There’s more to April 15th than taxes. It’s National Laundry Day.
1. National Laundry Day
This year, Tax Day is moved to next month so April 15th is all about National Laundry Day. Although we usually don’t like doing laundry much like we don’t enjoy doing our taxes, we are thrilled when we smell that special fresh laundry scent.
If you can’t find much to love about this day, just appreciate the fact that the dryer was invented back in 1800.
2. Simple Laundry Tips
Even the most knowledgeable laundresses can benefit from some innovative tips. Work them into your routine, and they'll reduce your time in the laundry room and leave your clothes looking as good as new. Here's a 101 on laundering.
Prepare the laundry
Before you toss the items in your washing machine, make sure pins are removed, zippers are zipped and hooks are closed. However, don’t button buttons—this can stress the buttons themselves and buttonholes. Empty pockets and turn them inside out, unfurl socks, and unroll cuffs. Turn delicate items, sweaters, and cotton t-shirts inside out to prevent pilling. If you don’t want to waste time pairing your socks, put them together in a mash bag.
Make your own softener
Residues from fabric softeners can aggravate allergies and sensitivities, while leaving buildup on moisture sensors or lint screens, blocking air flow. To save your machine and reduce your exposure to toxic chemicals, just make your own softener with vinegar and essential oils.
Boost your laundry detergent’s efficiency
To boost the cleaning power of a natural detergent, add one-half cup of borax which is a naturally occurring mineral that has antiseptic, antibacterial, water-softening, and whitening properties.
Know the cycles
A regular cycle is best for sturdy and dirty clothes. Use the delicate cycle for lacy and loosely woven fabrics. Use hot water for white loads, warm water for the average load, and cold water for bright colors.
Know your dryer
The permanent press setting has a cool-down cycle at the end to reduce wrinkling. On air fluff, the dryer circulates air but adds no heat; this is good for freshening pillows and reviving clothes that have been packed in a suitcase but don't need to be washed.
Know when not to use a softener
Baby skin is too delicate for any chemicals so it’s best to avoid. Even your towels don’t benefit from it, believe it or not as it can actually stiffen towels with residual buildup over time.
Like all other household appliances, the washer and dryer must be cared for.
3. How To Properly Maintain Your Washer and Dryer
Regular and proper maintenance makes your washer and dryer more efficient as well as increases their lifespan. By ensuring they work optimally, you lower your Oncor Energy costs.
Cleaning the washer
Wipe the washer's interior with a clean, damp cloth, then run a short hot wash cycle with detergent. Rinse the empty machine. You can occasionally disinfect with a solution of three-fourths cup chlorine bleach and one tablespoon powdered detergent for every gallon of warm water used. Let sit for a few minutes, then drain and rinse several times.
If you want a more natural approach, you need distilled vinegar, baking soda and a spray bottle. Spray the drum with white vinegar that cuts through residue, buildup, hard water stains, and even grease effortlessly. Don’t forget the rubber gaskets where you will probably find scum, mildew, and even hair. Pour the vinegar into the detergent dispenser and run the longest hot water cycle. Sprinkle half a cup of baking soda directly into the drum of the washing machine and run it on the same highest and hottest setting. Wipe it with a microfiber cloth until it shines and let it dry.
Don’t forget about the dryer
To prevent the dryer from overheating, clean the filter after every use, and remove accumulated lint from behind the dryer. From time to time, disconnect the exhaust duct to remove blockage.
Laundry does occasionally require that extra hassle, especially when it comes to pesky stains as well as trying to eliminate odors that can be even more challenging. Even so, neither of these nuisances should cause you a headache, especially when you have a developed routine in place. However, a part of mastering your laundry is also in knowing when you need professional help to avoid damaging your clothing, especially in the case of super delicate fabrics.
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