5 tips to help your washer and dryer get through the summer swelter.

We’re full swing into summer, which means barbecues, trips to the beach, pool parties, camp days and, of course, sweltering heat! We’ve all got loads of wet and sweaty clothes to get clean, so our laundry appliances are working overtime this season. And with predictions of a hotter-than-normal summer coming our way, it’s important to perform regular maintenance checks to avoid breakdowns and costly washer and dryer repairs. Here are some easy ways you can help keep those cycles going and your clothes fresh and dry during the hottest months.

Shake out clothes
Beach days are the best, but excess sand on towels and clothing can damage a washer’s drum over time and get trapped in the inner workings of your dryer, causing serious damage. Shaking out items helps remove the sand and also increases a dryer’s efficiency, allowing vents to stay clean and clear so your clothes dry more evenly. Plus, you never know what you might find in your pockets after a good shake!

Sort your clothes

While it’s a given that separating your laundry into like colors and fabrics helps maintain the longevity of your clothes, did you know it’s good for your washer, too? It’s hard for your machine to find the right wash setting for mixed loads, leading to greater strain on the washer’s motor. Sorting your laundry also creates smaller and more size-efficient loads that help to balance the machine.

Don’t overload machines
Even if you’re cleaning bulky items like sheets and blankets, allow them to fit loosely in both your washer and dryer. Oversized loads not only lead to poor washing and drying results, but they can put greater stress on the machines, throw them off balance, damage the bearings, and burn out the motor.

Perform routine cleaning and checks

Run an empty wash cycle every few months on the hottest setting to keep drainpipes clean and to help remove any buildup within the machine’s basin. Be sure to wipe out any mold or mildew, which can easily accumulate in the rubber gasket that ensures a tight seal on the washer door. You can also use a solution of equal parts vinegar and water to spray the gaskets, dispensers, and exterior of the machine, then wipe them down with a clean, dry cloth when finished.

Regularly clean the lint filter in your dryer
Lint traps capture lint, fluff, and other soft particles that shed from your clothes, and prevent them from clogging your dryer’s heat passages and becoming trapped in the exhaust hose. It’s important to clean these filters after each use so the machine can exhaust hot air properly, which prevents it from overheating.

Performing your own checks and maintenance on laundry appliances is smart, but as with any piece of complex electrical equipment, you will eventually require washing machine service and dryer repairs. While the cost depends on the severity of the issue, many of these laundry appliance repairs can add up to several hundreds of dollars, not to mention the headache of loads of dirty clothes piling up in the meantime.

We know that, especially during summer, your money should be spent on vacations, not appliance breakdowns. Enroll in PSE&G WorryFree Laundry Protection Plans so you can keep your focus on fun in the sun!

PSE&G Editorial Team

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