Laundry 101: A how-to guide for Westminster freshmen

Laundry piles up in Sloss Hall laundry room as students do not retrieve their loads. PHOTO BY ALLIE KENNEBECK.

BY ALLIE KENNEBECK 
STAFF WRITER

When a high school graduate makes the transition to college, one of the most popular questions the incoming freshman is asked is “Do you know how to do laundry?” This is usually followed up with an unsure response such as “I believe so” or “I hope so.”

Doing laundry is a basic lifelong skill that every college student must learn to master. As seen by some of the laundry rooms in the Quad, it is clear that many freshmen still have a lot to learn about how to do their laundry, or at least how to do so in the Quad’s communal facilities. The following tips can help students do laundry more effectively and more efficiently.


Doing laundry requires a certain amount of responsibility and reliability. Often times, students will leave their clothes in a machine for hours at a time, causing a buildup and a longer wait for other students who need to use the facility. By setting timers and reminders for when their laundry is ready for pickup, students can make the room much cleaner and allow the process to run much more smoothly.

Using timers and other reminders can make the process more efficient.

Another attribute that a college student must acquire in order to do laundry is simple courtesy. Upon entering the laundry room in Sloss Hall, a musty stench wafts through the air. This is caused by wet clothes being enclosed in the washers long after they are finished being washed. Students should not only try to transfer their washed closed to a dryer in a reasonable time but also should make sure that washer doors are kept open when the washers are not in use. This will eliminate the smell that overwhelms the laundry room.

Being timely can help eliminate foul odors caused by wet clothes.

There have been many complaints that some people’s clothes are not getting dried all the way, leading to people suggesting that new washers be bought. For the time being, however, they learn their way around the current washers and dryers. If a person’s clothes are not completely dry after one cycle, reset the dryer. Usually, by that time, the clothes will be dried sufficiently.

It may take multiple cycles for clothes to dry with the current facilities in the Quad.

Students have also reported that the Quad driers have burned their clothes. This issue relates again to taking clothes out of the dryer right when they are finished. The insides of the driers are steel, so after one cycle, the walls are extremely hot. If one were to leave their clothes sitting on this hot metal, they would be susceptible to getting holes burnt in their clothes. Ensuring that clothes are dried all the way and that they are taken directly out of the dryer when they should be will help to prevent any damage to clothes.

Leaving clothes in the steel-interior dryers leaves them vulnerable to burning.

Following each of these pointers will help create a more pleasant, more efficient laundry environment, which in turn will make the annoying chore of doing laundry a little more bearable for everyone.

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