- Sort your laundry by fabric type, color and water temperature.
Usually this means five groups:
- Whites - everything white, like underwear, t-shirts, handkerchiefs, etc.
- Lights - including striped whites, off-whites and pastels
- Darks - everything dark, like blacks, blues, browns
- Brights - reds, yellows, oranges, fluorescents
- Delicates - fine linens, lingerie, some synthetic fabrics
- Read the labels. All garments include labeling that outlines proper fabric care. Following the garments listed guidelines will increase the life of your item.
- Keep your piles on the small side. Machines operate better when clothes are evenly distributed and balanced. When you lay your dry clothes in the washer, keep them loose (don't stuff), and never fill to more than 3/4 of the way up the sides.
- DO NOT OVERLOAD. This could cause the machine to malfunction.
- Keep dry clean only clothes separate. Take them to a professional dry cleaner.
- Wash reds or new, colored garments separately the first few times. These items can bleed and stain other laundry if you're not careful. To test an item for colorfastness, dampen it with water in a discreet spot and blot with an old white cloth. If color transfers to the white, the item will bleed.
- Check all clothes for stains and sort out those that require pretreatment or soaking.
- Carefully check all pockets and pant cuffs for things you don't want to wash (that shredded tissue or piece of folded notebook paper). Even check the inside of the machine as a fellow resident may have left a mess in the washer.
- Watch that you don't mix lint generators and lint magnets. Some lint generators include towels, sweatshirts and flannel. Lint magnets include corduroy, velvets, and permanent-press clothes. When in doubt, turn the lint-magnet items inside out as you sort them.
- Use Triton Cash instead of quarters. All washers and dryers on campus accept Triton Cash. Just follow the instructions next to the key pad. For more info visit http://tritoncash.ucsd.edu/ . If you still need quarters, come down to the Residence Life Office to use the change machine.
- Look at what items you may be able to now combine in drying. You may have sorted your whites and your jeans for washing but those faded jeans will dry just fine with your whites.
- Don't overload the dryer. Students often pack the dryer full and find their clothes to not be dry at the end of the cycle. A properly loaded dryer is less than half of the space occupied by clothes.
- Can the item be hung to dry? A great way to save some quarters is to hang dry your laundry.
Keep an eye on your laundry as clothes are the most often stolen item for College Students!