college student at self-serve laundromat


Off to college? New friends, new experiences and new workloads shouldn’t be hampered by a fear of laundry. Unless you can ship your dirty laundry bag back home or pay to keep your favorite jeans clean, you might want to keep these handy tips tucked away for your first laundry day.

So grab your dirty laundry and follow step by step!

  1. Don’t leave everything to the last minute and cram a month’s laundry into one load. The goal is to make sure your clothes come out clean.
  2. Pretreat stains. Here’s a stain-removal guide.
  3. Empty all pockets, close zippers and tie strings on clothing. Check care labels. Washing sweaters? Turn them inside out to reduce pilling.
  4. Separate lights and darks into two loads, and place clothing loosely into the washer, making sure the clothes have room to move.
  5. Select the washer setting, based on soil levels and fabrics. Here’s a TIP: use cold water as much as you can, it’s much better for your clothes and best for the environment.
  6. Use detergent wisely, extra detergent actually harms the fibers in clothing. For college students, we highly recommend Swash detergent – one small capful is all it takes per load, and get up to 83 regular loads with its 8x concentrated formula. PLUS: one small bottle can be easily tucked away in a tight dorm room.
  7. Start your load. Once finished, get ready to transfer your wet laundry to the dryer to avoid musty odors in your clothes.
  8. Check the lint screen on the dryer and remove any debris (use your hands, not water.)
  9. Select the appropriate dry settings:
    • LOW: athletic wear, light fabrics, t-shirts and casuals
    • MEDIUM: bedsheets and medium-weight clothing
    • HIGH: jeans, towels and heavy fabric
  10. Empty the dryer as soon as the cycle ends to prevent wrinkles by folding your clothing while it’s still warm.

Looking for more tips?

Washing machine settings explained from our Maytag brand.
How to get your towels clean and fresh
How to wash and dry jeans from our Whirlpool brand.
Learn more about pilling from our Whirlpool brand.