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greening your lodging - laundry

Money Saving Tips - Laundry
Reprinted with permission from

  • Purchase appliances rated efficient by the U.S. government’s Energy Star program.

  • Even though top-loading washing machines cost less initially, they use up to 60 percent more water, 50 percent more detergent and 40 percent more electricity. Consider using front-loading washers.

  • Wash linens such as towels in cold or warm water and only in full loads.

  • Clean dryer lint screens daily and twice daily in busy laundries.

  • Use extractor cycle correctly. It is more efficient than heat drying.

  • Implement a preventive maintenance program to check washer and dryer belt tension and pulley alignment.

  • Using ozone in washing machines reduces hot water, the amount of chlorine bleach needed and extends the life of equipment.

  • Choose washing machines that have a large selection of wash cycles. Sort laundry loads by degree of soil before washing. Laundry with less soil can be washed on a shorter wash cycle than those with more soil.

  • Use clothes washers that include high G-force extractors to remove water from the linens.

  • Operate the laundry when energy costs are lower. Check with your utility to learn about off-peak rates.

  • Tunnel washers, which are larger units for properties with 500 rooms or more, can significantly reduce water use, especially if they incorporate water recycling.

  • Avoid overdrying to save fuel costs and wear on dryer.

  • Try “reversing dryer” systems. While traditional dryers just tumble in one direction, reversing dryers go in one direction for a while, then in the other, allowing better air flow through sheets and other linens.

  • Allow for enough fresh air flow from outside. If proper venting is not provided for dryers, laundry does not dry properly and the combustion of gas does not work right, raising fuel costs.

  • Microprocessor controls on dryers can conserve fuel. Look for energy-efficient options such as gas valve controls, inlet and outlet temperature monitors and regulation of combustion air.

  • Don’t underload washers. It wastes chemicals and energy.

  • Pair washers and dryers correctly. Thirty-five pounds of wash when wet belongs in a 50-pound dryer. Fifty pounds of wash when wet belongs in a 75-pound dryer.

  • Minimize 90-degree elbows on dryer ductwork. They lengthen dry time.

  • Check for adequate make-up air in dryers. Yellow flame in the dryer indicates too little make-up air. Combustion is not optimal.

  • Purchase dryers with sensors that stop the dryer when clothes are dry.

Reprinted with permission from

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