One of the greatest inventions of modern history has been the washing machine, and we’ve grown so accustomed to using our washer machines, that we underestimate the back-breaking work it took to wash clothes manually before they existed. A washing machine is convenient, easy to use, and extremely capable of cleaning our clothes and other fabrics. However, if you’ve never used one before, which yes, that’s possible, you might feel overwhelmed, thus wondering which settings to use, where to put your detergent, and how many clothes you can actually stuff into that drum at once.
Using Your Washer Machine Properly to Get the Best Possible Results
This awesome washer machine guide will allow you to see how the entire process is a lot simpler than it may seem, even to a total newbie. So, let’s walk you through the proper steps so that you can get those clothes clean in no time.
Step #1: Separate Your Clothes
You will need to separate the clothes that’re going to be washed. Place the whites aside as those need to be washed separately, or else the dye in your colored garments can bleed onto them. Then, look at the labels of your clothing for washing instructions, putting non-machine-washable clothing into a separate pile for hand-washing or dry-cleaning at a later time. Some clothes may require a specific type of wash cycle too, so put those aside.
Step #2: Place Your Delicates into a Wash Bag
While it’s also okay to wash delicates separately using the washing machine’s “delicate” cycle, a more efficient alternative is to put your delicates in a mesh wash bag, which you can purchase easily, so that it can go into the load with the rest of your clothing.
Step #3: Choose the Right Cycle
Nowadays, washing machines come with more options than ever before, usually by adjusting a dial through different types of cycles. But, in general, there are three cycles:
- “Normal” cycle: Perfect for the majority of your laundry.
- “Delicates” cycle: Uses a slower spinning/tumbling rate to prevent wear n’ tear of delicate materials. Can also be great for delicate fabrics but won’t get them as clean.
- “Permanent” cycle: Prevents clothing prone to wrinkling and pilling.
Step #4: Set the Temperature of the Water
If your washing machine requires that you set the spin cycle and temperature separately, then here is where you can choose between “cold”, “warm”, and “hot” water carefully.
- Cold water is best for delicate materials and clothing that has protein-based stains like blood, along with heavily dyed materials.
- Warm water is good for moderately dirty clothing items.
- Hot water is ideal for sturdy materials and clothing that’s very dirty.
Step #5: Apply Your Detergent
Now comes the fun part, adding your pods or powder detergent, along with any “add-ons” like a whitening product (if washing whites) or fabric softener. Some washing machines have a dispenser drawer with a compartment for your detergent, and others require that you pour the detergent directly into the drum before adding your load. How much detergent you should use mainly depends on the detergent itself, so read the instructions on the packaging.
Step #6: Load Your Laundry
Now, load the clothes into the washing machine. A load can fill up to about ¾ of the drum before it’s considered too crowded and unable to do a great job at cleaning everything. Some washing machines are front-loading, and some are top-loading.
Step #7: Turn on Your Washer
Now, all that you need to do is turn your washer on, and still keep an eye on it so that when the cycle is complete, you can move onto the drying stage.
What Not to Do When Using a Washing Machine
Whether you just bought a new washer machine or have had the same washer machine for years, no matter if it’s a front or top loading one, there are certain things you should avoid doing when using your washer machine.
- Don’t load clothing into your washing machine if there is anything in the pockets, such as tissues, loose change, etc. At best, these items can end up making their way into the rest of your laundry. At worst, they can damage your washing machine.
- Don’t use too much detergent. Otherwise, your clothes can come out feeling stiff, tacky or sticky.
- Don’t leave wet clothes in the washing machine for more than a couple of hours. Otherwise, they can develop mildew.
- Don’t put detergent or fabric softener directly onto clothing.
- Don’t overload your machine, or else your clothing won’t get clean.
- Don’t try to fix a broken or faulty washing machine. This is something that must be handled by a professional.
- Don’t ignore the need to clean your washing machine regularly. About twice a year, do a full cycle with hot water and a cleaning agent like white vinegar.
- Don’t use cheap commercial laundry products that are loaded with allergens and harsh additives. Use more natural, gentle products like the ones from Grab Green Home.