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How To Do Laundry

By A. MIRANDA, CBS Houston
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(credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Your spouse just left you at home eye balling a long list of honey do’s. On the top of that list is laundry! Your mom can’t do it. She just went to Florida and you have no money left to spend on a professional laundry service.

The most dreaded moment in your life has finally occurred, you will have to finally learn how to do the laundry!

Follow these instructions to keep it as painless as possible:

1. First, go collect all the dirty clothes.

2. Separate clothes into piles of whites, light colors, dark colors and one pile for red, purple and pink color clothing. Washing mixed color clothes could result in fabric dye bleeding onto your light colors so be very careful to keep the piles separated.

3. As you separate the clothing, empty pockets, turn lacy or frilly clothing inside out, and zip up zippers.

4. Clothes with stains should be treated with stain remover or rubbed with liquid laundry detergent, according to the detergent’s directions.

5. Set the washer’s water level on small, medium or large. Small levels are for just a few items, medium for a moderate sized load and large for heavier loads.

  • Next set the machine for delicate, regular, permanent press or heavy load settings. The delicate setting is for fragile fabrics such as lingerie. Regular is for cotton t-shirts and polyester pants. Permanent press is to help keep wrinkles to a minimum. Lastly, the heavy load settings would be for sturdy fabrics such as denim blue jeans.
  • Set the temperature according to the care labels on the clothing. Typically, dyed fabric, delicate lingerie, cotton and silk-like items require cold temperature water. Hot water will shrink cotton, denim, and fade colors. Warm can be used for items such as bath towels.
  • If you are unsure, use cold temperature settings. Cold settings won’t shrink fabrics, won’t fade or bleed colors. Cold settings can be used for any laundry load and will save the user money on their utility bill.

6. Turn the machine on. Pour in the detergent amount suggested by the product’s label. Detergent can be poured directly into the water or into the washing machine’s detergent cup.

7. Place your load of laundry into the washer machine.

8. Close the lid and allow the washer to complete the washing cycle. Most washing machines take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes to complete.

9. When the cycle is finished, remove clothing from washer. Fragile clothing, cotton, and jeans should be hung to dry on hangars or on a clothing rack, in a well ventilated place. Check fabric care labels for any special instructions and then place into the dryer. You can add dryer sheets or fabric softener at this time.

10. Set the appropriate temperature for the dryer. Settings found on most dryers include air fluff, medium heat, and high heat. Air fluff is for delicate, medium is for most fabrics and high heat is for heavier fabrics such as bath sheet towels.

11. Be sure to clean lint filters.

12. Close the lid and start the dryer.

13. While one load is drying, you can start another load in the washing machine.

14. When the dryer has completed its drying time, remove and fold clothing.

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