Author Topic: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?  (Read 8121 times)

Villanelle

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #50 on: November 28, 2021, 06:00:31 PM »
We line dry - easy to do if you live in Florida, although we always get pitying looks even from the neighbors:).
It is no longer a normal, accepted way of doing laundry - but I am good at being a contrarian, it doesn't bother either one of us.

Must be an American thing...still quite normal here. I've used my dryer twice in the last six months.
Years ago I swore never to post in another laundry thread since it was common for an American to moan that line drying made the towels stiff and hard, and not all soft and fluffy like the dryer. ( and it was always the poster's spouse who was unhappy).

Can't believe its gone so long and no-ones complained....must be progress after all;)
Iíll bite. It does make my towels crunchy. I still do it, though. But every now and then I toss them in the dryer to get them fluffy and soft again. How do I prevent this? I feel like Iím already using less detergent so I donít think itís too much detergent?

I find that even 5 minutes in the dryer before hanging them to dry solves the crunchiness issue. 

Yeah, Iíll also do that for a few minutes after they dry and it helps. I just wonder, for all the world that doesnít even have a dryer, there must be some way that doesnít use a dryer at all, right?

I think the other way is to just have crunchy sheets.  It's not like they don't still work!

Britan

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #51 on: November 30, 2021, 07:43:13 AM »
I think the other way is to just have crunchy sheets.  It's not like they don't still work!
True. Though I never get crunchy sheets. Just towels. And now that I think about it, only particular towels. Maybe thatís why. Our ďnicerĒ towels donít get so crunchy when line dried. Though the rags I use for cleaning spills (actually prefold cloth diapers that were never used as such) get really stiff. Since theyíre just cleaning rags, itís not like it particularly matters though.

Metalcat

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #52 on: November 30, 2021, 08:35:57 AM »
We use waffle towels and bamboo sheets, so no crunchiness with hang drying.

GuitarStv

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #53 on: November 30, 2021, 08:39:37 AM »
We use waffle towels and bamboo sheets, so no crunchiness with hang drying.

I don't like using waffles as towels.  The syrup always leaves me feeling sticky.

Metalcat

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #54 on: November 30, 2021, 08:42:10 AM »
We use waffle towels and bamboo sheets, so no crunchiness with hang drying.

I don't like using waffles as towels.  The syrup always leaves me feeling sticky.

To be fair, waffles, without syrup of course, would probably be rather absorbent.

But really, you are missing out if you have never used a waffle towel. I dislike normal towels now.

SimpleCycle

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #55 on: November 30, 2021, 10:10:36 AM »
Hot and warm water are very good solvents.  Modern HE washers don't use a lot of water, so the cold water savings is minimal, especially since you can use less laundry detergent when you use warmer water.

https://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/laundry.html

I used this laundry calculator and my personal inputs and a warm load is 42 cents and a cold load is 36 cents.  6 cents savings per load times 150 loads per year is $9.

On the other hand, the dryer alone costs 29 cents to run.  So forgoing one dryer load a week is $15 savings a year.

Of course you can do both, but I find my laundry is appreciably cleaner and has less soap build up with warm water wash.  You can see if soap is building up on your clothes by agitating them in warm water and seeing if the water becomes sudsy.

Edited to add: nothing drives home how important wash routines are to not causing buildup and grossness on cloth than doing 3+ continuous years of cloth diapering with a front loader.  I learned a lot about how to wash clothes to get them as clean as possible!
« Last Edit: November 30, 2021, 10:14:19 AM by SimpleCycle »

cannotWAIT

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #56 on: November 30, 2021, 08:00:33 PM »
I LOVE crunchy towels. They make me feel so clean! Sheets and towels are the best things for line drying. I don't especially love the way my clothes come out and I actively dislike what line drying does to knits so I still put those in the dryer.

Happy to hear that cold water washing doesn't save that much, because it just doesn't seem to work as well.

chemistk

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #57 on: December 01, 2021, 05:52:48 AM »
Hot and warm water are very good solvents.  Modern HE washers don't use a lot of water, so the cold water savings is minimal, especially since you can use less laundry detergent when you use warmer water.

https://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/laundry.html

I used this laundry calculator and my personal inputs and a warm load is 42 cents and a cold load is 36 cents.  6 cents savings per load times 150 loads per year is $9.

On the other hand, the dryer alone costs 29 cents to run.  So forgoing one dryer load a week is $15 savings a year.

Of course you can do both, but I find my laundry is appreciably cleaner and has less soap build up with warm water wash.  You can see if soap is building up on your clothes by agitating them in warm water and seeing if the water becomes sudsy.

Edited to add: nothing drives home how important wash routines are to not causing buildup and grossness on cloth than doing 3+ continuous years of cloth diapering with a front loader.  I learned a lot about how to wash clothes to get them as clean as possible!

I can get on board with this, but I'd also like to counter with two things -

1- Most of the time, when washing with cold, folks should fill the cup/scoop to the lowest line. Like anything, detergents are often more concentrated than they need to be to account for the small percentage of houses who have the worst/hardest water.

2 - There are many modern garments, especially synthetics/synthetic blends that specifically say to wash on cold. Generally speaking, the garments' appearance and often useful life will be extended by washing on the coldest & gentlest cycle. I'd estimate that of our clothes, 75% of my and my wife's clothes specify cold ONLY and at least 33% of our kids' do as well. Our approach is to wash on cold unless especially soiled, and then we will run a soak cycle on the washer with some booster & apply Fels-Naptha directly to the deep stains. We do run at least one warm and one hot cycle (more if there are extra towels), but that's with an eye for garment integrity and not really to do with energy savings.

GuitarStv

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #58 on: December 01, 2021, 08:36:26 AM »
If you're in the habit of throwing some detergent on top of clothing while washing with cold water and starting the machine, then yeah . . . your stuff isn't going to get as clean.  But I've never used more detergent with cold water washing than with warm, and not had any problems with clothes coming out still dirty as long as I follow this simple procedure:

- Half fill the washer with water
- Add detergent and swish it around to make sure it's mixed in correctly
- Load clothes
- Let clothes sit for a couple hours
- Run wash

slackmax

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #59 on: December 01, 2021, 09:21:34 AM »
I have been washing my clothes in cold water for about a year now. I do it because I think some rust in the washer is getting on my clothes (sometimes). I still get some rust stains, but not as bad as with hot water.

I'm not willing to buy a new washer since they all apparently are junk nowadays.
My old 1986 Hotpoint by GE keeps chugging away. Knock on wood.

I hand wash anything that I don't want to risk a rust stain on.

When I had a girl friend, she used to use the same washing machine, and never got the rust stains. Never found out what her secret was, but may have been using Borax powder added to the detergent.

Happy cold washing, everyone !

Oh, by the way, I sometimes use the drier, sometimes hang dry wet clothes.

rosarugosa

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #60 on: December 01, 2021, 02:17:39 PM »
True story:  I have washed all our laundry in cold water forever, except for towels.  I used to wash the towels in cold water until I read a certain true crime story.  One of the ways they figured out that the wife had killed her husband was that she had washed the towels in cold water (can't for the life of me remember how they knew this).  The line of thinking was that nobody washes towels in cold water, unless they killed someone, mopped up, and needed to get the blood out of the towels.  Oops.  So I've washed my towels in hot water ever since.

GuitarStv

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #61 on: December 01, 2021, 02:58:29 PM »
Story checks out.  I am constantly killing people and washing their blood out of stuff . . . that's why I started washing in cold.

Metalcat

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #62 on: December 01, 2021, 03:48:03 PM »
Story checks out.  I am constantly killing people and washing their blood out of stuff . . . that's why I started washing in cold.

Same.

MudPuppy

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #63 on: December 01, 2021, 06:10:57 PM »
Hydrogen peroxide is the ultimate blood stain removal chemical. Use cool to lukewarm water for best results.

Britan

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #64 on: December 01, 2021, 07:13:35 PM »
We use waffle towels and bamboo sheets, so no crunchiness with hang drying.
Actually yeah, those are the new towels we have that do not get crunchy. I didnít like them at first, the feel was weird since Iím used to plushy towels, but theyíre growing on me.

Villanelle

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #65 on: December 02, 2021, 12:00:33 PM »
If I've murdered someone in a way that I need to clean up and in a location where I have access to my personal linens, I'm using old towels and rags and burning them.  Who uses their good towels to clean up after a murder?  Below average for headwork, that. 


jinga nation

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #66 on: December 03, 2021, 11:03:19 AM »
Hydrogen peroxide is the ultimate blood stain removal chemical. Use cool to lukewarm water for best results.
so the wife was the OG killer... she used only cold water, with H2O2.
/s

jinga nation

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #67 on: December 03, 2021, 11:04:26 AM »
If I've murdered someone in a way that I need to clean up and in a location where I have access to my personal linens, I'm using old towels and rags and burning them.  Who uses their good towels to clean up after a murder?  Below average for headwork, that.
planning is critical.

GuitarStv

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #68 on: December 03, 2021, 01:23:46 PM »
If I've murdered someone in a way that I need to clean up and in a location where I have access to my personal linens, I'm using old towels and rags and burning them.  Who uses their good towels to clean up after a murder?  Below average for headwork, that.
planning is critical.

Criticism of my murder planning is a common cause of being murdered by me.

Metalcat

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #69 on: December 03, 2021, 01:42:22 PM »
If I've murdered someone in a way that I need to clean up and in a location where I have access to my personal linens, I'm using old towels and rags and burning them.  Who uses their good towels to clean up after a murder?  Below average for headwork, that.

BUT I CAN AFFORD IT!

It may not be mustachian, but I make 7 figures a year killing people, so using premium towels in my murder cleanup just adds to my happiness and won't negatively impact my FIRE plans. I'm so sick of killers being cheap and trying to face punch people into killing in this deprived, unpleasant manner, when they really should be focused on getting paid more per kill.

Who are you to judge me for using $1000 Hermes towels for my murder cleanup, it's a quality of life thing. It's not my fault you live a sad, deprived life of using literal garbage to clean up blood. If that's what frugality looks like, then fuck this place and MMM himself. There's more to life than saving money.

(sorry, couldn't resist)
« Last Edit: December 04, 2021, 06:13:38 AM by Malcat »

Villanelle

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #70 on: December 03, 2021, 04:44:59 PM »
My sister spent 20+ years as a coroner.  I've gotten many tips and tricks from her over the years.  None of them involve anything that would require the use of towels (Good Ones, or otherwise). 

/hypothetically of course

rosarugosa

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #71 on: December 04, 2021, 05:07:25 AM »
If I've murdered someone in a way that I need to clean up and in a location where I have access to my personal linens, I'm using old towels and rags and burning them.  Who uses their good towels to clean up after a murder?  Below average for headwork, that.


Well she did get caught.

MudPuppy

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #72 on: December 04, 2021, 06:26:11 AM »
Hydrogen peroxide is the ultimate blood stain removal chemical. Use cool to lukewarm water for best results.
so the wife was the OG killer... she used only cold water, with H2O2.
/s

She never wanted you to find out like this.

MarciaB

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #73 on: December 06, 2021, 05:10:11 PM »
I dunno. I have been using tap cold for many many years and only use half the detergent recommended.  Clothes are clean *shrug*

Me too. And I never buy detergent in plastic bottles because I'm trying (not successfully either) to get rid of plastic...sigh.

aetheldrea

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #74 on: December 06, 2021, 06:46:53 PM »
I used to think that clothes that said to wash in cold were just a PITA, but then I read the Patagonia guyís book and he said that they design their clothes specifically to be able to be washed in cold water to save energy, by not having to heat up water to wash them.

Now I just wash everything in cold.

Cranky

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #75 on: December 07, 2021, 10:40:21 AM »
Iím more surprised that some people donít generally use a cold water wash. Itís been my understanding that in the US detergents have been designed for that for decades.

eyesonthehorizon

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Re: Anyone washing clothes with cold water?
« Reply #76 on: December 07, 2021, 02:04:21 PM »
Tap-cold with a soak, little detergent, line dry (followed by a couple minutes on tumble if something's really crunchy, but I rarely bother.) A cup of vinegar or oxyclean occasionally, for smelly or stained loads.

Stuff comes out clean, & for exactly the reasons Malcat said, there's no real stress about normal bacterial loads. Remember that detergent itself is rough on microbes (including covid-19), and the hot water line into your washing machine is cooler than would cook most nasty bacteria anyway so there's no advantage in treating them to the jacuzzi setting. If it's really befouled and needs sanitizing, that's when bleach might be a good choice. Otherwise, UV sanitizes & wind softens for free if you can dry things outdoors; the longevity of your wardrobe will thank you, if the carbon implications or financial savings don't speak loudly enough.

Running the dishwasher usually follows loading the dishwasher in my household, so I just rinse bigger particles off in the sink with the hot tap as I load the washer, & then any delicate stemware/ my hands get washed, so the dishwasher will be using actually-hot water anyway. Even the minimum settings get things pretty spotless as a result.