Last week when I showed you the new paint color in our laundry room, I mentioned that I would share some of my laundry tips with you. I consider myself a laundry expert, thanks to my late mother-in-law. She raised five active children who grew up on a farm, and you can imagine how dirty they must have gotten playing in the fields and doing their chores. She was a pro at getting out grit, grime, and stains, and she taught me the time-saving laundry tips she had. I am so happy to share what she taught me along with some tips I have used on my own over the years.
Make sure your equipment is in top working order. I clean my washing machine with distilled vinegar every month after a repair man recommended this step to me. It clears out the gunk that can build up from daily usage. Remember to clean out the lint trap in your dryer after every use, and keep the dryer hose and vent cleaned out. Some people complain about front loading washers having a musty smell. When I am not using it, I leave the door of my washer open about one inch, and there has never been a problem with odors.
Have a variety of spot and stain removers on hand. I have a lot of luck using Shout and/or Pine Sol. Those two products give me the most success, and this is not a sponsored post. I can pretty much get out any stain by spraying it with Shout and then rubbing on some Pine Sol straight out of the bottle. If those two don’t work, then I soak the stained item in Oxi-Clean. The stains that give me the biggest challenge are mustard and chocolate. I also have a chlorine bleach for whites, a regular detergent, and a delegate detergent for items that get gentle treatment.
Have a sink installed or have a pan for soaking . Sometimes those stained clothes need to soak in order to get them clean. This can be done in a bucket or plastic pan that you set on top of the washer or dryer, or it can be done in a sink. I realize everyone doesn’t have room for a sink in the laundry room, so just buy a bucket or dishpan. Either will work just fine.
Color code the laundry baskets. I wrote a post about this a few years ago, and it sure is a time saver. Our laundry room is on the second floor, and we take our dirty clothes right to the laundry room and toss them into the appropriate basket. I also have a special basket for my delicate items that need the gentle cycle. This simple step means I don’t have to sort clothes when I am doing the laundry. That’s a major time saver. Plus, I don’t have piles of clothes on the floor waiting for their turn in the washer.
Remove clothes from the dryer as soon as possible. My oh my, this is a major time saver,too. If you take clothes out of the dryer right away and either hang them up or fold them, they won’t get as wrinkled. Then you won’t have to spend as much time ironing them.
Have a special place to hang clothes. I have certain pieces of clothes that never go in the dryer. Jeans, leggings, knit tops, and my cotton blouses always go on a hanger as soon as the wash cycle is finished. I hang them on a special rod in the laundry room where they air dry. This rod is the same one that I use for hanging the clothes that are right out of the dryer. It is a total game changer for me. Mr. Right installed it using a metal pipe, and I LOVE it. If you only do one of these tips, this is the one to do.
Have a good iron, and keep it clean. I bought this iron a few years ago, and it has been worth every penny. I only use distilled water in it, and I always drain any remaining water before putting it away in the cabinet. About once every six months, I clean it with distilled vinegar. Just like on the washing machine, this little step cleans out any residue that has built up inside.
Hang linens outside when possible. If you love the smell of sheets and towels that have dried outdoors in the sun, then you aren’t alone. Not everyone has the space to hang on outdoor clothesline, but if you have a place to install one, and if you have the time to do it, then by all means, hang your linens in the great outdoors.
Have a table for folding clothes. I always keep a table in our laundry room. It is nice to have when I am folding clothes or when I need a place to put things I have just ironed. If your laundry area has a space for it, then find a table. This marble topped table was once an old sewing machine, and my mother gave it to me. It sure comes in handy.
Hang a stain removal chart. I don’t do this because I can get out a stain, but if you find it challenging, there are plenty of charts, like this one, available on line to download for free. They tell you how to get out certain stains.
That’s it for my tips. Do you have any that you would like to add? I always love to learn new tips that will make my housekeeping chores easier.
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