Monday, January 10, 2011

Green Monday!

Hi, folks! Welcome to Day 1 of the new schedule. On Green Mondays, we'll look for handy hints for recycling, eating organic, and reducing our environmental (and budgetary) impact.

Today's challenge: go cold!

There are a number of different opinions when it comes to washing your laundry in cold water. According to Dr. Laundry, hot water is vital for dissolving "body soil" on clothing. If you ask the folks at, you'll hear a different story.

Planet Green and a number of other sources state that 90% of the energy put into washing a load of laundry is spent on heating the wash water. They offer the following challenge: wash 4 of your next 5 loads of laundry in cold water.

Sounds simple, eh? According to the website, by doing 80% of your laundry loads in cold water, you can save up to 72 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions in one month. Do it for a year, and you can save as much as $100 on your energy bill.

Mind you, Dr. Laundry makes a good point. When it comes to oily stains, hot water is your best weapon. For loads that need a hot wash, counter with a cold rinse.

Can we save the planet with cold laundry? I don't know. Wanna help me find out?


  1. I think we wash everything in cold. I never know what might bleed, so I dump it all in and set to cold.

  2. We theoretically wash in warm water, but my husband has the mix set so that it ends up being cold, just not FRIGID. The only clothes that have oily stains are work clothes, and he doesn't care about that. If one of us spills, say, oily dressing on a good piece of clothing, that gets hand-treated anyway, so who needs hot water?

    Good post, as always, Audrey!

    Marian Allen


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