‘Cheapest time’ to use your washing machine – and when it ‘costs most’

How to clean a washing machine effortlessly

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Washing machines are essential for cleaning our clothes, bedding, towels and soft furnishings. However, with energy bill hikes at the forefront of people’s minds, many Britons are looking for ways to keep their costs down while using their appliances.

Gene Fitzgerald, home water treatment expert at BOS has shared her advice exclusively with Express.co.uk for saving money when using washing machines.

She said: “Christmas is expensive enough at the best of times but, with the current energy crisis, festive funds are tighter than ever.

“How can you avoid running into the red when running your washing machine?”


According to some experts, energy prices are at their lowest between 10pm and 5am.

READ MORE: ‘Most common’ energy myths to avoid to ‘save money’ on bills

While most people are asleep at this time, it is possible to schedule some washing machines to start running in the early hours.

By the time you wake up, your washing will be clean and ready to hang up and dry. Gene said this is one of the “simplest ways” to save cash while putting on a load of washing.

“Your washing machine will cost you the most between 4pm and 7pm and the cheapest time to do your laundry is between 10pm and 5am,” she added.

Keep temperatures cool

Reducing the temperature of your wash can have a significant impact on your energy bills.

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Even reducing temperatures from 40C to 30C can really help keep costs down.

Don’t use powder detergents

While powder can be cheaper and last longer, it’s often not as effective for removing stains, according to the experts.

Washing with powder may mean you have to do more prep to remove stains or wash clothes again if stains are not removed during the first wash.

Gene said: “Liquid detergents are the most effective at removing stains and are therefore the most cost effective, allowing you to do less washing at lower temperatures.

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“If you do have items with stubborn stains, rub a little undiluted liquid detergent onto the affected area and leave for an hour or so before placing it in the washing machine.”


Hard water can increase energy bills and even damage washing machines. Those living in hard water areas may experience this more.

Homeowners who live in a hard water area can invest in a special hard water detergent which will allow them to wash at a lower temperature and save cash.

Hard water can also damage your washing machine which means components may need replacing more often. Considering a water softener could help in the long run.

Mrs Hinch demonstrates how to clean washing machine draw

Hard water can also cause a build-up of limescale in washing machines. This can be removed using white vinegar.

Gene added: “We’re all keeping an eye on our bills at the moment, even on essential activities like doing the laundry.

“By being mindful of when and how you use your machine, you can help to avoid any nasty surprises when your electricity bill arrives.”

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