how long does it take to wash clothes?

How Long Does It Take to Wash Clothes (and Do Laundry)?

As you go about your laundry duties, you may wonder how long does it take to wash clothes? Understanding the duration involved can help you plan your day more efficiently, especially on busy weekends.

So how long does it take to wash clothes? Washing clothes takes anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour, depending on factors such as:

  • The wash cycle you choose
  • The amount of clothes
  • The level of dirtiness
  • The condition of your machine

Remember, you must also account for prep time and drying durations. More specific cycle types, such as normal and delicate cycles, can impact the length of time your laundry takes as well.

Knowing what to expect when washing your clothes can help you make informed decisions on which cycles to use and how to manage your laundry schedules.

5 Factors That Affect Washing Time

In order to better understand how long it takes to wash clothes, it’s important to consider several factors that can influence the time it takes to wash laundry.

average wash time for clothes and laundry

1. Type of Washing Machine

Your choice of washing machine can have a significant impact on how long it takes to wash your clothes. For instance, front-loading machines typically use less water than top-loading machines, which can result in shorter cycle times. On the other hand, top-loading machines with agitators can take longer to complete a cycle due to the added friction caused by the agitator.

Pro Tip: One factor that can extend wash times and negatively impact how clean your laundry gets is a dirty filter. Samsung is a popular washer, and here’s where the filter is located on your Samsung top load washer.

2. Load Size

The size of the laundry load will also affect the washing time. Smaller loads generally take less time to wash, while larger loads may require a longer cycle to ensure all items are thoroughly cleaned.

3. Wash Cycle Selected

The wash cycle you select plays a crucial role in the washing time. Standard cycles usually take 30 minutes to an hour, but this can vary depending on the specific cycle chosen. For example, delicate cycles may take less time, while heavy-duty cycles can take much longer to complete..

4. Soil Level

The level of dirtiness of your clothes can also impact the washing time. Heavily soiled items may require a longer cycle to remove all the dirt and grime effectively, while lightly soiled clothes can be washed in a shorter amount of time.

5. Temperature Settings

Lastly, the temperature settings you choose can influence the time it takes to wash your clothes. Cold water cycles generally take less time to complete, while warm or hot cycles may take longer due to the additional time required to heat the water (source).

NOTE: the cleanliness of your washing machine can also impact wash times, so it’s always important to conduct regular washer cleanings.

By understanding these factors, you can better estimate the time it will take to wash your clothes and plan your laundry routine accordingly.

How Long Does It Take to Wash Clothes? Average Times

laundry washing times can vary

Understanding the average washing times for various types of washing machines and methods can help you plan your laundry days effectively. In this section, we’ll address how long does it take to wash clothes by discussing the washing times for top-loading machines, front-loading machines, and hand washing.

Top-Loading Machines

Typically have a normal wash cycle between 60 and 80 minutes, depending on the brand and model. However, these times can vary based on the chosen settings and load size. Some quick wash cycles take as little as 35 minutes, while heavy-duty or bulky cycles may exceed 80 minutes.

Front-Loading Machines

Front-loading washing machines usually have slightly faster normal wash cycles compared to top-loading machines. A typical front-loader might take between 50 minutes to an hour to complete a normal wash cycle. As with top-loaders, the time it takes can vary depending on the settings, load size, and specific machine model.

Some front-loading machines may have quick wash cycles that last just 30 minutes or less.

Hand Washing

Hand washing clothes is a more time-consuming method compared to using a washing machine. On average, it takes between 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours 30 minutes to wash clothes by hand. How long it takes to hand wash your clothes can depend on factors such as the type and size of the garments, the amount of dirt, and personal washing techniques.

Washing delicate items or sheets by hand may take 60 to 90 minutes, followed by air drying or drying using sunlight.

3 Tips to Reduce Washing Time

1. Pre-Treat Stains

To save time, it’s essential to pre-treat stains on your clothes. Quickly dealing with stains makes them easier to remove, reducing the need for multiple washes. Apply a stain remover or some detergent directly onto the stain and let it sit for a few minutes before washing. This will help loosen the stain and make it easier to wash out.

If you have to soak grass stains, check out how to remove grass stains from jeans.

2. Sorting Clothes

Properly sorting your clothes can also save you time in the long run. Separate your clothes by color, fabric type, and washing temperature requirements. This will not only prevent accidental color bleeding but also ensure that your laundry is cleaned effectively using the right settings.

Organizing your laundry may seem time-consuming initially, but it will result in more efficient washing and less time spent rewashing clothes.

3. Use a High-Efficiency Washing Machine

high efficiency washing machine for laundry

Investing in a high-efficiency washing machine can be a game-changer for reducing washing time. These machines typically have faster wash cycles while still ensuring optimal cleaning results. For instance, many models have a Quick Wash cycle that can clean lightly soiled clothes in 15 to 40 minutes.

Additionally, high-efficiency machines use less water, which means they need less time to fill and drain, further reducing washing time. As a bonus, they are often more energy-efficient, saving both time and money on utility bills.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take the average person to do laundry?

We’ve already answered in great detail the question about how long does it take to wash clothes. But to recap, the average time it takes to do laundry is around 1.5 to 2 hours, depending on the size of the load and the type of washing machine used.
Can you wash clothes in 20 minutes?

Yes, it is possible to wash clothes in 20 minutes using a quick wash cycle. However, it is important to note that this cycle is designed for lightly soiled clothes and may not be suitable for heavily soiled items or delicate fabrics.
How often should 1 person do laundry?

The frequency of doing laundry depends on individual circumstances such as the amount of clothing owned, how often they are worn, and personal hygiene practices. However, on average, most people do laundry once a week.
Is it OK to wash clothes on quick wash?

Yes, it is generally safe to wash clothes on a quick wash cycle. However, it is important to read the garment care label to ensure that the fabric can withstand the cycle. Additionally, heavily soiled items may require a longer cycle to ensure they are properly cleaned.

Final Thoughts on How Long Does It Take to Wash Clothes

how long does it take to do your laundry

How long does it take to wash clothes? Washing your clothes can take anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour, depending on factors such as the wash cycle you choose, the load size, and the level of dirtiness of your laundry.

In general, a normal wash cycle takes between 50 minutes to an hour to complete. Delicate items can be dried in only about 15 minutes while heavy-duty materials like towels might take up to three hours to dry.

It’s essential to understand the different settings and wash cycle options available on your washing machine to ensure optimal results. Make sure to consider wash temperatures as well, knowing that a 40°C wash may be more effective at removing tough stains, while lower temperature settings provide adequate everyday cleaning and energy savings.

You now have a better understanding and can easily answer the age-old question “how long does it take to wash clothes?” and the factors that influence washing time. By using this knowledge wisely, you’ll be able to plan your laundry routine effectively and ensure your clothes come out clean and fresh every time.

Ken Lyons
Ken Lyons is one of the founding members of Cleaner Digs. He is also the senior editor and contributing author. Ken has owned and operated two cleaning companies in the past: one commercial and one that serviced residential customers. He writes for Clean Digs to share his professional expertise on cleaning and organization. He's been a fastidious cleaning nut and writing about it for more than a decade.