Doing your laundry is one of those great, sometimes irritating tasks that everyone seems to learn for the first time in college. If you’re used to having your own laundry machines at home, it can feel weird to do your laundry with a room full of other people’s clothes. Sometimes, you have to figure out what to do when the many people in your dorm don’t know the proper…etiquette of sharing a laundry room.
We’ve already told you guys our secrets for laundry success, but today we’ll share the three most important rules of shared laundry room etiquette. Commit these to memory and your lovely neighbors will thank you!
3 Rules for a Happy College Laundry Room:
1. Time your washes and promptly remove your clothes from the machines.
Nothing is more annoying than seeing what could be an empty machine filled with old, wet, molding clothes that have been sitting there for hours.
To keep your dorm-mates happy and avoid returning to find your clothes on the floor, or worse, missing (this has happened to people we know), always time your washes and remove your clothes from the machines on time! Yes, I know Netflix is calling with all four seasons of Vampire Diaries, but with timers available on every smartphone (and timer apps for computers in abundance), you have no excuse to leave your precious wardrobe behind.
If you absolutely can’t be there to pick up your clothes when they’re done, plan to do your laundry at a different, more convenient time! The great thing about laundry rooms in most residence halls is that they’re 24-hour. So pick a time when you’ll be there to see your clothes through to the end – get up early if you have to. Your dorm-mates, and wardrobe, will thank you.
2. Keep the cleaning room clean.
I once walked into my laundry room and stepped in a giant puddle of detergent because someone had spilled it and didn’t clean up. Let’s just say, my sock monkey slippers weren’t happy, and neither was I.
To show courtesy for your neighbors and thank your school for generously providing the washers and dryers, try to keep the room and equipment clean. Old dryer sheets, empty detergent bottles, and especially lint from the dryers, should all be thrown away. Once that lint builds up in the machines, it can be a fire hazard, and you wouldn’t want to be responsible for burning down your dorm building. That wouldn’t make your neighbors happy either.
3. Don’t use the laundry room as a “hang out” spot.
It seems logical that while you and your friends wait for your laundry to finish, you should all just set up post in the laundry room – can’t forget your clothes that way, right? But while this is a good idea in theory, there is a problem: laundry rooms are generally quite small – so this can be really inconvenient for your neighbors.
If you’ve never done it, take it from me: It’s extremely difficult to move a load of laundry from the washer to the dryer when there’s a small army of people in the way. It’s like a very tragic game of sardines, in which you aren’t winning.
Instead of convening in the laundry room, move your encampment to the common area of your dorm. If you all hang out there, not only do you have a chance to help the unfortunate soul carrying five baskets of laundry to their room, but you also open yourself up to meeting and making friends with your neighbors. Two birds with one stone!
I know these rules may not be common sense for everyone, but if you commit them to memory, your dorm-mates will thank you for your good manners… and you just might score some good laundry karma. (Who knows, maybe you’ll bump into a cute neighbor asking for a dryer sheet!)
Now we want to hear from you. Do you practice good laundry room etiquette? Do you have any laundry pet peeves? What are your laundry room rules? Comment below!