As the warmer weather approaches my mind always turns to thinking about what more I can do to save money and cut my energy bills. I like to use a lot less energy during Spring and Summer so I can afford to use a little more during the Winter months.
If you have a family then you will know that one of your highest energy costs comes from washing and drying your clothes, towels and bedding. Even more so if you have babies and toddlers who require several outfit changes a day.
Here’s my guide to cutting those costs in five easy steps.
Is It Dirty?
Before you toss those clothes in the laundry basket ask yourself if they could be re-worn. Do the sniff test if you must. Not only will this cut your wash loads in half it will also prolong the life of your clothes. Over washing can cause damage to the fibres and fade colours quicker.
Fill It Up & Turn It Down
This is such an obvious one, but only wash when you have a full load. If you need to wash something urgently and only have a small load then make use of the speed wash cycle on your washing machine. It’s time to get the manual out and learn what those numbers and symbols mean.
Also turn the temperature dial down. Unless you are washing a heavily soiled load then 30 degrees will still get your clothes clean. You can even buy some washing powders that work at 20 degrees.
Don’t Be Brand Loyal
Shop around for the best priced detergent and softener (unless you have allergies or skin problems). Even better make your own detergent. You can find lots of information about this online.
I have never been brand loyal when it comes to detergent. I always check out the offers before I go shopping. Don’t dismiss the store brand detergent it’s often just as good and only a fraction of the price.
Watch Your Doses
Take the does that the manufacturer recommends then half it. You don’t need half as much detergent as you think you do. Your clothes will be just as clean and your product will last twice as long so it’s a win-win situation.
Think About How You Dry
Of course the most obvious solution to cutting laundry costs is to line dry. I’m a huge fan of this method but living in rainy England means that sometimes using my tumble dryer is unavoidable so I try to use it sparingly and more effectively.
Make sure you always remove the lint from the lint trap. Leaving it to build up reduces the warm air flow around the clothes which increases the drying time. And we all know that tumble dryers devour electricity.
Also make sure you shake out your clothes (especially socks) before you put them in the dryer. There’s nothing worse than finding a wet rolled up sleeve in a pile of dry clean washing.