Etiquette Hell

A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. Guests, register for forum membership to see all the boards. => Time For a Coffee Break! => Topic started by: Minmom3 on September 24, 2013, 02:11:33 PM

Title: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Minmom3 on September 24, 2013, 02:11:33 PM
Question for all your knowledgeable folk -

I only have cold water in my laundry room.  If I want a hot water wash, I boil water on the stove, or drive in to the laundromat (which is really pricey!).  99% of my laundry is just fine with a cold water wash.  EXCEPT for my stocking socks.  I wear compression hosiery knee socks every day, in clogs, and they get smelly as hell.  Foot odor supreme.   :(  The cold water wash does very little to reduce that.  Boiling pots of hot water is a pain in the patoot, and driving in to town requires money (and seems ridiculous for such a small load). 

Anybody have any good ideas for stench reduction?  Vinegar in the wash?  Any other ideas for me that I can do every time I do laundry?

I also put Gold Bond foot powder in the clogs, which helps a little bit, but I really need a good way to reduce the smell in/on the stockings themselves, as they are world class awful after a few hours, regardless of how clean my actual foot is.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Amara on September 24, 2013, 02:18:24 PM
I haven't tried it but I would do a wash using only vinegar (two + cups). Then wash them in your regular detergent. Hang them outside in the sun.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Redneck Gravy on September 24, 2013, 02:22:34 PM
Try adding baking soda - cheapest alternative I know of.

And you might try Borax (I think that is soda ash) - may not be much difference between baking soda and soda ash but worth a try.

I do not wash anything in hot water.  Cold has always worked good for me.

 
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Judah on September 24, 2013, 02:36:23 PM
I wash everything in cold except sheets and towels. It works well except for my exercise clothing which can get REALLY smelly. The best solution I've found is to fill the fabric softener receptacle with plain white vinegar. This works great, plus it eliminates that weird musty smell front loaders can get sometimes.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Oh Joy on September 24, 2013, 02:41:03 PM
I'm thinking of my thicker cloth diapers, which get smelly too fast if they haven't gotten clean and dried reeeeally well.  I'd try the vinegar wash, then lay them in direct sunlight until completely dry all the way through.  If that works, you have an extra clue.  Sun can work magic.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: TootsNYC on September 24, 2013, 02:48:15 PM
Do you not have hot water anywhere in your home?

If you do have hot water in the kitchen sink (or even warm water), I'd say what about a 15-minute hot-water soak with OxyClean or other oxygen bleach. Then dump the whole bucket into the washing machine, add the other clothes, and launder in cold. You don't need as much hot water, and the OxyClean will work on the odor (I think).
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Outdoor Girl on September 24, 2013, 02:56:22 PM
Do you not have hot water anywhere in your home?

If you do have hot water in the kitchen sink (or even warm water), I'd say what about a 15-minute hot-water soak with OxyClean or other oxygen bleach. Then dump the whole bucket into the washing machine, add the other clothes, and launder in cold. You don't need as much hot water, and the OxyClean will work on the odor (I think).

I agree.  I think this would work well.

You might want to try a detergent supposedly designed to work better in cold water, too, if you aren't already using one.  I don't know if they are a total gimmick or if they really do work better.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: doodlemor on September 24, 2013, 03:01:59 PM
I started using cat pee cleaner/neutralizer in smelly sneakers, and it works.  I've also used half white vinegar and half water for the same purposes.  The vinegar is cheaper, but the specific cleaner works better.  Maybe this would work on your socks.  It is available at pet stores, walmart, and supermarkets.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: kckgirl on September 24, 2013, 03:09:24 PM
My compression socks say not to use hot water. I wash them in warm water (by hand when needed sooner, but usually in the machine) and dry on a rack. After my morning shower, I put scented lotion on my feet before socks, and I mostly wear Crocs. My socks don't smell like anything other than the lotion.

I would try the OxyClean soak suggestion just as Toots mentioned. Soak in warm, then dump the whole bucket into the machine and wash as usual.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: artk2002 on September 24, 2013, 03:24:19 PM
As an aside, if your apartment doesn't have hot water, please check your local habitability laws. In many places, the lack of hot water would mark the place as "uninhabitable."
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: MrsJWine on September 24, 2013, 03:25:59 PM
I put a little bit of OxyClean in all my washes because my workout clothes stink to high heaven otherwise. It seems to do the trick. I've also had success with putting vinegar in the rinse cycle and just plain old baking soda. But I like OxyClean the best for sweat odors.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: MrsJWine on September 24, 2013, 03:28:16 PM
Also, try to find out what kind of water you have. We have very hard water here, and it makes it tricky to get some things clean. When our kids were in diapers, we used a liquid water softener (Calgon, in the laundry aisle) in each load, and it made a huge difference. It might be the water quality, not the cleaners you're using, or maybe some combination.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: WillyNilly on September 24, 2013, 03:31:38 PM
I wear compression hosiery knee socks every day, in clogs, and they get smelly as hell.  Foot odor supreme...

I also put Gold Bond foot powder in the clogs, which helps a little bit, but I really need a good way to reduce the smell in/on the stockings themselves, as they are world class awful after a few hours, regardless of how clean my actual foot is.

Have you cleaned your clogs?
Often foot odor is from dead skin cells and sweat and debris (which can include powder) all mixing up. If your feet are clean, and you are cleaning your stockings, that leaves one other component: the shoes. Your skin cells can move through the stocking, and certainly your sweat can as well, where it will all mix with the powder and then... just stay in the shoes.

I would suggest at the end of the day when your clogs are all warmed up and moist from sweat (and yes even if you don't notice the sweat, feet are constantly sweating) take your clogs off and give them a good scrub with soap and water.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: jpcher on September 24, 2013, 04:47:05 PM
Try adding baking soda - cheapest alternative I know of.

You also might try "storing" your socks (after use) in a large baggie of sorts with some baking powder sprinkled inside as a "pre-soak de-smellifier." The baking soda will also help absorb some of the sweat moisture from the socks.

On laundry day dump the socks and fresh baking powder in the washer with the rest of your load.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: BigBadBetty on September 24, 2013, 05:12:09 PM
I don't know if your compression socks are made of a similar material, but I just read an article on Jezebel about cleaning workout clothes. My boyfriend has some synthetic workout clothes that just hold the stink even after washing. He got rid of most of these clothes so I haven't had a chance to try it. She suggests soaking in vinegar and also has other suggestions. You can read the article here:

http://jezebel.com/what-to-do-when-your-gym-clothes-reek-1141402734
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Library Dragon on September 24, 2013, 05:22:15 PM
Good suggestions above.  I almost only wash in cold water. 

Use baking soda wash in the wash and then vinegar in the rinse.  It should do the trick. 
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: TootsNYC on September 24, 2013, 05:40:51 PM
if your clogs are leather or would absorb liquid, try this shoe dryer: 

http://www.peetdryer.com/product_power_cell.html

The most important thing is to get the environment inside the shoes dry. Use it every night.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: ladyknight1 on September 24, 2013, 07:10:13 PM
I only wash in cold, but my husband and teenage DS make for some stinky socks. We use Oxyclean in every load we wash. It works great on odors and bacteria.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Julian on September 24, 2013, 08:03:05 PM
Another thing that helps with biological smells is enzymatic detergents. 

When I got my first dog, the vet nurse recommended Biozet (not sure if this is an Aussie brand, but there should be something similar where you are) for removing 'accident' odours.  I've used it for all laundry since, and it works very well.

The dogs have an indoor toilet area (lino offcut covered with old synthetic bath mats) where they can go when they can't get out.  I change out the mats every day, and wash them in cold water and Biozet.  They come up smelling fine - which definitely wasn't the case before they got washed!

Oxiclean, vinegar and bleach - not together - are all good at getting rid of smells.  I would be cautious using bleach on synthetic hose because if it's too strong it can degrade the fabric. 

I also agree with a PP - clean the clogs.  You could also fill some old socks or hose with bicarb +/- a few drops of essential oil, and put them into the clogs overnight, every night.  Change out the bicarb/oils regularly.

Another option is some soft 'odour eater' type inner soles for the clogs, but you may need to make them adhere somehow - double sided tape? 
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: PastryGoddess on September 24, 2013, 08:33:54 PM
I soak my workout clothes in cold water and oxyclean between washings.  I don't have enough clothes to wash them every day, so I usually go a week or so before washing them.

I second cleaning your clogs everyday as well.  If they are plastic you can throw them in a bleach bath for about 15 min each night.  If they are leather or fabric, baking soda or wiping them down with bleach would help.

Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Minmom3 on September 24, 2013, 11:22:08 PM
We own the house, and somehow I didn't notice the lack of hot water in the wash room when we walked through originally.  Plenty of hot water elsewhere in the house, and I WILL get hot piped into the washroom eventually!!!  Codes are loosely enforced here in the Santa Cruz mountains, so all kinds of things go on that would get busted elsewhere.  Besides which, I would NOT have moved into a home without hot water.  EVER.

Leather clogs, and I have 2 pairs, and alternate which pair I wear every day.  Not sure how fast they would dry out, and budget is tight, so I can't afford the shoe dryer somebody linked, although I bookmarked it, because it looks like a really good idea for my sweaty feet!  I've read elsewhere about filling cotton socks with baking soda and putting them in shoes to help de-stink

I DO use cold water Tide in the wash, and it works nicely for everything but the hosiery.  I think I'll try getting the Oxyclean and doing a pre soak - do I need to get a plastic tub for that?  Or would a steel pot or the kitchen sink work just as well? 

I can also use vinegar in the rinse water - I could put it in the fabric softener dispenser, couldn't I?  Not sure how to do it if not - my new washer (top loader) locks closed, and unlocking it means aborting the wash cycle...  Couldn't find a washer that allows you to soak at ALL, anywhere.  At least, not for the kind of money DH was willing to spend. I really miss that part of the older washers I've had over the years.  No more long soakings, no more stopping (but not draining) the wash just by raising the lid.  No more dying fabric or t-shirts in the washing machine, either.  Sigh. 

Oh, and I have an actual clothes line out back, which I use in any weather dry enough to work - so they get dried in the sun in decent weather.  Things smell very nice when line dried!  The hosiery get dried on a wood rack in the winter wet weather, which isn't as nice, but I don't put the hosiery in the dryer unless it's really an emergency, and then I heat up the dryer for something else, and then turn off the heat and put the hosiery in on air only.

OK, thanks for all the ideas.  I'll try them out. 

Melinda
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: MrsJWine on September 24, 2013, 11:29:57 PM
I put it in the fabric softener dispenser.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: PastryGoddess on September 25, 2013, 12:23:42 AM
Wait you can't get a washing machine with a soak function?  That should be illegal :)  I think using a metal pot should be fine.  No need to buy a plastic tub if you don't have to.

If you use a spray bottle with a diluted bleach mixture on your shoes, they should dry in by the time you need to wear them again.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Danika on September 25, 2013, 12:39:45 AM
I use Odor Eaters spray (http://www.amazon.com/Odor-Eaters-Sneaker-Spray-Powder-Bonus/dp/B00005LOGY) (Tinactin is another good brand) in my Crocs and Birkenstocks when they get stinky. They should work on your clogs, or even sprayed onto your socks.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: squeakers on September 25, 2013, 02:09:54 AM
http://www.managemylife.com/mmh/questions/240313-disable-lock-top-load-kenmore-washer?page=1&per_page=50

A guy on that link took his lock apart and finagled it with a second lock and some clips so that the lock did not lock shut except when they wanted it to. 

Better yet, further down in the comments, someone just bought the second lock and attached it to the lid... which allowed one to open the lid w/o aborting the wash cycle.

I'm glad we bought a cheap top load washer the last time around: I am often throwing one more thing in after the load has started.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Outdoor Girl on September 25, 2013, 08:32:24 AM
Leather clogs, and I have 2 pairs, and alternate which pair I wear every day.  ...  I've read elsewhere about filling cotton socks with baking soda and putting them in shoes to help de-stink

This should help, too.  I've had leather sandals that smelled really bad.  I just sprinkled the baking soda directly on the foot bed, left them over night, rinsed them off and dried them in the sun.  It worked.  Putting the baking soda in socks would be a lot less messy!
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Teenyweeny on September 25, 2013, 10:35:15 AM
I wear my ballet flats, without socks, all day every day in summer. Yes, they used to get stinky, to the point that I would get seriously anxious if I unexpectedly had to go to a 'shoes off' place.

They are now totally fixed, via the most simple method in the world. Place shoes in plastic bag. Place bag in freezer overnight.

That's it. The cold kills the bacteria that cause the smell. Plus you have some super cold shoes when you first put them on, in case that's ever been something that would interest you.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: ITSJUSTME on September 25, 2013, 11:11:21 AM
We have used ammonia and baking soda in the wash along with the detergent.

You might try the Borax and another product called Washing Soda.  or rub the foot part of the stockings with a bar of Fels Naphtha soap or another laundry soap bar called ZOTE.

We also used to have a product called Lestoil but that is probably for heavy stains & dirt, not sure about odor.

!!!Do NOT use ammonia & chlorine bleach, or any product containing chlorine bleach, together!!!
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: cwm on September 25, 2013, 12:38:30 PM
I wear my ballet flats, without socks, all day every day in summer. Yes, they used to get stinky, to the point that I would get seriously anxious if I unexpectedly had to go to a 'shoes off' place.

They are now totally fixed, via the most simple method in the world. Place shoes in plastic bag. Place bag in freezer overnight.

That's it. The cold kills the bacteria that cause the smell. Plus you have some super cold shoes when you first put them on, in case that's ever been something that would interest you.

I was going to come say that. It's worked really well for my shoes. I'm known as notoroious for stinky feet, and my socks seemed to be bearing the brunt of it, but only until I actually paid attention to the shoes. You said you had two pairs of shoes, so you'll be able to leave one in the freezer fully overnight without having to worry about them "thawing" for use the next day, too.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Danika on September 25, 2013, 01:50:53 PM
They are now totally fixed, via the most simple method in the world. Place shoes in plastic bag. Place bag in freezer overnight.

I'm so glad that you suggested this. I'm going to try it as well! Thanks!
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: DragonKitty on September 25, 2013, 02:54:18 PM
I found this recipe in one of my herbal magazines for foot oder (I used to *really* have a bad problem with it), tried it, and found that it works really well. Also gave it to my SIL for her teenage son, and she is happy with the results too.

You take about 3tablespoons of ground sage, add about 1/2teaspoon of ground cloves, mix them together, and put the mix into the shoes.  At first, do it daily, after a bit can go down to weekly, then to monthly.

An added advantage, besides it killing off the fungus that causes your feet to stink, it also kills Athlete's Foot fungus.  Both of those herbs/spices have very strong anti fungal properties.  And it smells nice  (to me).
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Minmom3 on September 25, 2013, 11:26:14 PM
My husband has food issues, and we have a rather small side-by-side fridge and freezer.  I think, even if there were room in the freezer for me to put my shoes, bagged securely or not, he would be extremely offended and I wouldn't hear the end of it for months.  Let alone let it happen nightly...  That is NEVER going to happen in this house, there simply isn't space for my shoes in there.  Three complete shelves of meat, one of veg, a large bin of ice and other odds and bobs in the door.  Hate this fridge, it's not super functional, as far as I'm concerned.

I'm going to bookmark that page about disabling the washer lid lock..  I'm going to do that, it kills me to not have a soak cycle.

You guys are a wonderful source of good ideas, thank you so much!
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Library Dragon on September 25, 2013, 11:44:31 PM
We use kitty litter to remove odors from books. You could fill socks with clean kitty litter and put the socks in the clogs each night.  You don't have to change the kitty litter more than once a week. 

For more shoes at once put kitty litter in a plastic tub and place the shoes on top, close with the lid and let them sit. 
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: mbbored on September 26, 2013, 12:27:04 AM
Also, try to find out what kind of water you have. We have very hard water here, and it makes it tricky to get some things clean. When our kids were in diapers, we used a liquid water softener (Calgon, in the laundry aisle) in each load, and it made a huge difference. It might be the water quality, not the cleaners you're using, or maybe some combination.

Thank you for this advice! I have very hard water as well and get frustrated that my clothes often come out dingy.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Danika on September 26, 2013, 01:09:23 AM
My husband has food issues, and we have a rather small side-by-side fridge and freezer.  I think, even if there were room in the freezer for me to put my shoes, bagged securely or not, he would be extremely offended and I wouldn't hear the end of it for months.  Let alone let it happen nightly...  That is NEVER going to happen in this house, there simply isn't space for my shoes in there.  ...

Ten minutes ago, I just put my Birkenstocks into a plastic ziptop bag and into the freezer. Teenyweeny said to put them there "overnight" not "every night."

I actually don't have very smelly feet. I bought this particular pair of Birkenstocks in 2006. I wear them every summer, maybe 5 months out of the year. This is the first month I've had problems with them and my feet being stinky. It could be some new over-the-counter medications I'm taking or it could just be the age of the shoes. But if the freezer trick works, I shouldn't have to put them in the freezer again for at least another year.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: crella on September 26, 2013, 06:17:05 AM
Febreeze makes a laundry additive for odors, I use if for my workout clothes, it works well.
Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Teenyweeny on September 26, 2013, 06:22:57 AM
My husband has food issues, and we have a rather small side-by-side fridge and freezer.  I think, even if there were room in the freezer for me to put my shoes, bagged securely or not, he would be extremely offended and I wouldn't hear the end of it for months.  Let alone let it happen nightly...  That is NEVER going to happen in this house, there simply isn't space for my shoes in there.  ...

Ten minutes ago, I just put my Birkenstocks into a plastic ziptop bag and into the freezer. Teenyweeny said to put them there "overnight" not "every night."

I actually don't have very smelly feet. I bought this particular pair of Birkenstocks in 2006. I wear them every summer, maybe 5 months out of the year. This is the first month I've had problems with them and my feet being stinky. It could be some new over-the-counter medications I'm taking or it could just be the age of the shoes. But if the freezer trick works, I shouldn't have to put them in the freezer again for at least another year.

Oh yeah, you don't have to do it every night! I don't have especially smelly feet, but I did wear these shoes every day, without socks, for months. I still only had to do the freezer trick once.

Title: Re: COLD water laundry question
Post by: Cami on September 26, 2013, 10:43:44 AM
Also, try to find out what kind of water you have. We have very hard water here, and it makes it tricky to get some things clean. When our kids were in diapers, we used a liquid water softener (Calgon, in the laundry aisle) in each load, and it made a huge difference. It might be the water quality, not the cleaners you're using, or maybe some combination.

Thank you for this advice! I have very hard water as well and get frustrated that my clothes often come out dingy.
We have super hard water too and even with a water softener, I too have been frustrated. So thanks for the tip!