Approximately 35 billion loads of laundry are done in the United States each year, so there are bound to be a few mistakes. Here are some quick remedies for the most common laundry blunders.

1. The mistake: Using the wrong laundry detergent for your machine.

  • The quick fix: Use laundry detergent specially designed for your washing machine, particularly if you have a high efficiency model. Price dictates quality in name brands.

2. The mistake: Ignoring the tools and features on your washing machine.

  • The quick fix: Adjusting your washing machine according to the soil level and size of the clothes to save time and money. For increased water efficiency, front-loading machines have sensors that regulare the amount of water based on the load size. To save time, use a shorter cycle for lightly soiled laundry.

3. The mistake: Using the wrong amount of laundry detergent.

  • The quick fix: Extra suds actually inhibit proper cleaning by holding onto soils and re-depositing them on your laundry. For best results, use less laundry detergent for soft water and more detergent for hard water. Add more detergent for larger loads and heavily soiled clothes.

4. The mistake: Not emptying the lint filter.

  • The quick fix: Always clean the lint screen. This increases energy efficiency, speeds up drying and reduces the risk of overheating associated with clogging.