Understanding Washer and Dryer Settings

There was once a time when all the washing had to be done by hand. Thankfully, we now have washing machines and dryers to help us out. Advancing technology lets us enjoy better features on these machines, but do we actually get to use them properly?

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You have to admit; the settings on your washing machine and dryer can be confusing. Looking at your machine and you see settings for temperature, time, the type of fabric, and so on. Because your clothes are made up of different materials, some of them need special settings so that they can be cleaned well. For example, you wouldn’t use the same settings to wash denim jeans for washing your stockings because it would ruin the stockings.

Knowing the right settings for your washing machine and dryer will go a long way in keeping your clothes clean and looking new. Go beyond the “normal” setting with this helpful guide:


Regular / normal

  • Uses strong agitation speeds and hot water to clean your clothes
  • For washing whites (socks, underwear, white T-shirts, undershirts)

Quick Wash

  • For lightly soiled garments that you may need to wear soon
  • Good for when you need your clothes to dry faster


  • For stained or dirty garments
  • Use this setting to add a soak to the start of a cycle

Permanent Press

  • For minimizing wrinkling in dress shirts or pants, and preserving wrinkle-free garments
  • Washes items with warm water and rinses with cold in a mild-agitation cycle


  • These include underwear, cotton-blend sweaters, linen shirts, dry-fit wear.
  • Uses cold water and light agitation to gently clean dirt


Regular / heavy

  • Uses hot air to dry your clothes faster
  • Works best for white clothes and colorless fabrics that can stand the heavy setting, like towels, sweats and jeans

Quick Dry

  • Uses high heat to dry items fast

Permanent Press

  • For colored garments
  • Uses medium heat to protect colored items from fading
  • Can also be a quick alternative to ironing


  • For delicate fabrics
  • Uses air that’s slightly above room temperature to slowly and gently dry your items

Air Fluff

  • For softening or loosening of items like stiff jeans or hand-washed sweaters
  • Recirculates room-temperature air to soften and add fullness to garments

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