To save wear and tear on clothes, run the washer and dryer for the minimum time needed to do the job. Long washing sessions can actually work dirt back into clothes. Pre-treat spots to save washing time. Commercial spot removers may be needed for tough spots.
Collar grime can be pre-treated with a homemade mix of liquid laundry soap or Woolite with water. Some people save leftover chips of soap in a jar until it is half full, and then fill the jar with water to make a spot-treating soap jelly.
Dish cloths and kitchen towels that have undesirable odors can be washed with a little ammonia added to the wash water (never use ammonia and bleach together).
Permanent press clothes that got cooked in a too-hot dryer can be helped by putting a slightly damp towel with them and running the dryer for another five minutes.
Consider putting hand washed delicate items in a colander to rinse. The water can be pressed out of them gently, then they can be dried by rolling them carefully in clean dry towels.
A sweater can be rolled in a towel, then pressed gently by hand or with a rolling pin to get most of the water out. Then lay the sweater out flat where air can circulate through it until it is dry.
Cheap laundry detergent tends to make more foam than better brands. The foam is hard on the washing machine and is also tough to rinse out of clothes.
Try using different amounts of detergent to learn the smallest amount that does a good cleaning job. If there are deposits on clothes when the washer stops that look like lint, you need to use a little more detergent.

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