The debate over whether to wash clothes at 30°C or 40°C is a heated one. Some people swear by the benefits of washing at a lower temperature, while others find that higher temperatures are more effective at getting clothes clean.
You may have heard that you should be washing your clothes at 30°C to save energy, but there are a few things you need to consider before you make the switch.
Should You Wash Wool and Silk at 30°C or 40°C?
Wool and silk are fabrics that are often treated with special care. The washing temperature of these fabrics is generally lower than for cotton and linen.
Wool is particularly sensitive to high temperatures. In fact, it shrinks at high temperatures. Silk is also sensitive to high temperatures, but not quite as much as wool.
If you wash wool at 30°C, you won’t need to worry about it shrinking or becoming damaged.
You can wash silk at 30°C as well, but you must take a few precautions. When washing silk at 30°C, you must:
- Wash it separately from other fabrics in the washing machine (to avoid shrinkage).
- Use a mild detergent.
If you wash wool at 40°C, you will have to take some precautions. There is a risk that the fabric will shrink and that it will become damaged.
Which Is Better Overall – 30°C or 40°C?
At 30°C, less energy is used (which helps reduce your carbon footprint). Your whites will also last longer as there will be less wear and tear on the fabric.
However, at 30°C there is a greater risk of bacteria growth, so if you are washing items that need to be disinfected (e.g., baby clothes), then you may want to consider washing at 40°C or higher instead.
At 40°C, your clothes will get cleaner, but you will experience a shorter lifetime for your clothes and the washing machine itself will use more energy.
The higher temperature also means that you have a greater risk of damage to colours and fabrics, so you may want to avoid washing dark or delicate fabrics at 40°C if possible.
Neither temperature is better or worse than the other – it all depends on your personal preference and what you are washing.
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