Doing laundry is not what I consider fun, but something we all do out of necessity. Instead of cringing at the thought of how many loads you need to do, here are some ways to conserve energy in the laundry that can help with these tips to save water, electricity, chemicals, money, and put more of that precious time to better use.
As an alternative to washing just a few pieces to a pair of jeans or one dress that you want to wear the next day, why not try reducing the number of loads and opt for a larger load? Having each family member of a certain age responsible for washing their own clothes is a valuable life lesson, but there are more waste and expense for small individual loads involved over a larger one with items of the same type that need laundering as well.
Many of us are under the impression that using only hot water is more sanitary when washing. Hotter temperature and vigorously swishing the clothes is likely to kill more bacteria, but it also hurts fabrics to speed up their wear. Besides, a lot of people do use laundry sanitizers when washing as a safety precaution to help with germs, viruses and bacteria.
Washing clothes in cold water is just as good on most occasions except for heavily soiled items and helps conserve energy in the laundry. The reason is because of how much energy the washing machine takes heating the water. For instance, if you wash a load in warm water and rinse with warm, you can pay about $0.53 a load compared to $0.29 cents if you washed in warm and rinsed with cold. This amount can vary depending on the cost per kilowatt. In addition, washing clothes in cold water is less abusive on the fabrics.
In the past, I always used powered detergents that were sold in big bucket containers because I thought it was the most economical. But I was wrong, I discovered after working with Purex and trying liquid detergents. You honestly do use a lot less detergent in liquid form compared to the powdered variety, actually a few tablespoons per load. This also helps reduce pollution in a reduction of chemicals that you are sending down the drain.
Something else that may surprise you is the speed that your washing machine spins also matters for how well you conserve energy with laundry. When the machine is spinning at high speed, the more water it drains out when you take the load to your dryer for less drying time. Of course, you don’t want to use that same high spin cycle when washing delicates because it will ruin them.
These are just a few laundry tips that can help you make a difference. Without much effort, you will save more money and work less while benefitting the earth and the green movement. You also might find it helpful to read my earlier post on laundry room organization that can save you more time.