Last month we talked about ways that you can extend the lives of your washer & dryer. Your machines should last for a decade, at the least, but there are specific things you’re doing that are taking years off your washer & dryer’s lives. So, what should you avoid? Read on!
1. Overrunning - using your machines too often will cause them to break down quicker and more often. Sticking to approximately 8 loads a week should keep your machine’s life expectancy in the low double digits.
2. Detergent - we often think more is better but when it comes to detergent you actually can overdo things. (Those measuring cups aren’t just recommendations!) More soap leads to more suds which makes your washer more likely to overflow, increases wear and tear on the washing machine’s pump and motor, and requires greater energy to wash clothes because the machine automatically adds extra rinses + pauses to break down excess suds. Not to mention, more suds does not equal cleaner laundry. Instead, it can lead to stains & residue on your clothing and leave behind odors in your machine. Yuck!
3. Dryer Sheets - like the other things on this list this one comes down to overuse as well. See, dryer sheets have a waxy layer that melts while in the dryer. Using too many of them gums things up (particularly the lint trap). In fact, every couple of months you should remove your lint trap and soak it in sudsy water to make sure it’s really clean and not just clean of lint.
4. Things That Don’t Belong - are you consistently washing & drying things that shouldn’t actually be in your washer or dryer? When something says it should be hand-washed, it’s not necessarily just for the sake of the clothing. For example, when it comes to lingerie, hooks and underwire can damage your washing machine’s drum. On other clothing types, zippers can scratch up the interior of machines. Simply be careful when it comes to items like these and if possible avoid putting them in your machines. They’ll thank you!
5. Pocket Leftovers - do you have a bad habit of leaving things in the pockets of your clothing, then throwing them in the wash? Bad idea. Whether it’s tissues, gum, coins, or dollar bills, these items can clog up your washer’s drain and damage your dryer’s inner workings. Turning all your pockets inside out before putting them in the washing machine is a good way to double-check that they’re clear.
6. Things That Don’t Belong Part Deux - when it comes to your dryer in particular there are just some items that shouldn’t be in there. If you’re wanting to dry something other than clothing, towels, or bedding, you need to check your manufacturer’s guide and make sure you can actually do so. This includes items such as pillows & bath mats. They might contain rubber of some kind which can be a very bad idea in the dryer.
7. Not Reading Instructions - if you ask a laundry machine manufacturer what the number one thing a person can do to keep their machines running well is they’ll tell you it’s to read the manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining the machine. It’s a simple thing, really, but a lot of the time we dive in with new appliances without reading instructions first and as a result we take years off their life.
8. Not Sorting - we get it, sorting laundry can be annoying and you may not see the point since washing your whites with blue jeans doesn’t necessarily equal tragedy these days. But as it turns out that’s not the only reason you should be sorting. Drying things of unequal weight together (ie towels & shirts) is actually bad for your dryer because it can throw off the balance of the machine. So, always sort things out!
There are plenty of ways you could be doing damage to your washer & dryer and plenty of ways to fix the problem. Avoid the above and your washer/dryer should have a long & happy life (keeping you happy in return!). It’s the small things that are important so keep them in mind and, as always, give us a call when you need a hand!
We're the experts for professional Northern NJ Dryer Vent Cleaning & repair! Give us a call at 201-345-0055 so Northern NJ Dryer Vent Wizard can help you save energy, time, and money. Some of the towns we service include: Bergen County, NJ Essex County, NJ Passaic County, NJ Morris County, NJ Ramsey, NJ and the surrounding NY Metro areas!