Can You Run A Washing Machine With Just Cold Water?

Have you ever wondered if it is ok to wash your clothes in your washing machine using only cold water? Wonder no more, for we have researched this question, and we have the answer for you.

Most people are not aware that some clothes and types of stains benefit from getting washed using a cold water cycle on your washing machine. So, yes, you can run a washing machine with just cold water.

Just as there are clothes that benefit from a cold-water wash, there are those that benefit from warm water washing too. Proceed to the succeeding sections to find out when to opt for cold water or hot water when using your washing machine. Read on!

Washing machine with towels in laundry room interior, Can You Run A Washing Machine With Just Cold Water?

Which Clothes Are Best Washed With Cold Water?

Close-up of a woman with a laundry basket washing clothes

Cold water is ideal when washing delicate clothes. Actually, 70 to 90 degrees is the best water temperature for some clothes. Use a detergent specifically for cold water washing for best results. Alternatively, using a cold or warm water detergent works just as well.

The Tide PODS laundry detergent for cold and warm water is available on Amazon. Check it out through this link.

How To Wash Acetate Fabrics?

Acetate fabrics are often used for soft garments like formal attire and party clothes. Draperies and home furnishings also use acetate fabrics.

Wash any acetate fabric clothing with cold water that is no more than 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Even clothing that is made from an acetate fabric blended with another fabric should be washed with cold water.

Do not twist any clothing that is made of acetate fabric. Let it dry naturally, or lay it down on a dry towel.

How To Wash Acrylic Fabrics?

Acrylic fibers are manmade. It is a combination of acrylonitrile—a petrochemical—and various chemicals to improve how it reacts to dyes. Acrylic fibers can be modified to produce different properties that match their uses. For example, acrylic fiber can be made to look like cotton or wool and can be found in sweaters, fleeces, or socks.

Always turn acrylic clothing inside out and wash them with cold water that is no more than 86 degrees. Use a fabric softener to get rid of static electricity.

Acrylic clothing can be tumbled dry using the cool tumble setting on your dryer. Use dryer sheets to prevent static electricity when drying acrylic clothing.

How To Wash Sports Clothes?

Black laundry care washing instructions clothes label on blue jersey polyester sport shirt

Breathable synthetic fabrics make most of the sports clothes that we see. Elastane—a synthetic fabric commercially known as Lycra or Spandex—is the most common material used for making sports clothes. Nylon, polyester, and acrylic are often combined with Elastane.

Sports clothes are commonly hydrophobic, meaning they do not absorb water very well. This is why they dry fast too. However, their disadvantage is that they hold on to odors even after you’ve washed them.

Hot water can easily damage the material that makes up sports clothing and ruin its elasticity. This leads to shrinking and a shorter lifespan.

Dry sports clothes first—preferably under the sun—before you wash them. Turn them inside out before you wash them because odor-causing bacteria accumulate on the inside of the sports clothes.

Use a detergent made for cold water, and never use fabric softeners on sports clothes. Fabric softeners leave a layer that does not work well with the fibers of sports clothes. This layer makes it harder for the detergent to penetrate the fibers and clean them thoroughly.

One more thing to remember when washing your sports clothes is to never use machine dry. Let them dry naturally in the air.

How To Wash Wool Fabrics?

Interior of a real laundry room with a washing machine at home

The fleece of a sheep is the natural source of wool. It breathes easily and is non-allergenic. However, wool easily shrinks unless combined with other fabrics. It is also challenging to wash.

If the wool garment can be washed by hand, then it should always be washed with cold water and inside-out. Match the cold water with gentle cycles, a wool washing detergent, and a fabric conditioner.

If the wool garment should be hand washed only, then you should never wash it in your washing machine. Handwash-only wool should be soaked inside-out in a solution of lukewarm water and detergent for wool. Rinse it in warm water after soaking, then do a second rinse with cold water.

When drying your wool garments, never tumble them dry. Machine drying can trigger shrinking in wool. Let your wool garment dry naturally on a hanger or lay them over a clean dry towel.

How To Wash Cashmere?

Cashmere should be treated like wool when washing it. If it can be hand-washed, then it should be washed with cold water using a detergent that is made for wool. Use a fabric conditioner for your cashmere fabrics.

Just like wool, cashmere should naturally dry. Never dry it by machine. You can also lay it on a clean and dry towel and roll the towel and the cashmere gently.

How To Wash Cotton Garments?

Grease stains on cotton should be washed with warm water and detergent. However, all other types of stains should be washed with cold water. Soak your garment to get rid of tough stains. The length of time of the soak depends on the stain.

Light-colored cotton fabrics can be washed in warm or cold water. You should always use cold water on cotton garments with a dark color to protect their color from fading.

How To Wash Linen?

Linen is a natural fiber that is made from the flax plant. It is one of the oldest fibers used for making clothing in ancient times. Flax is a plant that is cultivated for its fiber and for its seeds. Linen is the main material in many summer clothing, bags, aprons, bedding, and towels.

Linen items with dark colors should be washed in cold water. Cold water protects the color used in the linen, thus preventing the colors from fading.

You can tumble dry linen items using cold temperatures. Remove linen items from the dryer before they are completely dry to prevent them from becoming stiff. Hang the slightly damp garments to dry naturally.

How To Wash Modal Garments?

Modal is another example of a manmade fabric that falls under the rayon family. It is a semi-synthetic fiber made from beech tree cellulose. Modal is a versatile fabric that is used in many products like pajamas, underwear, towels, bathrobes, and bedsheets.

If your modal item can be washed by machine, wash it with cold water. Use a cold cycle to tumble dry your modal garment.

How To Wash Jeans?

Jeans are best washed with cold water. Always wash jeans inside-out to protect their color. Use a detergent that is formulated for cold water washing and clothes with deep color for the best result.

You can tumble dry jeans but remember to remove them from the dryer while they’re still slightly damp. This prevents your jeans from getting creased.

What To Wash With Warm Water?

Textured white natural cotton towel background photo with selective focus.

More durable clothes should be washed with warm water. Use warm water on white cotton fabrics or soiled linen to clean them more thoroughly.

104 degrees is the perfect temperature for washing tough stains and heavily soiled everyday items. This is also the best temperature for washing towels, as well.

Wash clothing made of viscose fabric in lukewarm water, and never wash them in your washing machine. This fabric becomes brittle when wet. Thus, it is best to wash it gently by hand.

Underwear and light-colored bed linen can be washed with warm water to clean them more thoroughly. Use a detergent that is ideal for warm water when you wash these items.

Exceptions To The Rule

It is normal to mix different fabrics to create different properties that match the purpose of the clothing or item. The washing needs of mixed fabrics can be completely different from the washing needs of the fabric in its pure state.

Therefore, it is a good idea to always check the care label—or laundry tags—of the garment before you wash it. There are symbols with numbers—that symbolize the maximum water temperature that you can use—that show whether the garment should be washed with cold or hot water. Some symbols tell you whether the garment can be washed in your washing machine or not.

Some care labels specifically state in words that a garment should be washed with cold or warm water only. Always follow the instructions in the care label to get the best results when washing your garments and avoid shrinking, stretching, and premature fading of your clothes.

What Are Dryer Sheets?

Hand holding and put dryer sheet into a tumble clothes dryer.

Dryer sheets are a combination of liquid softeners, lubricants, and fragrances that is coated on a fabric layer. This fiber is often polyester or cellulose. Including a dryer sheet in a load of laundry during drying reduces the amount of static electricity that can accumulate on the clothes in your dryer.

Bounce dryer sheets and laundry fabric softener is available on Amazon. Check it out through this link.


Some clothes are made to be washed in cold water, while some clothes cannot be washed in your washing machine at all. Always check the care label and combine the clothes that should be washed in cold or hot water in a single wash load.

If you found this article interesting, why not check the two articles below too:

4 Best Places To Keep Your Laundry Basket.

How To Remove Chlorophyll Stains [From Carpet, Clothing, Denim, & Skin]?

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