5 Tips For Saving Money and Energy on Your Laundry

Believe it or not, I like to do the laundry in our household. My fiance does the cooking and I do the wash. It’s kind of a compromise. Some people would call that weird but I just call it helpful. I will admit though, that I am kind of weird about my laundry. I have a set way of doing things and I do not trust anyone else to do it. Anyway, now that we are living in our own place, we have to think about saving money and energy. Here are some tips that we use in order to cut down on those two items:

1. Brrrrrr….That’s Cold!

Yep, you know what I mean. Washing in cold water saves quite a bit of money and energy. You don’t have to waste energy and money heating up the water. We wash all of our laundry in cold water. Use a pretreatment product for your tough stains instead of hot water.

2. Less is More

I’ve heard that using less detergent still gets your clothes clean. I have been going off of that philosophy for a few years now and my clothes are always clean. So, my advice to you is to use half of the recommended amount of detergent when washing. There is such a thing as over washing your clothes! This will help save you plenty of money. Just think, you will only have to buy detergent half as much now!

3. Concentrate on the Next Tip

Buying highly concentrated detergent can save you a bundle. While it costs a little more up front, it can help you make less trips to the store. We use All Small and Mighty concentrated detergent. It is 3x more concentrated than regular detergent and comes in a small bottle. If you but it at Amazon, you can get 8 bottles for a lot less than buying 8 bottles at the store. Combine this tip with the previous one and save some money!

4. Fill It to the Brim

This is probably one that most people know and follow. Don’t do a load of laundry until you can do a full load. This one is probably the hardest one for me to keep up with. I guess it’s because I don’t have that many clothes (or ones I still wear) and I need them washed more frequently. This can also be a problem for people who need a certain outfit for work. When I used to work at Sears in high school, I needed to wear a black shirt and tan pants. I did not have that many items that worked and instead of buying more clothes, I did the wash more frequently.

5. Get it While it’s Hot!

I am very weird about getting the laundry out of the dryer the second that it is done. I even set an alarm on my phone! The reason? I hate ironing! Taking the clothes out of the drying as soon as it’s done makes sure that wrinkles do not have time to form. My fiance thinks that I am weird for doing this, but I feel great not having to iron. That means less electricity for the iron!

These are just a few tips that we use. I know that there are many other ways to cut costs, but living in an apartment complex, they are just not available to us. Anyone have anymore unique cost cutting ideas?

10 thoughts on “5 Tips For Saving Money and Energy on Your Laundry

  1. Yana

    Good tips. My husband also likes to do the laundry. We only do full loads, and don’t let them sit in the dryer. We don’t wash outerwear that is not dirty, meaning not necessarily every time an item is worn. Some people do that, and that wears out the clothing faster. Same with bath towels used to dry off a clean body. I imagine this is harder with a larger household, but it’s just the two of us. Another tip that isn’t necessarily cost-saving, but convenient, is that when an item must be hand-washed, I put it in the car to dry. Living in California with the car parked in the sun, this makes for a quick dryer – and afterwards, the car smells like a laundry room 😉

  2. Mrs. Accountability

    We don’t even have hot water running to our washer. You didn’t mention specifically, but I do see that you are using a liquid detergent. Powdered detergent only flakes up and causes a mess when the water is freezing cold. In the summer here, the water is fairly warm all the time, so okay to use a powder. It is great that you are so dedicated to your laundry. Your fiancée must love that! She’s a lucky gal!

  3. Caley

    Hey Adam-
    I saw your website on Facebook, so I started reading. My finace and I are living a small apartment in South Korea right now and here- there are no clothes dryers. I’m sure they exist in this country, but I haven’t seen any and we don’t use one. We just hang up everything. It takes longer to dry and sometimes the clothes are a bit wrinkled (and we don’t iron anyway), but it must be cheaper! Well that’s my tip- I don’t have much choice in the matter, but I’d imagine it could help others save some money.

  4. lulugal11

    I bought a drying rack and use that to dry my clothes. You might want to look at that in the summer. Just put the clothes on the rack and you are done.

    If you hang them on hangers while wet they dry on the hangers hanging off the rack and don’t need ironing.

    I have a spare room and dry clothes in the winter as well….but you don’t need to be that extreme.

  5. niv

    I agree with Caley and lulugal11, we hang our cloths outside during the summer and on a rack indoors during the winter. If you give the cloths a good stretch you can get out all the wrinkles from the wash and after they are dry they don’t need to be ironed.

  6. Pinyo

    I wish I can convince my family on the half detergent philosophy. Trust me, I tried.

    Here are two more tips. 1. Pick quick or “lightly soiled” cycle. 2. Throw in a dry towel into your dryer for a quicker drying time.

  7. Adam Post author

    @Caley – Hope you are enjoying Korea! Not sure if I would like the idea of not having a dryer. I guess you have to work with what you got!

    @Pinyo – I am going to give the dry towel a try. I have heard of that before but I never really remembered about it when it came time to dry.

  8. the weakonomist

    I have a very simple way to save on laundry – don’t do laundry. I’ve done the math on the “clean to dirty” ratio of per use items. I can get 3-4 uses out of work clothes before they are in need to cleaning again. It sounds gross until you try it.

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  10. JMK

    Electricity is charged a different rates at different times of day in our area so running laundry (particularly the dryer) in off peak times can save 50%. I load the machine before I head to bed and set it to start at 4am. When I get up at 5:30 I move it to the dryer while I wait for the morning coffee to brew and have it folded before the rate goes up at 7am.

    I also use our toaster oven whenever possible. I don’t know what the savings are, but it’s got to be cheaper to run a little oven rather than the big oven to bake a meatloaf or small casserole.

    Make intentional leftovers. When cooking pasta or rice we always cook extra so be used in a different meal the next night. It not only saves time the second night, but it’s one less burner running to repeat the same task. When cooking onions and ground beef for spaghetti sauce, just double everything and freeze half for another night.

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