Everyone needs clean clothes, but it can be pretty expensive to keep your clothes clean especially if you have kids or a large family. So if you are wondering how to save money at the laundromat, check out these tips.
How to Save Money at the Laundromat
There are a number of tricks you can use to save money at the laundromat. Here are some of the best ones.
Wash Only Dirty Clothes
It may sound like a no-brainer, but be sure the clothes you are washing are actually dirty.
If you’ve worn a shirt once and you didn’t spill anything on it, chances are you can wear it a second time without washing it. Too often, we throw our clothes in the hamper without giving a lot of thought as to whether or not they can be worn a second time.
Also, if you have kids, make sure they aren’t throwing clean clothes in the hamper so they don’t have to hang them up.
Kids will sometimes want to change their clothes more than once a day. If this is the case in your home, take a good look at the clothes to see if they can be worn a second time without washing.
Use Your Own Cleaning Products
It is a great convenience to buy laundry products at the laundromat, but if you do, you are overpaying for that convenience.
Be sure to bring your own detergent and use that instead. If you use coupons you can save even more money on the detergent that you buy.
Buying detergent at the laundromat should be your last option and only if you forget your own.
If you always do laundry at the laundromat you should just keep your detergent in the trunk of your car.
That way you will never forget it and you won’t have to lug it in and out of the house every time you do laundry. Just make sure the lid is on tight so it doesn’t spill.
Measure your Detergent
Speaking of laundry detergent, I know it is tempting to just dump some in the washer but resist the temptation.
Be sure to actually measure the amount that the bottle recommends. That way you won’t waste money by using too much.
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Only Wash Full Loads
Make sure you completely fill the washing machine. You will save a great deal of money if you have one or two larger loads instead of three or four smaller loads.
It’s true you don’t want to stuff them so full that your clothes don’t get clean, but don’t just fill them halfway up.
Do Small Loads at Home
If you just have a few clothes to wash especially things like t-shirts and underwear, do them at home by hand.
It won’t take long and you will save money by not taking them to the laundromat.
Keep An Eye on The Dryer
Chances are you dry your clothes for too long. When I’ve gone to the laundromat, the dryers took quarters. It was 1 quarter for 6 minutes of drying time. I would always start by putting 2 quarters in and then checked my clothes.
Heavier clothes needed a third quarter and lighter items didn’t. So, start with shorter times and then check before adding more money.
Dry Your Clothes at Home
Even better, skip the dryers at the laundromat and dry your clothes at home. You can find a clothes drying rack that will fit your living situation.
Drying clothes this way will save you good money over the long haul.
Personally, I would dry my clothes at the laundromat so that all my lighter clothes were dry and then finish drying the heavier clothes at home by putting them on a drying rack.
You Don’t Actually Need to Sort Your Clothes
One of the first lessons I bet you learned when you were taught how to do laundry is how to sort your clothes.
While that’s great in theory, I have to admit I have never done it in my life and I have never had an issue.
Sorting your laundry leads to smaller loads and higher expenses. By not sorting your clothes, you can fit more of them in one machine and save yourself some money.
Not to mention you can free yourself from the sorting monster and save yourself a little time.
Scout Out the Best Laundromat
If you live in a larger city that has multiple laundromats, take some time to check them all out.
Chances are you will find one that is less expensive than the others. While saving a quarter doesn’t sound like a lot, all those quarters will add up to a lot of dollars over the weeks, months, and years.
You can put these quarters into a fund to buy your own washer and dryer.
Customer Loyalty Cards
While you are checking out all of those laundromats, see if any of them have customer loyalty cards.
If you find one that does, see if their loyalty program will save you more money than say a cheaper laundromat. If so, go to that one.
If you happen to find a cheaper laundromat that has a loyalty program, then you’ve hit the laundry money-saving lottery.
It goes without saying, be sure to use that loyalty card every time you do laundry.
Do You Really Need the Dryer Sheets and Fabric Softener?
No, you don’t. I don’t use either, never had, because of allergies, but I have never missed it.
My clothes are clean and smell just fine. I don’t miss them and I bet you won’t either.
These small costs add up and if you can eliminate some of them by not using dryer sheets and fabric softener then all the better.
Besides, if you dry your clothes at home, you won’t need the dryer sheets anyway.
Is It Cheaper to Go to the Laundromat?
If you already have a functioning washer and dryer at home, then it is usually cheaper to do your laundry there.
If you don’t have a washer or dryer and have to buy one, it can be cheaper to wash your clothes at the laundromat.
If you have priced washers and dryers lately, you will know just how expensive they are. You could spend $1,000 on the low end for the set and $3,000 on the high end.
Of course, if you do as I did and buy them used, you can get a washer for around $200 and a dryer for about the same. If you plan to go the used route then it is cheaper to buy and do your laundry at home.
Can You Get Bed Bugs at the Laundromat?
Yes, it is possible to get bed bugs at the laundromat, but you can avoid it. Bed bugs are nasty and no one wants them in their house. Once in your home, it is very difficult to get rid of them.
The best way to ensure you don’t get bed buds at the laundromat is to wash your clothes in hot water.
The bugs can survive a warm/cold cycle, so you will need to use the hot/warm or hot/cold cycle to make sure any bed bugs lingering around will be killed.
To Sum it All Up:
When it comes to how to save money at the laundromat there are several easy ways to do just that. Be sure to only wash full loads, use the right amount of detergent, and only clean clothes that are truly dirty.