Three laundry ‘mistakes’ ruining your clothes in the wash

Susannah Constantine shares tips for saving money doing laundry

1. Not separating colours

Emma Rostron, general manager at One Less Thing, said: “It might seem like a chore, but you should always separate your clothes into whites, light colours, dark colours, and delicates.

“This will help you avoid colour transfer and ensure your clothes are washed at the right temperature as the wrong temperature can cause them to shrink or fade, and even result in clothes that are no longer the colour you intended.

“For example, washing red clothes with white clothes on a hot wash can leave everything pink.”

It can also help colours stay nice and bright, including white clothing which can often look dull over time.

2. Overloading the washing machine

It can be tempting to stuff the washing machine full to the brim, especially with high energy bills.

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However, this can result in poor washing performance and may even cause damage to the washing machine.

This is because the drum will become unbalanced or too heavy and be hard to spin.

Emma added: “A good rule of thumb is to fill the drum about three-quarters of the way, leaving enough space that you can pop the side of your hand in between the edge of the drum and your clothes.

“Overloading the machine can also cause clothes to rub against each other, which can cause them to wear out faster as well as form those annoying bobbles that make clothes look worn and old.”

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Matthew Morris, owner of Go Cleaners London, added: “Not only does this mean clothes rub against each other more, leading to wear and tear, but it can also make it difficult for the detergent and water to circulate properly, meaning some clothes won’t get a decent wash, if at all!

“So, if you have a large load, consider splitting it into two smaller loads instead of overloading the machine.

“The key isn’t to fill the drum to burst but to leave enough space for the clothes to slosh around.”

3. Using too much detergent

Using too much detergent can lead to excess suds and poor rinsing which, according to the expert, can leave clothes with a sticky film.

To determine how much to use, always check the back of the label as they will usually have a guide.

The more soiled clothes are, the more detergent they will generally need to get the stain out.

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