Saturday, October 6, 2012

Spartan Saturdays - Stained Filthy Clothing? No Problem!

I have always been frugal, and now that I have kids and a house payment I find myself trying to save money whenever possible.  I have some frugal household tips that I wanted to share with you and I thought it would be fun to do this on Saturdays and call the post series Spartan Saturdays.

Today's post is how to clean filthy stained clothing, without using extra water or electricity.  This tip is very useful because I have two young boys who play outside all of the time, so we deal with a lot of mud, dirt, grass stains, and even blood (from big wheel crashes).

This works great in an upright washer, but you can also do it in a front-loading one. I use Ecover Laundry Wash Liquid (I buy it at HEB for pretty cheap) because enzymes in other detergent bind to our clothing and Duke is sensitive to them.  We found this out when he started waking up sometimes with his eyes swollen shut.  Ecover cleans great (I use no more than half the suggested amount) and it smells like lavender and doesn't have optical brighteners and other annoying additives that bind to clothing.

Throw your super filthy wash in the washer.  Add normal amount of detergent and select cold water and the Soak (not Prewash) setting.  Let your clothes run through Soak and let them sit in the dirty soapy water for 15 minutes or until you remember you are soaking them (sometimes it can be overnight for me...). Then turn the washer on a short cycle wash (I still use cold water) and you should have clean stain-free clothing.

For me this has worked wonders.  My boys' clean clothing is usually spotless now, which is unbelievable considering what they do in them.  I don't have to use any stain removers or fancy detergent and this doesn't use any more water than a normal wash.  The clothing doesn't need so much agitation (thus the short wash rather than regular or super wash) because they have been soaking in detergent, so less wear and tear on my washer (and lower electric bills!).  The soaking is more gentle on your clothing than using the agitator or tossing in the washing machine and it really works.

I hope you enjoy this little tip.  If you have additional washing tips I would love to read them.  Just leave a comment below.

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  1. Thanks for this great tip with washing stained clothing at the same time as saving money. cheers :)

  2. It never occurred to me that washing vs. soaking was an energy saver, but well, it makes sense. Thanks for the idea. Mud and grease are my two worst enemies when it comes to laundry.