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Laundry Room Etiquette

Doing laundry sucks. Doing laundry in college sucks even more. Paying for sub par machines that are probably going to shrink multiple articles of clothing isn’t something that anyone is excited about, but that doesn’t mean we have to make it harder on each other. Here are some tips to help you not be the most hated person in your apartment complex:

Set a Timer

Don’t be the kid that abandons their clothing in the machines. If you forget to take your stuff out of the washer, not only will everyone hate you, but your clothes will also contract a large odor in a small amount of time. You then have to pay another $2 (steep, I know) to wash the odor out of the already-washed clothes. Awful. If you leave your stuff in the dryer, the chance that someone will throw them onto the filth of the floor is far too high. Save yourself all of this trouble by setting a timer and being back in the laundry room before anyone has time to touch your stuff.

Don’t Throw People’s Clothes

Even though they’re assholes for neglecting their laundry, don’t be the bigger asshole and throw it all over the floor. Folding a random person’s underwear can be an uncomfortable experience, so if you really need the machine at least stack everything on anything that isn’t the dirty floor. Also ensure that the person isn’t about to be in the room to retrieve their laundry. Here is a good rule of thumb; only take the clothes from the dryer if they are no longer warm. If they are still warm, chances are that someone is about to walk into the room with you holding their underwear. It will be weird.

Clean out the Lint Trap

Seriously, there are signs EVERYWHERE telling you to do this. So do it.

Don’t Steal Stuff

If you’re a laundry room thief you’re both mean and gross. You have no idea where these clothes have been/who they have been on. Spoiler alert: You’re sharing the laundry room with people that live on your floor, and they will notice when you wear their items that have mysteriously gone missing. But if you really have to think twice about stealing people’s laundry, you might have bigger issues.

Be Confident

This sounds absolutely ridiculous, but the laundry rooms are more competitive than the fight to fit behind the White Loop’s yellow line on a drunken Friday night. Two washers and two driers for two floors of students isn’t nearly enough; be aggressive if you actually want to have some clean clothes. Stay away from peak hours and always make sure you have enough quarters before starting a load.

Forcing myself to do my laundry once every five weeks (sorry Mom) is already tough enough, and I’m sure most of you hate it too. When you decide that it is finally time to bring your clothes, detergent, and determination to the machines down the hall, keep these things in mind; laundry room etiquette is something we should all acquire.

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About the Author

Lindsay Hummell

Sophomore majoring in Biobehavioral Health.


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