Revealed: The EXACT amount of time that’s acceptable to leave wet clothes in the washing machine – before you need to clean them again
- Experts reveal maximum time you can leave wet clothes in the washing machine
- Damp clothes can be left overnight for up to 12 hours without needing to re-wash
- Television personality Martha Stewart agreed it’s ‘perfectly alright’ to do so
- Australian technician warned not to close washing machine door when unused
Forgetting your laundry in the washing machine is a common occurrence in many households, which usually results in having to put on another cleaning cycle.
But now experts have revealed the acceptable amount of time you can leave your damp, wet clothes in the washing machine without the need to re-wash.
According to home economist spokesperson from the Whirlpool Institute of Fabric Science, Lucinda Ottusch, laundry can be left for up to 12 hours in the household appliance.
Over an eight to 12 hour period it is unlikely an unwanted odour will form, and even more unlikely for bacterial mildew to develop.
Now experts have revealed the acceptable amount of time you can leave your damp, wet clothes in the washing machine without needed to re-wash
Whirlpool experts: The best practices for doing laundry
Choose the Correct Temperature for the Color
Hot water is best to keep white loads bright, while you should set the washer to warm for a load of colors. To help prevent dark fabrics from fading, use the cold water cycle.
Select the Appropriate Additives
Base your additive (such as bleach or fabric softener) selection on your detergent. If you use power detergent, add a power additive. Liquid additives should be used with liquid detergent.
Utilise the Tools and Features on Your Washing Machine
To save time in the laundry room, adjust your washing machine according to the soil level and size of the load. For increased water efficiency, high efficiency machines have sensors that regulate the amount of water based on the load size.
Source: Whirlpool Fabric Science
Celebrity homemaker Martha Stewart (pictured) supported the claim after speaking on America’s television show, Today. ‘I would say that it’s perfectly alright to leave [the washing] overnight,’ she said
Celebrity homemaker, writer and television personality Martha Stewart supported the claim after speaking on America’s morning show, Today.
When asked about the debatable topic and whether it’s okay to leave clothes in the washing machine overnight, Martha said: ‘I would say that it’s perfectly alright. I mean don’t leave it for a long time – don’t leave it for a week’.
‘If you get up in the morning and throw it in the dryer, it should probably be okay,’ she said.
Martha also mentioned one way to determine if you need to wash a second time is whether a ‘pungent’ smell is present.
‘One way you can kind of tell is if it smells alright – that mould and bacteria that starts to grow on damp clothing and environments, that’s very pungent,’ she said.
Using unscented or organic soap to clean your laundry, it’s easier to detect the strong odour.
* Cycle time/s
* It fits in your space
* Hot/cold water connections
* Child locks
* Ease of use
Source: CHOICE Australia
Earlier this month an Australian washing machine repair technician cautioned to never close the washing machine door when it’s not being used, as unwanted mould and bacteria can start to grow.
Posting to Facebook the expert said: ‘The first thing I tell people when I’m called out to a job is to start leaving the doors on their washing machines open when they’re not using it. Keeping it closed for hours and days on end can cause all sorts of problems’.
‘It’s the mould and grime build-up, which is your biggest problem. A lot of people have to change the seal on their machines due to a scum and build-up and that can be largely avoided or prolonged by keeping the door open,’ he warned.
‘Your big problem is warm water being trapped in there. If the door’s closed, then bacteria and mould can breed and no-one wants that.’
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