Tag Archives: Washing machine tips

Is the Washing Machine or Hand-Washing Better for Clothes?

Is your washing machine really harder on your clothes than hand-washing? Is one better than the other for the environment and/or for your utility bills? In the distant past, you might have Washing Machinegone down to the nearest stream and beat your clothes against rocks to clean them. Do you really want to go back there? The washing machine revolutionized the world and freed up time for you to do what you enjoy, all in clean clothes. Still, some rumors persist that hand-washing is better for clothes, or that it saves water and electricity. The truth is, if you know how to use your washing machine to its fullest potential, you need never hand wash your clothing again.

Find the Right Cycle

In order to use a washing machine for delicate or specialty items, you first must find the appropriate cycle. Any given washing cycle has a speed at which it agitates the clothes and a speed at which it spins the water out. The cycle you choose should be based on the amount of agitation and spin the items can tolerate. For example, the “fast/slow” that may be displayed on your machine settings means the cycle will produce a fast, agitating wash cycle and a slow spin cycle. For items you suspect should be hand washed, select the delicate cycle and a cold water temperature for the wash and rinse. Adjust the setting to reflect the size of the load, to minimize the water and power used to complete the cycle. For extremely delicate items, zip them into a mesh lingerie bag for washing. This will prevent them from snagging or stretching during the wash.

Which Detergent to Use?

Your choice of detergent is as important as your choice of cycle and water temperature. For delicate clothing items, you need a mild detergent such as Woolite or any “green” detergent that doesn’t contain harsh chemicals. Regular formula detergents have chemical additives that can damage delicate fibers. Although some self-proclaimed laundry experts recommend making your own delicate laundry detergent, this is a recipe for disaster. You run the risk of ruining both your delicate laundry and your washing machine.

Washer Maintenance

The last thing you need to remember is that a well-maintained washing machine will take the best care of all of your clothes, regardless of whether they are delicate or not. So, what’s the best way to maintain your washing machine? First, don’t overload it. The owner’s manual has instructions for load size. Ensure that the machine is level to keep it from “walking” around and banging into the dryer. If your laundry room shakes when your washer runs, you need to level out the machine. Using the right amount of detergent is equally imperative. Follow the owner’s manual and product directions to ensure best results. Have the hot and cold water hoses inspected for wear and tear a few times a year. Any cracks or blisters in the hoses mean that failure, and major household flooding, is imminent.

If you live in the Salt Lake City Area, contact the professionals at Complete Appliance Repair to inspect and maintain your appliances. They will help keep your laundry machines in tip-top shape, so you won’t be forced to choose hand washing instead of your trusty washing machine.

Washing Machine Maintenance Tips

Your appliances work hard for you and your family, but your washer and dryer might take the greatest beating over time. Gallons of water, all that spinning, not to mention the variety of soaps and rinses take their toll on the equipment after a few years. Return the love with a few simple tips for maintaining your washing machine, and you’ll find your calls to the appliance repair man few and far between.

Level Your Washer for Optimum Performance

A level washer is a happy washer. Leveling your washing machine will eliminate the “walking” Housework: young woman doing laundrythat non-level machines tend to do during the spin cycle, especially if the load becomes unbalanced. This is particularly hard on the washer and may cause water hoses to disconnect, resulting in a huge, wet mess. Use a level and adjust the washer’s feet by loosening or tightening the screws on each of the four corners of the bottom. Don’t forget to check the level from front to back as well.

Washer Hose Inspection and Replacement

Much like your car, your washing machine hoses can fail over time. Look for cracks, hardening, or other wear in both the inlet hoses and those that carry the used water away to the sewer. Check the connections for tightness and leaks. Depending on where you live and where in the home your washer is located, you should replace all hoses and connectors every 2 to 5 years. Extremes in temperatures can degrade hoses and connectors more quickly, so make it closer to every 2 years if your machine lives outside

Cleaning Your Washing Machine

Your washer requires periodic cleaning, particularly the machine’s soap/softener dispensers and any filters inside the tub. Hot water is the best method for cleaning the dispensers. Add a bit of white vinegar if the machine is especially dirty or if you live in a humid part of the country. Run an extended wash cycle on hot (sans clothes of course) with 2 cups of white vinegar added to the tub after it fills with water (for top load models). Be sure to run one additional cycle using just water, to ensure that the vinegar is fully rinsed away.

Stackable Washer/Dryer Maintenance

Stackable washer and dryer maintenance is possibly even more important, based on the level of difficulty required to repair stacked washer units. These units are typically located in a small closet or other tight space, and mechanical controls are often harder to access. Give these little workhorses the love and attention they deserve.

Following these simple tips will help keep your washer working like new. Your local appliance repair service can also provide you with washer maintenance tips suited specifically to your machine, and can handle your periodic maintenance needs quickly, easily, and with minimal expense.