Does Hot Water Damage Washing Machine? (Explained)

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The washing machine and its hot water system are no doubt one of the best innovations of recent times, this device has made life so much easier, allowing us to save up on hours of time and energy. It’s only normal that we do everything we can to maintain it. By not doing damaging things to it, right?

Although it uses hot water, the question still begs to be asked. Does hot water damage washing machine?

It heightens the possibility of mold, grease, and smells occurring, within and around the machine. And to top it off, it’ll result in higher machine costs as the drum requires more conventional cleaning to avoid mold.

Let’s go deeper.

What Are the Washer Water Temperatures?

In almost all clothes washers, the hot water setting is 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 Celsius).

You can inspect your washer guide and your home water heater settings for definite figures. If you possess a washer with a steam flow, that will improve the conditions in each load.

The warm water setting ranges from 110 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit (43.3-32.2 degrees Celsius).

See Also: Can You Use Washing Machine Hose on Water Heater?

Does Hot Water Damage Washing Machine?

The washing machine has provisions for the use of hot water, and using hot water to wash in it, will not damage it per se. Damage can only happen when you go over the limit. The damage that could be done though, is to your clothes and their fabric make-up.

Washing in hotter conditions can be said to deliver superior effects compared to lower temperatures.

It is not advised for all clothes to be washed at a high temperature, it should only be for hefty, soiled items like towels, bed sheets, and baby’s nappies. It can also be useful when washing clothing that has fat-found stains like oil or butter.

Hot washes can also be utilized for heavily soiled white clothes but it is indicated that you examine the label first to confirm it is okay to do so.

One point to hold in mind is that washing at high temperatures also brings about a huge electricity bill, as a high proportion of energy is required.

If you are searching for a rapid cycle to wash your clothes then maybe a hot wash isn’t the best alternative as it runs on a longer flow because of the extra heating time.

Some fabrics and clothes are too delicate for heat so you must study the labels to confirm that the clothing is hot wash eligible, to prevent ruining your clothes.

When washing colorful clothing, be conscious that hot temperatures could affect colors to run into each or dwindle and shrinking could happen.

Pros & Cons of Washing Clothes in Hot Water

We’ll break the effects of washing cloths in hot water into two broad categories, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages. Let’s proceed.

Pros of Washing Clothes in Hot Water

1. Hot Water Gets the Job Done

Hot water is an adequate alternative for lived-in clothes, exercise pants, socks, and boxers, for starters. It’s not the most delicate temperature, it rides through grime and odors. Hot water has the most sanitary power because it heightens the chemical reaction of the detergent.

This implies lessened wash times and smaller detergent. If you want to ensure that your clothes will scent clean and fresh tomorrow, yes, wash them in hot water.

2. Hot Water Destroys Germs

Washing clothes in hot water is outstanding protection against germs, bacteria, and viruses.

To eradicate germs and allergens, you must clean them in temperatures of 140 F or more, so you can throw the possibly infected bed linens and clothes into a hot wash and let the water do what it does best. Destroy germs!

But then, fixing your hot water tank at 140 F can be hazardous, particularly if you have children. A more cautious alternative would be to utilize a washer with a sanitizing setting.

If your washer has a sanitized sequence that meets NSF principles, it will eliminate 99.9% of bacteria, viruses, and allergens. If the water in your washer isn’t getting hot sufficiently to execute the germs, you can utilize white vinegar.

When mixed with your regular laundry soap or baking soda, white vinegar cleans your laundry and has it all fresh and neat.

3. Hot Water Molecules Move Fast

Hot water will eliminate water-soluble smudges like tomato sauce, wine, and blood more rapidly.

The faster the water molecules are running, the bigger their chances of blasting themselves into the cloth to unlock and eliminate dirt, grease, and stains.

That all sounds amazing right? Just a tiny snag.

Sadly, all that cleaning energy appears at an expense, an expense that might be too high.

See Also: Can Washing Machine Vibrations Damage House?


1. Hot Water is Environmentally Unfriendly

Over the earlier decade or so, humans have evolved to be intensifying concerns about the environment.

A lot of the energy utilized to wash a bag of laundry is directed directly into warming up the water, up to a third of the energy required to wash a load runs into generating the heat.

That energy is generated through electricity, which is primarily developed by fossil fuels.

When the power plant labors harder to provide your laundry machines with enough power for the hot wash, more and more byproducts are discharged into the earth’s atmosphere.

Analyze how much laundry you do in a week, and then speculate about how it will interfere with your power bill and influence the environment.

2. Hot Water Can Damage or Discolor Clothing

When again you’re working out your laundry, check well what type of clothing you’re washing in hot water.

Hot water can result in bright colors running into each other and even fading, and can decrease particular kinds of fabric.

Hot water can also harm certain synthetic textures like polyester, nylon, and vinyl. The heat pulls apart the fibers and can wreck the fabric.

Let’s talk deeper about that in the next point.

3. Hot Water Can Destroy Delicate Fabrics

It’s often suggested to utilize cold water for soft fabrics, like anything created with lace, wool, or silk.

Hot water can put pressure on thin fabrics and can prompt them to diminish, fade, and permanently crease.

These fabrics are susceptible to temperature and cleaning solvents, so utilize a detergent created for delicates.

If you don’t hand-wash these items, contemplate moving them through a cold wash on the peaceful cycle rather.

How to Choose the Best Water Temperature for Laundry

1. Read Garment Care Labels Carefully: This cannot be over-emphasized. Take your time to examine the care tags on each piece of clothing. You’ll get the data you need to determine both the best water conditions and the kind of washing cycle. Heeding the directions on the label is particularly crucial if you are a laundry amateur or if the garment is fresh.

2. Sort Dirty Laundry: After you’ve surveyed the labels, it’s time to portion the dirty clothes by color, fabric weight, and washing temperature. You’ll get nicer outcomes in regulating lint, eliminating soil, and deterring color swapping if you wash identical kinds of fabric together.

3. Opt for Cold Water First: If the label isn’t there or vague, wash stained clothes, especially colored clothes, with cold water. Utilizing the cold water setting will affect the least harm to fabrics like shrinking, fading, or color bleeding. If you are not fulfilled with the stain removal outcomes, however, you can then proceed to warm or hot water.

Once you have some understanding under your belt, you’ll see that some fabrics can be tidied up under more than one condition.

4. Set the Rinse Cycle Temperature: One tip that functions with all wash cycles and kinds of fabrics is to utilize a cold water rinse. Rinse water has a slight impact on stain removal or cleaning, so cold water serves just as well to rinse away detergents and rescinded soil.

Fix the washer dial on cold rinse and leave it for every pack. You’ll conserve money by not spending to heat the water.

Related Questions

What happens when a washing machine overheats?

It can set your washing machine on fire.

How do you know when your washing machine motor is burnt out?

Fix the multimeter on the lowest setting, or RX1. Stroke a probe to a metal tab. You should obtain a 0 reading or a number near 0. A continual reading implies a failed motor.

Can a washing machine motor burn out?

Yes, overloading the machine can make it burn out.

Why does my washer smell like burnt rubber?

It means the belt is overheating, so you should replace it.

Why is my washing machine motor not working?

It is caused by worn-out carbon brushes.

See Also: Stop Washing Machine From Moving When Spinning


Does hot water damage washing machines? It doesn’t, but it increases the chances of the washing machine developing faults.

And it’ll also take such a large output of power. Nonetheless, always follow the precautions.