Answers to your most frequently asked laundry based questions
Believe it or not, there are some people (past University age) who still have trouble in the laundry department. And if you’re here then, and we’re not making assumptions but, you very well could be one of them.
Fear not! Even if you’re ‘asking for a friend’, we’ve got you covered with these answers to the most frequently asked questions about laundry…
Laundry based FAQs
Q. Do I need to separate darks and lights?
A. Yes. It’s that simple.
Separating laundry into light and dark loads (even colours too!), will prolong the life span of the items you are washing. And while mixing washables doesn’t necessarily mean they will be ruined immediately, unless that brand new red sock makes its way into your white load, there will be a noticeable difference in whites very quickly if washed with darker items.
Bottom line, want to keep whites white? Separate.
Q. What is the best washing machine temperature?
A. Nowadays, 30 degrees is the most used washing machine temperature – as opposed to 40 degrees historically. This is because, due to energy efficiency requirements and environmental considerations, manufacturers had a need to develop effective washing processes with less heat.
This means that 30 degrees is now generally suitable for everyday washes. That being said, it is not always best, depending on what you are washing.
When understanding what is specifically best for the item(s) you are washing, check the labels. Additionally, different models from different manufacturers have unique settings so get to know what you wash most and understand your washing machine’s facilities in line with that to get the most out of it.
Q. How do I choose which washing machine cycle to use?
A. The cycle you choose will be determined by several things:
- Materials in the load
- Size of the load
- How dirty the items in the load are.
If you have a regular sized load of standard materials which aren’t heavily soiled, an everyday quick wash at 30 degrees will suffice – most modern machines come with this facility.
Additionally, if you have a similar load but only half of a full load, most machines will also allow you to select the everyday quick wash cycle and ‘half load’, to let it know to use less water.
Things get a little more complicated with delicate materials and rich colours though, this is when you have to think about water temperature.
The good news is, the washing machine will do most of this work for you. Check for its delicate and colour based cycles, use those and you can’t go wrong. Additionally, most machines will have their own unique functions to support these things.
The bad news is, you will still need to separate the loads and check labels as washing machines can’t read… yet.
Q. What do clothes laundry label symbols mean?
A. The symbols on clothes labels are there to help you care for your garments properly, so, in addition to knowing your machine and separating loads, you can get even more direct with washing, drying and care conditions for specific items.
Most common symbols explained:
- Basin with water: this symbol means the item is machine washable
- If it features a number, this is the optimum/max temperature for washing that garment
- If it features a cross through, do not wash the item in the washing machine
- Triangle: this symbol relates to bleaching
- If it features a cross, do not bleach
- If it features two lines, you may use non-chlorine bleach
- If it is clear, bleaching is allowed
- Circle: this symbol relates to tumble drying
- A clear circle means tumble drying allowed at any heat
- A circle with one dot means tumble dry on low heat
- A circle with three dots means safe to tumble dry on high heat
- A circle with a cross through means do not tumble dry
- Iron: this symbol relates to ironing
- One dot: max 110 degree
- Two dots: max 150 degrees
- Three dots: max heat allowed
- Cross through: do not iron
Q. Do tumble dryers shrink clothes?
A. If the garment isn’t tumble dryer suitable, then the result of doing so could be shrinking. Another outcome of tumble drying an unsuitable item is misshaping.
This is because tumble dryers use heat and the heat can have an adverse effect on the garment.
Always check the garment label.
Q. Can washing machines shrink clothes?
A. Similarly to tumble dryers, washing machines can shrink or alter the shape of clothing if they aren’t suitable for machine washing, or they are washed on a high temperature which is too high.
To stay safe, check the label.
Bonus question! Which washing machine drawer should I use?
Believe it or not, we get asked this a lot so we have created this handy guide.
Here to help
At DB Domestics we specialise in laundry appliances. We have thousands of freestanding and integrated washing machines, washer dryers and tumble dryers on display across our website and flagship showroom in Eastbourne where our team of friendly appliance experts waiting to help you in person or on the phone.