5 Laundry Mistakes Everyone Makes

Fix Laundry Mistakes

Never make these laundry
mistakes again


Laundry mistake #1: Skipping out on stains

Listen, we get it: Stains happen–and forgetting them happens too. But tossing that chocolate-dribbled shirt into the laundry basket and treating the stain days later is a sure way to end up with a ruined piece of clothing. In fact, when it comes to stains and removing them, time and success are inversely related: The quicker you get to a stain, the more success you'll have removing it. Pre-treat spills and accidents, from grass to wine and more, as soon as possible with the right product (and follow label directions, too).

Laundry mistake #2: Over-or-under-doing detergent

Too many suds and your washing machine will have a harder time rinsing soap out of clothes. Too few and the dirt may escape (and stay on your clothes) through the wash cycle. Instead, dig up your appliance manual and follow its detergent recommendations–including type–to the letter. (And if you have hard water, know that will affect detergent levels, too.)

Laundry mistake #3: Making your appliances work too hard

Maintenance may not seem related to a finely tuned laundry routine, but alas, it is. Of course you should empty the lint filter in the dryer after each cycle–but you should also detach the dryer hose (located at the back of the appliance) each year and clean it out with a lint brush. In addition, run the "clean" cycle on your washing machine according to model directions. Finally, regularly clean the outsides and doors of both washing machine and dryer.

Read Clothing Label

Laundry mistake #4: Looking past the labels

Many clothes can and should be washed together. But some have specific care directions, and you'll only hasten a garment's demise by ignoring them. So if it says to wash pants inside out, do so. If it says to line dry–do that too.

Laundry mistake #5: Skimming over sorting

You probably grew up sorting lights from darks, and figured that was good enough–right? Wrong. Take cold water: Many people assume that it is best for each and every piece of clothing–no shrinkage, no bleeding colors. But that's not true. Some clothes actually need water that's warm or even hot in order to get really clean. Instead, sort by recommended water temperature (cold, warm, hot)–and then lights and darks.

Read Clothing Label

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