Expensive Routine – How to Save Money When Washing Laundry
Washing laundry often wastes detergent and electricity. This is harmful to the environment and bad for your finances. Small changes in everyday routine can have a big impact. Five tips to help you save.
WIf he uses too much detergent every time he launches and only fills the drum halfway, powder and electricity are wasted. There is another way of doing this.
“Washing clothes is a lot about habits. In order to protect the environment and save money, it is worth taking a closer look at your washing routine – and adjusting it if necessary, ”says Indra Enterlein from the Naturschutzbund Deutschland (Nabu).
The head of resource policy at Nabu gives five tips on how you can wash your laundry in an environmentally friendly and economical way.
1. Tip: Pay attention to efficiency when buying
It starts with the new purchase: “You should choose the device with the best energy efficiency class, advises Enterlein. The machines are comparatively expensive. “But such devices often pay off in the long term because of the saved energy costs”.
Tip 2: select the right wash program
Basically, the water and electricity consumption with new devices is perfectly optimized. Nevertheless, you can do without some programs – a prewash is rarely necessary, for example, says Enterlein.
When operating the machine, she advises you to choose an environmental or eco wash cycle. “It takes longer, but uses less energy than a short-term program.”
Reason: The laundry soaks longer. The machine therefore needs less energy to remove stains and clean clothes.
3rd tip: stay cool
If you run the machine at a low temperature, for example 20 degrees, you can save up to 70 percent on electricity costs. This is shown by calculations by the consumer initiative. If the water temperature is 40 instead of 60 degrees, the device uses up to 50 percent less electricity.
Why can so much energy be saved through temperature? “When the water is heated, the washing machine uses up to 90 percent of the energy,” explains Nabu expert Enterlein. The higher the temperature, the more energy the device uses.
Often, however, a temperature of 30 degrees Celsius is sufficient for the laundry to be clean, says Enterlein. Nevertheless, she advises: “You should regularly plan a wash cycle at 60 degrees – every two to three weeks – so that no germs form in the machine.”
4. Tip: Do not use too much detergent
“Many detergents are now very compact and economical,” says Enterlein. “It’s good for the environment. But the Germans often overdose the detergent. ”The dosage of washing powder depends on the hardness of the water, the size of the appliance and the degree of soiling of the laundry.
It is worth asking the local waterworks about the hardness of the water. “The less calcareous the water, the less detergent you need.”
Once you have correctly determined the amount, you can make a mark on the dosage cap – and thus avoid overdosing, recommends Enterlein. You can usually do without fabric softener.
Tip 5: Better to dry your laundry in the air
“You can save the most if you do not buy a dryer – in addition to the purchase costs, there are no electricity costs,” says Enterlein.
The savings potential is enormous. According to a survey by the Öko-Institut, the electricity consumption of the most energy-efficient dryer is 156 kilowatt hours per year. For comparison: the most efficient washing machine in the survey is around 90 kilowatt hours per year.