Troy the magician shares best ways to save money on laundry
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Laundry is second-nature to many, with people sticking to the same routine for years. However, making small changes to this routine could help families save little and often over a long period of time. According to experts, making simple changes can also help your washing machine last longer.
Les Roberts, content manager at Bionic, explained: “One way to cut down on costs when using a washing machine is to check the efficiency of your device.
“The energy rating should be printed on the energy label of your washing machine device and will be ranked from G-A with A being the most efficient model.
“The more efficient models cut the KwH used per cycle significantly, so running costs will be much lower.
“Generally speaking, older machines tend to be less energy efficient, so it might be worth upgrading if you’ve had your washer for more than 10 years.”
Depending on which tariff you are on, using the machine at certain times of the day could be cheaper. According to the expert, this is if you are on a time of use or off-peak tariff.
The price of energy will be lower at times when the grid is under less pressure and demand is at its lowest. Les said this tends to fall between 10pm-8pm.
The pro added: “Costs can sometimes be 50 percent lower during these hours so it can definitely be worth doing your load overnight and taking advantage of these off peak prices.”
David Palmer, LG’s Senior Product Specialist of Home Appliances, said: “Washing machines are more energy efficient when performing at lower temperatures for longer durations.
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“The temperature you choose to wash your clothes at has an impact on your energy usage. If you choose to wash at 20C or lower, you can minimise the amount of energy your washing machine consumes.”
Many detergent brands these days have formulated their detergent pods, powder and liquid to be effective in cold washes.
Ariel, one of the UK’s most popular brands, said washing garments on temperatures as low as 20C or 30C will protect colours from running, while also minimising shrinkage.
It is also best for refreshing clothes which are not too dirty, like seasonal clothing you need to freshen up. When it comes to heavily soiled garments, towels or bedding, Britons should opt for a hotter wash.
This should ideally be above 40C or even 60C to help kill off germs and remove mould. But if it’s only a lightly soiled item, Ariel recommends going for a cooler temperature.
The expert added: “Overdosing with detergent can also affect your washing machine’s energy efficiency.
“Detergent overdoing results in increased work for the machine, decreased wash performance and hinders your overall savings as it can result in clothing damage and the need for replacement items.”
According to Deyan Dimitrov, CEO of Laundryheap, there is a “common misconception” that the dirtier the item or bedding is, the more detergent it needs.
However, this could be doing “more harm than good”, especially to bed sheets. The expert explained: “Not only can too much detergent stain your sheets (especially if they’re white), but it can also wear down their fibres, eventually causing holes and tears.
“Instead of detergent, I would recommend using half a cup of baking soda and vinegar to wash your bedsheets.”
David also recommended making sure you are being “economic” with your washing. This means filling the machine up fully, rather than doing lots of half loads. However, filling the washing machine up too much could mean some items of clothing don’t get washed properly and the detergent pod doesn’t dissolve.
The expert added: “Also turn your washing machine off when you are not using it, so it is not wasting energy on standby and make sure to regularly clean your appliance.”
Regularly cleaning the washing machine will help to avoid a build-up of limescale and mould occurring in the drawers and drum which could affect the appliance’s efficiency.
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