washing clothes with hard water
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    Default washing clothes with hard water

    I would like to know what some of you use to reduce the discoloring of hard water to your clothes. I've read that adding Calgon to the laundry helps, or Borax. Do any of you use this? I've been using OxiClean in every load with Tide, but my whites are yellow and my darks are fading very quickly. I like the Tide because it smells good, and I like the OxiClean because it gets EVERY stain out, but I would like whiter clothes and not so much fading. Thanks!

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    Registered User momtoadiva's Avatar
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    I'm glad someone else ask this, I didn't really notice till I bought a white shirt at X-mas it was turning gray from washing ewww. I know it's b/c of our water. I just the other day bought a box of Borax and dumped it in with a box of Tide and mixed; though I have only done laundry once with this concoction I didn't see a difference in my white wash rags.

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    Registered User frugalfarmwife's Avatar
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    I just gave up on buying whites, they all turn rust colored really quickly here. We also go through socks a lot quicker, they just die a hard death with the hard water. My MIL buys us 2-3 huge packs of socks each year for Christmas each year.

    kj

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    Registered User leezza's Avatar
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    Tabitha,

    Can't help you with the whites.....(would love to know how to make the hubbies T shirts last longer).

    But on the darks.....I have noticed that if I wash in cold and hang them dry it really seems to save the colors well.

    Our water is so hard that I use 2 caps instead of 1 of the fabric softner in every load I do.

    JMHO,
    leezza

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    Registered User joyofsix's Avatar
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    My mom always used 20 Mule Team Borax. Our water was very, very hard. I don't know if it made a difference or not. Like Farmwife, I pretty much just quit buying white.
    Mom to Emma, Spencer, Connor, Lily,Fletcher, Amelia and Adeline.

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    May not be good for clothing but I add a half cup of powder dishwasher soap to the whites and let them soak a bit. It does seem to make a difference!
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    Registered User Monner 1's Avatar
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    I know what you girls are talking about. We have well water and there is a ton of iron in it. We have a softener but it doesn't help with the iron unless we use rust out salt pellets. I have just about given up on decent looking whites unless we use them. The book for the softener says we shouldn't use them all the time since it will shorten the life of the water softener but I don't care. If I don't use them my toilet looks like someone used it and didn't flush because the toilet stays yellow. I love the country living but sometimes it just plain outright gets annoying but I guess it is better than having annoying neighbors.

    Monner

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    Registered User mmy2grls's Avatar
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    I used to have a house with hard water. I had to buy a watersoftner and use the rust out pellets and my laundry was decent after that.

    I tried all kinds of things to add to the wash before that and couldn't find anything that worked good.

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    Registered User eyrehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monner 1 View Post
    I know what you girls are talking about. We have well water and there is a ton of iron in it. We have a softener but it doesn't help with the iron unless we use rust out salt pellets. I have just about given up on decent looking whites unless we use them. The book for the softener says we shouldn't use them all the time since it will shorten the life of the water softener but I don't care. If I don't use them my toilet looks like someone used it and didn't flush because the toilet stays yellow. I love the country living but sometimes it just plain outright gets annoying but I guess it is better than having annoying neighbors.

    Monner
    This is exactly how things are at my house!! We need to get a new water softener, as the one we installed when we moved in, was a used one. It works, but it's almost 15 years old. I am constantly having to remove the sprayer head from my kitchen sink to clean the screen, there is so much rust/iron in our water! UGH!! Otherwise I'll have no water pressure!

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    Registered User wildflowerpa's Avatar
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    auto dishwashing soap does work. Dependiong on how set the discoloration is you might need a couple treatments. I do this once a month or so

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    You ladies are genius I have several boxes of Electrosol that was given to me, don't like to use it in my dishwasher (just doesn't work well for me) and didn't want to just throw it out. Whoo-hoo thanks for the tip

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    Registered User betharoo0's Avatar
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    I'm going to try the calgon... I'll let you know how it works!

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    I did try Calgon, and though it did make my clothes and towels softer I haven't yet seen a difference in the coloration. Is there a way to reverse the effects already on your clothes? Also, I thought it was really expensive. I bought the small liquid bottle just to see if it would work and it cost close to $5.00. Not sure yet if it's worth it. Certainly not frugal! lol

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    Registered User suki's Avatar
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    I've had well water most of my life and no water softener. We have lime in our water, not iron so rust is not a problem but graying is.

    I have been using Arm & Hammer detergent for years it works really well in hard water and is safe for septic. I have added borax to whites and it helps, but mostly I just add some bleach to the load and we're good to go. A little bit of bleach in my weekly laundry will not kill the bacteria in my septic system significantly... and I add beneficial bacteria once every three months.

    I haven't tried the Electrasol tip, but I will. I agree, it's awful for the dishwasher (doesn't clean very well) and I was given a big tub of it. I'll try it with my whites next go round... Thanks!

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    My water isn't hard here,but we have lime. I'm getting ready to try the hm laundry recipe. I was checking out this book

    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Fastest-Cheapest-Clean-Everything-Consumer/dp/0671255002/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1203818702&sr=8-2"]Amazon.com: Fastest, Cheapest, Best Way to Clean Everything. by the Eds of Consumer Guide (288p): Consumer Guide: Books[/ame]

    borrowed it from library and it has a lot of tips.

    I'll try to get on here and type some of it up,but it's quite a bit-I'll see if I can find links maybe.

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