If you don’t have a washing machine or dryer in your home or apartment, you may need to go to the local laundromat to wash your clothes, bed sheets, pillowcases, and other essential items. If you’ve never used the laundry equipment at a facility because you once had your own machines to use at home, there are some public laundromat tips you should know about before you start to bring your clothes over to the facility. It’s possible to get your clothes clean without spending all day at the laundromat, but you need to be aware of certain things.

Sort Your Laundry Before You Get to the Laundromat

If you have some spare time, start sorting your laundry into different piles based on color and material while you’re still at home. It’s something you can do when you’re sitting in front of the television while watching your favorite show. It’s better to sort and organize the laundry in advance because then it’s one less thing you’ll need to do while you’re at the laundromat and that means you’ll be able to get to cleaning your clothes even faster than you would if you had to sort everything while you were at the facility.

You may even want to put different loads into small plastic trash bags. You could open a bag, throw the contents of the bag into a machine, and then throw the bag out in the trash while repeating the same process with all the other bags. It makes it even easier to throw your clothes in the washing machine in a matter of seconds to save some of your time.

Purchase Your Laundry Supplies in Advance

While most laundromats sell assorted laundry products, such as laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, and even laundry bags, they’re likely going to charge you a lot more for those products than most of the department stores. Check your weekly circulars for coupons on some of your favorite laundry products and then purchase them in advance. You can bring your laundry supplies with you and save a few dollars instead of paying more than retail price for the products you use to get your clothes looking clean and smelling fresh.

Of course, you should carry some extra change with you to the laundromat just in case you need to grab something while you’re on the go. If you don’t have time to stop at a store but you’ve realized you’re out of dryer sheets, the laundromat may sell small packets of dryer sheets in vending machines for you to use when you’re drying your clothes.

Know the Best Time to Go to Your Local Laundromat

One of the most important public laundromat tips involves knowing when it’s a good time to go to the laundromat to wash your clothes. While the amount of traffic in the facility will vary based on where you’re living, it’s best to know that weekends are often the busiest times. If you’re trying to avoid a rush of people who may take up a lot of space, leaving you with only a few washing machines, you shouldn’t choose to wash clothes on the weekend.

If you must wash your clothes on the weekend, try going earlier. The evenings are often the busiest times at the laundromat on the weekends. If you’re looking to go during a slow period, choose a weekday and consider going earlier in the morning or in the evening when most people are preparing dinner and aren’t at the laundromat washing their clothes.

Choose the Right Size For Your Washing Machines

Most laundromats have washing machines available in several different sizes, including small, medium, and large. If you have a large load, don’t attempt to fit all your clothes into a small washing machine. While everything may fit inside the washing machine, the clothes may be bunched up together, making it difficult for water, detergent, and fabric softener to spread out evenly on all your belongings. As a result, some of your clothes may look clean and smell fresh while others may still have stains and smell unusual.

A medium-sized washer is often the ideal choice for larger loads, but if you have an extremely large load consisting of multiple blankets and comforters, you may want to consider using one of the largest machines available inside the facility. When you put your clothes inside of a washing machine, there should still be enough space for the clothes to move around easily during the cycle so that everything gets clean for you.

Look Inside the Machine Before You Use It

There are times when small pieces of clothing may stick to the inside of the washing machine. The person using the machine before you might not have noticed this piece of clothing, but you don’t want to wash clothes that aren’t yours, so it’s best to check for anything that was left behind. If you see something that doesn’t belong to you, simply pull it out and give it to a staff member at the laundromat. The staff member could hold onto the piece of clothing to see if someone comes back to the laundromat to look for it.

Choose the Proper Setting For the Water

Before closing the door to the washing machine, make sure you’re adjusting the water setting. For example, you may want to wash your clothes in hot water because they’re heavily soiled. However, you may have certain clothes that should only be machine washed in cold water. Pay attention to the water setting before you close the door and start the cycle because if you don’t make adjustments, your clothes will get washed in a setting that someone else used before you, which may not be the right setting for the clothes you’re trying to wash.

Bring Your Own Laundry Baskets

The laundromat may have rolling baskets for you to use when you’re taking your clothes out of the washing machine and putting them in the dryer. While it’s convenient to roll damp clothes from one machine to the next, it’s a good idea to have your own laundry baskets ready to use when you’re going to take the clothes out of the dryer. If you’re not planning to fold your clothes at the laundromat because you’d rather fold while at home, you can quickly toss the clothes into your own baskets, load them into your vehicle, and then drive away to get home and start the folding process.

If you’re going to fold your clothes at the laundromat, consider wiping down the table before putting your clothes on it. You never know how many germs are left behind on folding tables, especially since some people like to lean on them or eat on them. Children may be running around the laundromat making messes on the folding tables and you wouldn’t want your clean clothes to get messy simply because you’ve decided to fold them at the laundromat.

These public laundromat tips may come in handy for you now that you’re going to be washing and drying your clothes at the laundromat. While you may think it’s going to take you a long time to wash everything and dry it, it’s completely possible to wash your belongings within a reasonable amount of time and get out of the laundromat in less than two hours. If you follow these convenient and simple public laundromat tips, you shouldn’t have any issues washing your clothes, drying your clothes, or even folding them before bringing them home.