A common problem is excessive creasing of clothes in a washing machine. There are several possible causes if laundry comes out creased.
First, make sure the drum isn’t overloaded. It’s easy to overload certain types of laundry because although you may have a 5 or 6kg drum capacity the manufacturers only advise using this capacity with cottons. Everything else has a much lower capacity (check your instruction book). For example my washing machine has a 6kg drum but the instruction book shows the following –
- Cottons – Max load 6kg
- Minimum Iron – max load 3kg
- Delicates – max load 2kg
- Woollens – max load 2kg
- Silks – max load 1kg
Some of these load sizes seem very small but silks and delicates for example weigh much less than cotton towels. Even so, overloading will cause creasing so make sure you aren’t if you are having excessive creasing issues.
Spin speeds and creasing
Like load sizes, spin speeds are surprisingly low for many types of laundry as this list shows –
- Cottons: 1400 rpm
- Minimum iron: 1200 rpm
- Delicates: 600 rpm
- Woollens: 1200 rpm
- Silks: 400 rpm
- Shirts: 600 rpm
- Denim: 900 rpm
You really should check out your own washing machine instruction book because these guides are for a 6Kg 1400rpm washing machine and yours could differ. Different manufacturers and different models of washing machine may vary but the chart above shows that certain items should not be spun at full spin speed and doing so may again add to the level of creasing for some laundry.
Creasing caused by rinsing in hot water
Another more rare cause of creasing is if the washing machine is rinsing in hot water, which really creases clothes. This is fairly rare, but I have seen it many times and often the washer has been connected up wrongly for years because it will still work. These days most washing machines are cold fill only but it’s still possible to accidentally connect it to a hot supply if it is incorrectly marked as cold.
What happens is that someone connects the hoses the wrong way round so that hot water goes to the cold valve and cold water goes to the hot valve. These days most washing machines only have a cold valve but the wrong hose can still get connected to it by mistake. Here are the reasons why this can happen –
- Simple lack of attention to the job when connecting the hose pipe(s)
- Someone correctly connects the red hose to the hot valve and the blue to the cold valve but just assumes that the water running through them will be the right type. However, at some stage previously someone has attached the hoses to the wrong taps at the plumbing end
- Someone correctly connects the hoses to the washing machine but the person who did the plumbing fitted the taps to the wrong water supply or incorrectly identified the taps by fitting the wrong colour lever or marker. The taps have a red mark or lever to signify hot water and a blue mark or lever for cold. No attention was paid to making sure they were on the right supply, so someone connecting the hoses up correctly wouldn’t realise the water supply was wrong
Before pulling your washing machine out and taking hoses off to check, it’s fairly rare. You can check by simply putting the washing machine on rinses and ensuring the water going in is stone cold and stays cold (don’t forget even hot water can be cold at first until it runs warm or if there’s none left in the hot water tank. If your washing machine was connected up wrong though it should mean the clothes come out warm and it will certainly waste a lot of hot water too. (More information – Should the washing come out warm or cold?)
Creasing caused by too high wash temperature
Another thing that can cause creasing is washing on too hot a temperature or washing easily creased laundry on a program at the correct temperature but with a final spin speed that’s too fast.
Finally, make sure that affected laundry is taken out of the drum as soon as they have spun because laying in the drum for lengthy periods can also cause creasing. This is why dedicates wash programs have an anti crease guard where they suspend the clothes in water until you are ready to spin them and retrieve them straight away.( Related links: Download replacement Instruction books (If yours is lost) | Issues related to installing or connecting up a washing machine )
A last resort option
The above article lists all of the common and possible causes for badly creased laundry that I can think of. However, if your problem has definitely not been caused by any of the above, then it could simply just be that your washing machine is inadvertently causing excessive creasing by the fact that it is not using enough water during rinses. Check out this Washerhelp forum topic, which gives a possible solution to creased clothes and laundry. It does involve a bit of messing about but it appears to have worked for this contributor.