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Reducing The Environmental Impact Of Your Laundry Loads

We may be causing more environmental damage with our washing habits than we thought. According to a study conducted at Plymouth University, each load of laundry we wash releases more than 700,000 microscopic fibres and microplastics into the water, many of which end up in our environment, where they endanger ecosystems and harm various animal species.

A growing body of evidence suggests that exposure to and ingestion of microplastics may pose health risks, and there is fear that this trend could accelerate over the following decades.

However, it is not necessary to spend all day washing clothes by hand or to buy an expensive state-of-the-art washing machine in order to save money, minimise energy consumption, limit family exposure to chemicals, and avoid water pollution.

A few simple adjustments to your laundry routine can have a significant impact, and you probably already have many of the finest natural laundry solutions on hand. From using less harmful soaps to restrategising your laundry days, here are our top tips for reducing the environmental impact of your laundry loads.

First Things First

Dirt and debris can become permanent with the application of heat, so it's important to make sure everything is clean before you begin.

● Make sure all items you're using are clean, including clothing, iron board, and iron.

● Check the iron for dirt marks and wipe them off.

● Make sure the iron board has a clean cover.

The Environmental Impact Of Your Laundry Days

Did you know that your choice of detergent can have a huge impact on the environment? While detergents may help us keep our laundry and dishes clean, they can have a negative impact on the environment.

Phosphate-containing detergents can cause eutrophication in freshwater bodies, which is a process where the nitrogen in the detergent reacts with phosphorus in the water and causes an overgrowth of algae. This depletes the oxygen in the water, bringing serious harm to the ecosystem.

Surfactants, which are chemicals found in detergents that reduce the surface tension of oil and water, are also toxic to aquatic life. They can break down the protective mucus layer on fish species, making it easier for them to absorb pollutants and pesticides. Unfortunately, these chemicals don't biodegrade naturally and can only be further broken down into smaller toxic byproducts.

The aforementioned impacts on aquatic life and ecosystems are only the tip of the laundry detergent environmental hazard iceberg. Many detergents are still packaged in bulky plastic containers that can't be reused or recycled, despite efforts by certain manufacturers to phase them out. Most Australian homes buy detergent biweekly or monthly, leaving hundreds of thousands of empty containers to gather in landfills at an alarming rate.

How Can You Reduce Your Environmental Impact?

Choose detergents without synthetic fragrances, phosphates, or hormone-disrupting surfactants like nonylphenol ethoxylate.

● When shopping for detergents, look for products that are labelled SLS/SLES free, have a neutral pH, are plant-based, and are cruelty-free.

● Make your own eco- and skin-friendly fabric softener instead of purchasing it: Combine 1-2 tablespoons of white vinegar with a few drops of your preferred essential oil.

These are less harmful to the environment than their conventional counterparts, and many eco-friendly manufacturers even provide biodegradable packaging.

A More Efficient Approach To Plastic Packaging

One great way to reduce the environmental impact of laundry is to switch to concentrated laundry detergent. It comes in smaller, more compact containers and requires less packaging, meaning less plastic ends up in our landfills.

Plus, it takes less energy to manufacture, ship and store, as it weighs less and takes up less space. If you do find yourself with excess packaging, be sure to recycle it!

A More Biodegradable Approach To Packaging

Using bottles manufactured from entirely biodegradable materials is a great step in reducing the environmental impact of laundry. Aim for packaging with a cardboard exterior and a bladder made from a starchy plant plastic that is able to break down over time. While the bottle's plastic cap may still not be fully biodegradable, you can recycle it according to the manufacturer's instructions.

The Most Trusted Way Of Reducing The Environmental Impact Of Your Laundry

Have you ever considered how using a laundromat can actually be better for the environment than using your own washing machine at home? Laundromats use commercial-grade equipment designed to use less water and energy than residential machines. For example, The Busy Bubbles laundromats in Australia use equipment that is up to 40% more efficient than most residential washers. This means that you have a better clean with less water and energy usage.

Additionally, by using a laundromat, you are helping to reduce the amount of wastewater that is released into the environment from home machines.

Our Commitment To Our Community And Environment

Why not make your laundry days more efficient and eco-friendly? Here at The Busy Bubbles Laundrette, our self service machines are designed for maximum efficiency. Our T1200 washer can take up to 8 laundry baskets of washing, making it one of the largest self-serve washers in Western Sydney.

We use the highest quality SLS/SLES-free detergents and always buy in bulk, reducing our contribution of plastic bottles into landfills. As a local laundromat operating for over 30 years in the Penrith and Western Suburbs, we believe in community, service excellence and environmental awareness every step of the way.

Using a laundromat can help make a positive impact on the environment while keeping your clothes clean! Visit our page and discover more about our machinery capabilities, services and pricing today.

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