you have a system you follow. Here we will outline the basic steps involved in doing laundry that should easily become habit to novices.
Study the labels – Most garments come with labels that indicate the suitable washing techniques that are to be applied. The labels will help in organizing the washing in separate piles including dry clean only and wash separately. For a beginner, it is not a good idea to attempt using at home DIY dry clean kits. Just take the clothing to a professional to avoid damage. Remember at the same time to go through pockets and remove all items. If there are clothes with loose buttons, sew them back in properly before washing.
Sort colors – for those that you will be washing at home, you now need to separate by colors. You basically need to separate the lightly colored clothing from the dark. This is to avoid color transfer in case the dark clothing runs. Once this is done, you now need to separate the apparel from bedding and towels. If you have jeans to wash, place them on their own. Some underwear items are quite delicate and should also be washed separately. If this sorting results in too many loads, you can work with just light and dark colored loads, but use settings and detergents to suit the most delicate clothing items in the load.
Stain treatment – before you finally start washing, be sure to check for any tough stains. Normal washing may not get rid of the stains so pre-treatment is a good idea to ensure everything comes out clean in the final rinse. You can use a special stain remover for this, or rub in just a little ordinary detergent.
To get your wash going, you will need to add ordinary laundry detergent to the suitable washing machine slot. Use the minimum recommended amount for the size of load you have put in according to the instructions on the bottle or box. If you intend to use fabric softener or bleach, remember to also pour into the designated slots accordingly. Be very careful with bleach ad ensure you only use it with whites.
It is always preferable to make use of cold water. Not only is it energy efficient, it works just as well with a normal load of washing. Hot water is also not a good idea with garments as it can cause shrinking of fabrics. If you are trying to disinfect or wash a particularly dirty load of whites, bedding or towels, hot water can be used. Check the label to ascertain the highest recommended temperature setting. This should only be done during the wash cycle for sanitization. Rinsing should be done using cold water.
Never overload the machine, otherwise the clothing will not be properly washed. Also, be sure to turn dark colored and detailed clothing inside out to protect the finishing and fabric.
As soon as the load is done, immediately remove the items from the machine and shake them loose. This is to prevent wrinkles from setting in and discourage the formation of mildew. Empty out the lint tray before using the dryer. When loading the dryer, separate lightweight clothing from heavier items and use the appropriate temperature settings to prevent shrinkage. You can alternatively opt to dry by hanging items to air dry. If the fabrics are heavy, lay them flat to dry to avoid unnecessary stretching. As soon as the load is dry, fold or hang in the wardrobe to avoid wrinkling.