is 3 hour wash cycle normal

Washing Machine Takes 3 Hours to Wash – Is This Normal?

With all of the modern technology and instant results we have at our fingertips these days, we often become impatient when something takes a bit longer than we’d like. 

Whether that’s buffering Wi-Fi, being put on hold, or your washing machine taking it upon itself to wash your laundry for 3 hours, we’re likely to get impatient. 

However, in some instances, nothing can be done to speed up proceedings. Read on to learn about that pesky 3-hour wash and if it is worth the wait! 

First of all, modern washing machines in the UK are manufactured in accordance with EU legislation, in an attempt to save on energy. Despite the wash taking longer (which uses more energy – so far, not so good), the washing machine requires less water and therefore less energy to heat the water up. 

The average cycle time for a 3.5kg wash 10 years ago was 99 minutes, versus 144 minutes now. This longer wait might seem like a bit of a pain, but modern washing machines wash your laundry to a much higher standard, whilst also benefiting the environment. Bear in mind that the heavier the load, the longer the wash – so don’t be surprised if your cycle time increases in accordance with weight. 


Can You Use the Quick Wash Setting Instead?

using quick wash setting

A common misconception is that a quick wash can do a similar job to a regular wash, just in a quicker amount of time.

Wrong! The quick wash is designed simply to ‘refresh’ clothing that has previously been washed, but needs a quick refresh before wearing – i.e., an item of clothing that has been through the wash and hung in your wardrobe 6 months ago, and now you’ve decided to wear it for work drinks in a couple of days. 

Definitely don’t be replacing regular washes with the quick wash option!

Read our guide comparing quick wash and regular wash cycles to understand more about the differences.


Is Your Machine Taking Longer Than It Should?

washing machine takes longer than it should

In most cases, the user manual should provide all of the necessary information in relation to load time. If your washing cycle is massively exceeding this time, then there could be an issue that needs resolving. 

Overloading your washer is a big no no, and can negatively affect overall run time – make sure you’ve loaded your machine correctly. 

Similarly, only wash items of a similar density. If you don’t, your washer might spend time redistributing the load, increasing the time of your wash cycle. If you’re still facing problems after having loaded your washer correctly, it is worth contacting a professional to investigate further. 

As a rule, modern wash cycle times generally increase with load weight, or vice versa. So don’t be concerned if your 7 kg wash takes 3 hours for example. However, if it takes 3 hours to wash 3 T-shirts, for example, then there might be an issue that needs addressing – just contact the manufacturer. 

Unfortunately, in general, patience is key with your washing machine! A good way to go about things is to put a wash on just before you leave the house for a few hours, or over the weekend when you’re pottering about doing other things. You can’t rush sparkling clean results – just let your washer take its time and it’ll be worth the wait!