Help! My Washing Machine Is Damaging My Clothes

Fred's Appliance
June 18, 2014

Do you frequently discover rips, tears, holes or other damage to your clothes after taking them out of the washing machine? It’s disheartening when you find your favorite shirt or pair of jeans damaged. Clothes aren’t cheap by any means, and finding the perfect-fitting clothes is a laborious, time-consuming process. So, what’s causing your machine machine to eat up your laundry?

It’s Probably Not Your Washing Machine…

Some people automatically blame their washing machine for the damage done to their clothes, but nine out of ten times it’s not the unit’s fault. Even decades-old models should effectively clean the laundry load without causing damage. Before you go pointing the finger at your washing machine, you should first eliminate the other possible reasons mentioned below.

Note: due to their lack of an agitator, top-loading washing machines are less likely to damage clothes and laundry.

Overloading The Washing Machine

One of the most common causes of damaged clothes is from overloading the washing machine. Conventional wisdom should tell you that stuffing more laundry into a single load reduces the amount of work required on your end; therefore, many people overload their unit while paying little-to-no attention to its capacity.

But overloading a washing machine places greater pressure on the bearings, drum and the motor, leading to gradual degradation. In addition, it may also push articles of clothing into the door and/or under the agitator, essentially pulling them when the unit is running.

Wrong Cycle

Another reason why some washing machines damage clothing is because the wrong cycle is being used. When was the last time you looked at the care label on your clothes? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. The truth is that most people rarely, if ever, read the care label on their clothes. They simply toss them into the washing machine and use the “medium” or “general” wash setting.

Take a moment to read the care labels on your clothes before washing them. Certain fabrics, such as cashmere and silk, are more susceptible to damage; therefore, clothing made of these fabrics require either hand washing or machine washing on a “gentle” cycle.

Poor Quality Clothes

Clothes that are thin, light, and/or manufactured with cheap fabrics are more likely to damage in the washing machine. If you have a garment that’s delicate, consider hand washing instead. Thicker, “premium” garments tend to hold up better under the stress of a washing machine.

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