What's Really Happening Inside Your Washer and Dryer?
Tip 1 Pile clothes high up inside a front-loader, but don’t cram them in past where the last row of holes is near the door; with a conventional top-loader, don’t go above the central column, known as the “agitator.” Garments packed too tightly don’t move freely and can end up worn, wrinkled, and only partially clean.
Tip 2 Extra detergent doesn't get things extra-clean. Instead, the superfluous suds carry soils, odors, and bacteria higher than where the water inside the tub can reach and leave a stinky residue that can transfer to clothing. The detergent can also build up in clothes, giving them a dingy look, so follow the fill lines on the cap carefully.
Tip 3 Do a lot of cold water washing? Because cool water isn’t as adept as warm or hot at removing body oils, detergent and smells from clothes, it’s smart to run things through a warm cycle (care labels permitting) every third or fourth load. A cold-water detergent also helps.
Tip 4 Leave the washer door open after each load to allow moisture to evaporate and discourage mildew and bacteria.