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Being green in the laundry

washing machine

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3. Learn to love the cold

Up to 90 per cent of the energy used in the average washing machine is in water heating.

The best way to save the planet in the laundry, then, is to use detergents that wash well in cold water, as opposed to those that rely on a warm or hot wash to work.

4. Buy efficient equipment

Appliances that use less water and electricity are always a good thing!

Front-load washing machines use around a third less water than top-load machines, and the newer the machine, the more likely it is to be efficient.

If you're buying a new machine, look for high star ratings: a 7 kg washing machine with 1-star water efficiency uses about 210 litres of water per wash, compared to the 35 litres needed by a 6-star water rated machine.

5. DIY detergent

Laundry detergents can easily be made at home by blending washing soda with soap flakes in a food processor and storing in an airtight container.

A DIY detergent won't make the same suds or have the heady scent of a store-bought version, but will save plenty of money.

You can add a dash of borax or essential oils to your home-made laundry soap to add more power and scent to the clean.

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