Whenever I wash my whites they almost never come out white. They almost
always come out off-white and have a discoloration to them where the dirt
was before they were washed. I've tried bleach in different quantities, but
my whites end up falling apart and tearing easily after a few washings,
especially my socks. What can I do to prevent this?
Thank you for your suggestions.
Check to be sure you are using enough detergent. And don't add the bleach
until at least 5 minutes after agitation begins. If added at the same time
as the detergent they can weaken each others cleaning effectiveness.
I use OxyClean for my whites. It doesn't deteriorate the fabric like
bleach. But I don't use it like the instructions say. I put 4 scoops
and a regular amount of detergent in, fill with hot water and let it
agitate for a few minutes, and then turn it off and let it soak several
hours. I either turn it off before going to work, and restart it
when I get home, or turn it off before going to bed and turn it back on
in the morning.
My whites nearly glow in the dark, and my socks and underwear haven't
needed to be replaced from bleach-wear in a couple of years.
I agree with this as I've done it on an individual garment basis in a
sink...but I was wondering if there's a work-around for those of us who
live in condo buildings with common area laundry rooms and have a full
load of whites. Would adding more OxiClean help?
suereel at pobox dot com
Oayclean works fastest above 130F (55C). Other oxygen bleaches, some
included in laundry detergents, have attitives to make them work better
in normal laundry conditions.
An old trick with chlorine bleach is to use half as much bleach and an
equal amount of baking soda. It's gentler on your clothes, and the
baking soda helps chlorine bleach work better.
What about 1/4 cup bleach with some OxiClean that's been dissolved in
very hot water? Then add both to a washing machine set for "hot". I ask
only because I have both products on hand!
suereel at pobox dot com
On Sun, 27 Jul 2003 01:51:45 GMT, "kimberlycards"
It does. Household bleach and OxiClean (or other similar oxygen
products) are both highly reactive--use one or the other as a laundry
booster, but not both. I might add these products do not have a long
shelf life, buy enough to last no more than a few months and store in
a cool dark place.
Some manufacturers of sodium percarbonate say the shelf life is
Sodium hypochlorite has been used medically since the 18th Century.
Shelf life was always a problem. In 1941, it was found that when a 5%
solution was kept a year, it lost 53% at room temperature, 47% in a
refrigerator, and 62% in sunlight.
One reason a 5.25% solution has been standard is that stronger solutions
break down faster. Nowadays, it can be manufactured with less
contamination than in the past. Less contamination means a longer shelf
life. Clorox says that at room temperature, 6% Ultra degrades at only
20% per year.
Chlorine bleach is NaOCl, which works by turning to NaCl and O.
(Salt and single oxygen atoms.)
Oxygen bleaches use H2O2, which works by turning to H2O and O.
(Water and single oxygen atoms.)
If you use both together, you get O2 instead of O. O2 is 19% of air,
and it doesn't bleach. So the two kinds of bleach nullify each other.
It bleached because there was much more Oxiclean than chlorine bleach.
The high pH of chlorine bleach can weaken and discolor fabrics. It can
take lots of dilution to bring the pH down. To be sure chlorine bleach
is sufficiently diluted before it touches fabric, some say not to pour
the bleach into the washer until agitation has started.
I think most laundry detergents have pHs above 9. That's above the
ideal range for chlorine bleach to work, so I prefer Tide with included
oxygen bleach for a full load. To bleach a particular item, I use
baking soda and bleach in water. The soda brings the pH down, which
makes the bleach less harsh and a better whitener.
Your problem may be more in your water supply.
Where I live, we have an *extremely* high concentration of Manganese
in our water supply. Along with other nasty things that make buying
bottled water for drinking and cooking an absolute necessity.
However, we don't have a filter on the in-coming line (the people in
this area that do, get rid of them after a short while, as they find
they have to replace the filters much, much more frequently than
normal, and that's pretty expensive), so I've found certain days and
certain times of the day in which my water is suitable for laundering.
Our whites end up yellowed and dingy, sometimes grey-ish. I've found
a product called "Yellow Out" that works great. Only use it for
all-whites, though. Anything with blue isn't colorfast and will fade
to a brown-ish color.... I learned this the hard way ;-)
Keep your fine white separate from your dirty white, do two separate
loads. That means don't wash socks that have mud or grass stains with
white dress shirts, the cleaner fabric will take on the stains.
Pretreat stains and odor areas with a stain stick and do not overcrowd
the washer, the cloths need room to dance. Hot water wash, hot water
rinse. Cut back on the bleach, it weakens fabrics and can yellow
fabric over time--try 1/2 cup. Cut back on your detergent too,
overkill will not rinse out and can discolor the whites. Liquid is my
preference and adding 1/2 cup washing soda at the start, and followed
by 1/2 cup vinegar in the final rinse and you should be on the way to
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