How to Wash Clothes Cheaply using Frugal Ideas
Washing clothes takes up both time and energy so is a good target for investigation using frugal ideas. Lets look at how we can save time and money every week….mostly by using common sense! Read on to learn how to wash clothes efficiently.
Ditch the Nuts!
Soap Nuts really don't seem to do much good in a washing machine, but may work ok with hand washing. Probably better to not waste your money as they are expensive.
There are lots of adverts on the internet and at Health food shops telling you how to wash clothes with special nuts so the MeanyGoat went and got some to try out. Salvo nuts, or soap nuts, from India and Nepal are being widely touted as the green and frugal way to wash your clothes cheaply. After trying them for quite a while the MeanyGoat concludes that while these nuts may work well in traditional hand washing they have no apparent effect when used in a normal machine wash! On the plus side they can be re-used several times and are really sticky so you feel that they are doing “something”! On balance, don’t waste your money on soap nuts, better to choose a good quality, non-allergic product and use half the recommended dose. Always be a MeanyGoat with portion sizes!!
When to Wash Clothes:
We will look at HOW TO WASH CLOTHES in a minute, but first think about WHEN TO WASH CLOTHES. Not such a simple question really. When I was a kid I was issued with a clean shirt, a vest, a pair of underpants and a pair of socks each Monday morning…..fresh for the whole week! These days we wear a shirt for an evening out and then throw it straight in the wash basket. So which extreme is right?
Common sense tells you that you only need to wash clothes when they are actually dirty or they smell bad. Clearly socks, underwear, sports wear and gardening or other clothes used for “real work” come top of the list for regular washing. The rest of your clothes you can re-use several times. Excessive washing of clothes will fade the colors and prematurely age the fabric. Most stuff doesn’t need to washed half as often as you think..
How to Wash Clothes the MeanyGoat Way:
Follow these simple rules to learn how to wash your clothes at the right time so you don’t go around stinking like a goat, but equally you save yourself time and money…..
- Wash Clothes When they SMELL or when you can see DIRT: If they don’t look dirty and they don’t smell then they skip the wash!
- Air Clothes AFTER Use: After wearing a shirt hang it up on a coat hanger and let it “air” for a day. In the summer put it outside in the sun. You can also air clothes in the bathroom after a bath (a rare event I hope!) or after a 3 minute shower (the correct frugal alternative…) since the steam will help refresh the clothes. Works well for shirts, dresses, blouses, jumpers, trousers etc. Use this method to double the interval between washing.
- Always use a FULL Load: When running a washing machine it is more efficient to run it full even if it has a half load option…but don’t overfill since that can damage the machine
- Use the 30C Temperature Setting: For a “normal wash” ie clothes that are often not really dirty at all, bung them in the washing machine at the minimum temperature
- Use HALF the Recommended amount of Detergent: Buy a decent quality, non-allergenic product (powder or liquid) and use half the amount that it says on the packet. Why? The manufacturer wants you to use it up quickly so that you buy more….
- Use the Fastest Spin Available: This gets maximum amount of moisture out of your clothes taking with it any residual pong…and of course the dryer they come out of the machine the quicker they will dry overall
How to Wash Clothes with the Secret Ingredient:
What secret ingredient? For a cold wash of really stinky sports kit then add a wine glass full of vinegar to the wash as well as your normal amount of detergent. You will really notice the difference and even the worst socks will come out smelling fresh….and don’t worry, they won’t come out smelling of pickled onions either!
Ditch the Tumble Dryer and always dry your clothese outside if you can!
So you get the idea now about how to wash clothes, but the next step in the process is drying the buggers. I guess some people with large families and loads of children might be able to justify running a tumble dryer on the grounds that it drys the clothes quickly so that they can be re-used the same day. In this way fewer clothes are needed. However, for most people the tumble dryer should be avoided since it is expensive to run and clothes are always better aired afterwards anyway so you are just introducing an unnecessary step in your washing process. Dry clothes outside on a line or clothes horse whenever you can….this is the quickest and simplest method that has been in use for centuries and has the great benefit of really giving the clothes a good airing so that they are nice and fresh. In bad weather hang them up on a clothes horse inside in the warmest room while you are out at work. Try to resist cloaking all the radiators with wet sheets since this will force them to dry rapidly and can cause excessive condensation and dampness in the house.
Start Saving Time and Money Now!
By now you should have picked up enough tips about how to wash clothes so that will enable you to save between 25% and 50% of your time and money. How so? Always run the machine full, only wash the clothes that need it, use less detergent and normally run the wash at at 30C. How to wash clothes….Pretty simple really!!
Print This Post