Q:

How can you use bleach to whiten clothes?

A:

Quick Answer

While chlorine bleach has been a favorite in laundry rooms for decades, you might be unaware of how to use it properly. It's the key to the brightest whites. If your bottle of bleach is over 6 months old, discard it and buy a new one before, as the chlorine evaporates over time. Adding bleach does not significantly increase the normal time it takes to finish your laundry.

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Full Answer

  1. Test the garment

    Dilute a small amount of bleach with two parts water. Apply a small amount to an inconspicuous spot on the garment and allow to dry. If there is no color change, the garment is safe to bleach.

  2. Dilute the bleach

    Always dilute bleach before adding directly to the machine. If your washing machine has a bleach dispenser, it dilutes the bleach for you. Read the manufacturer's directions to determine the proper amount of bleach to use.

  3. Add after detergent

    Add bleach about 5 minutes into the wash cycle to allow the detergent to work without it first. Machines with dispensers add the bleach at the appropriate time.

  4. Use the hottest water safe for the load

    For best results use hot water. You decrease the effectiveness of bleach by washing in warm or cold water.

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