At What Temperatures Should You Wash Your Laundry?

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Modern washing machines are equipped with a myriad of program settings, but many consumers remain confused about the temperatures that should be used for their clothing. In most cases the hotter the water, the greater the cleaning potential, but this may not be appropriate for all your clothing and could cause damage. So, here we will explore the temperatures you should be using for your laundry.

USING HOT WATER

Most white clothing and linens can be washed in hot water. This will remove heavy soil and germs. Unfortunately, hot water can cause shrinkage, wrinkling, and fading of colors. If you try to wash your clothing in hot water, the colors may start to look splotchy, while delicate fabrics can lose their aesthetic appeal.

USING WARM WATER

The majority of laundry can be washed using warm water. This mixture of hot and cold water provides a balance between color protection and removing soil. Some washing machines use a 50-50 ratio of hot and cold water, but newer models tend to mix 60-40. Warm water can usually be used without shrinking, wrinkling or fading.

USING COLD WATER

Cold water is preferable for delicate items or bright colors that could fade or run at a higher temperature. If your items require cold water temperatures, but are dirty or heavily soiled, you will need to have a diligent pretreatment routine. You may need to pre-soak your items or wash them for longer to ensure that they are properly cleaned.

CHOOSING THE CORRECT WASHING TEMPERATURE

Since there is the potential for laundry mishaps, by washing at the wrong temperature, it is important to choose the correct washing temperature. Fortunately, there are several ways to determine the correct temperature. The most obvious is to check the clothing tag. The tag will provide any laundry or care special instructions. Most clothing will be labeled with the maximum wash temperature, so check your tags before you do any laundry.

You should also pre-treat any stains. This will allow clothing to be cleaned even if you are washing in warm or cold water. Cold water is not the most effective way to remove stains, but pre-treatment can offer the only solution for delicate fabrics that have become stained. You may need to be patient, as some pre-treatment takes time, but it is important to try to remove any stains before washing to ensure that they are as clean as possible.

If you are unsure about the washing temperature, you may want to try soaking your clothes in cold water before washing. Soaking can vary from five or ten minutes to overnight, but the tougher the stain, the longer you will need to soak the item. Soaking can help create a thorough clean even if you can only risk using a cold water cycle on your washing machine.

CHECKING YOUR WASHING MACHINE WATER TEMPERATURE

If you are still running into laundry issues, you may find that the water temperature of your washing machine is not accurate. In this type of scenario, a candy thermometer can be a useful tool. Check the temperatures of the hot, warm and cold water coming out of the machine. Hot water is typically 10 degrees colder when it arrives at your washing machine compared to leaving your water heater. Generally, hot water is 130ºf or above, while warm water is between 100ºf and 90ºf. Cold water is between 80ºf and 60ºf. If your water temperature drops below 60ºf, your clothes are not likely to be properly cleaned. If your washing machine is not delivering the correct temperature of water, your machine may need servicing or be ready for an upgrade.

FINDING THE RIGHT WASHING MACHINE

Now that you know about the ideal washing temperatures for your laundry, you have the basic knowledge you need to choose the right washing machine. If you’re ready to find the perfect washing machine for your home, consider starting your search with this collection of washing machines or contact a home appliance expert for specialized

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Survival Tips for a Kitchen Remodel

A kitchen remodel can be an exciting prospect, but unfortunately, it is not all about choosing shiny new appliances. The reality is that you may have to live in chaos for weeks or even months as your kitchen is out of action. Fortunately, there are some survival tips to help you get through the process.

TRIAGE YOUR KITCHEN

If you like to have your front load washer and dryer side-by-side, but want easier access to your appliances, then you may As you are packing up your kitchen for the remodel, you should sort all your gear into categories. You will need to place your items in boxes marked up for storage, recycling or donation and a temporary kitchen. The boxes for storage should contain items that you will need in your new kitchen, but won’t be used until later. These should be kept in a safe place, but out of the immediate area. Your recycle or donate boxes can be disposed of at your convenience, and your temporary kitchen boxes will be needed for the next tip.

CREATE A TEMPORARY KITCHEN

Even if your kitchen is only out of action for a week, you will need somewhere to make meals, prepare drinks and pack lunches. This temporary kitchen should be out of the way of any renovations, but in a convenient location. You can set up your kettle, microwave and toaster oven in a dining room or a corner of your living room and have your essentials close by. To avoid dust getting on your dishes and utensils, pack them in plastic tubs, so they are protected but easily accessible.

DEVELOP A DISHWASHING STRATEGY

Unless you plan on eating out three times a day, you will still need clean dishes during your kitchen remodel. So, you will need a dishwashing strategy. You won’t want to visit an upstairs bathroom to dump out coffee cups or rinse vegetables. So, designate a sink for kitchen use, so you don’t need to move dishes every time you want to take a bath. This sink can be set up with a dish rack and allow you to keep your detergent on hand. While it will lack the convenience of having your kitchen sink, it should make the chaos of the remodel a little easier to deal with.

TRY TO CONTROL THE DUST

It is inevitable that any home improvements will create dust, a lot of dust, and during a kitchen remodel this can cause problems throughout your home. Your contractor should have plastic sheeting to cover flooring and create a curtain around the project site. This will keep some of the dust under control, but you will need to have plenty of microfiber cloths on hand to pick up drywall dust. Clear anything on the route between your kitchen and outdoors, to avoid workers bumping into items when they are carrying tools or appliances. Be prepared to clean up at least once a day to minimize dust in other areas of your home.

ESTABLISH A PET PLAN

If you have pets, you will need to set up a safe area where they can have access to food and water, yet be out of the way of contractors. You should also set up a place to sleep. This will provide a secure place for your pet to retreat if they start to feel anxious

BE REALISTIC ABOUT YOUR FOOD STANDARDS

The reality of not having a working kitchen is that you will not be able to prepare the meals, snacks, and drinks that may be everyday staples in your home. It is unlikely that you will be able to brew fresh coffee every morning and make a three course dinner. Be prepared to make some compromises. Sandwiches, toast, salads, cereal, and fruit are all easy to prepare, and nourishing. Ice cream on a stick will keep the kids happy, yet doesn’t dirty a bowl. Plan your menu according to your means, not your usual habits.

FINDING THE RIGHT APPLIANCE FOR YOUR NEW KITCHEN

A kitchen remodel isn’t complete without the latest model appliances and if you’re ready to find the ideal appliances for your new kitchen, consider starting your search with this collection of kitchen appliances to explore your choices, or contact a home appliance expert for specialized service.

Pros & Cons Of Stacked Washer & Dryer Combo

stacked washer dryer pros cons featured

Pros & Cons Of Stacked Washer & Dryer Combo

No modern home is complete without its own set of laundry appliances. A washer and dryer helps you clean and prepare clothing, bedding, towels and more for everyday use, and a stacked washer and dryer combo is a great choice for many spaces.

These combination units, also known as laundry centers, feature a dryer stacked on top of a washer, providing a unique alternative to traditional side-by-side laundry combos found in many homes. But is a stacked washer/dryer combo the right choice for you? To help inform your decision, we’ve compiled information on the pros and cons of stacked washer/dryer combination units.

Pros Of A Stacked Washer & Dryer Combo

The biggest advantage of a stacked washer/dryer combination is its ability to help save space in your laundry room. By orienting your laundry units vertically as opposed to horizontally, you free up floor space for other appliances and tools like an ironing board, laundry baskets, clothing racks and more. The stacked design makes these units particularly good for tight laundry rooms or small homes and apartments, as they’re designed specifically to maximize space where room is limited.

Another plus to these appliances is their relative cost. The cost of a stacked washer/dryer combo tends to be less than the cumulative cost of an individual washer and dryer, making them a great choice for budget-conscious homeowners. Moreover, these units come in both gas-powered and electric-powered models, allowing you to choose the right appliance depending on your needs.

Cons Of A Stacked Washer & Dryer Combo

Washer/dryer combos are great for many spaces, though they do come with some disadvantages. The space-saving design of these units can be both a blessing and a curse, as it typically incorporates a compact washer and dryer. This means the capacity of each unit is limited, forcing you to complete smaller loads of laundry and adding time to your overall laundry process.

It’s also important to note that most stacked washer/dryer units are fairly simple appliances. These models typically offer only the basic washing and drying functions you need, and will not provide the advanced settings found in more premium standalone units. This may or may not be a problem depending on your specific laundry requirements. That said, there are combination units with more advanced features, but those features will come at an additional cost.

Superior Stacked Washer & Dryer Combos For The Modern Home

Every type of home requires effective laundry appliances, and a stacked washer/dryer is sure to meet the needs of many spaces. Even though these models tend to offer less features than their standalone counterparts, their compact, space-saving designs and budget-friendly costs makes them a great choice for many homeowners. With a variety of sizes and styles available, there’s little doubt that you’ll find the ideal washer/dryer combo appliance for your home.

Ready to find your own washer/dryer combo unit? Explore your options using this online collection of laundry appliances, and contact a home appliance expert for additional assistance.

Best Side-By-Side Refrigerators of 2017 Based on Consumer Reports

best side by side refrigerator 2017

Best Side-By-Side Refrigerators of 2017 Based on Consumer Reports

The refrigerators of the past were bulky and unattractive appliances designed almost exclusively for fresh food storage. But today’s refrigerators are modern marvels of design and technology, able to combine fresh and frozen food compartments in a single appliance. If style and storage space are your appliance priorities, you may want to invest in a side-by-side refrigerator.

Side-by-side refrigerators are divided into two separate parts, with one side of the unit serving as the refrigerator compartment and the other as the freezer. Compared to other models, this design is able to maximize storage capacity while offering a stylish look that matches the contemporary aesthetic of many homes. Many of these units are luxury refrigerators, offering truly unbeatable storage features to your kitchen. To help you discover the perfect side-by-side unit for your home, we’ve compiled information on the best side-by-side refrigerators of 2017 based on Consumer Reports.

GE Profile PSS28KSHSS

For over 100 years, American consumers have trusted GE to manufacture reliable home products and appliances, and the GE Profile PSS28KSHSS side-by-side refrigerator lives up to the brand’s storied tradition of quality.

This GE refrigerator boasts 17.5 cubic feet of refrigerator capacity and 10.9 cubic feet of freezer capacity, providing more space than many of its top competitors. The unit offers excellent temperature performance, and its digital controls allow you to effortlessly set the temperature of the refrigerator or freezer. GE’s integrated shelf system maximizes organizational possibilities within the unit, with powerful crisper drawers that help keep fruits and vegetables fresh. This unit also offers excellent energy efficiency, cutting costs on your home’s utility bills.

Click here for more information on this GE refrigerator.

Samsung RS25H5121SR

Samsung brings impressive technological advancements to all of its home electronics and appliances, a fact perfectly exemplified by the Samsung RS25H5121SR side-by-side refrigerator.

This Samsung refrigerator offers a powerful Twin Cooling Plus® System able to consistently maintain the low temperatures required for both the refrigerator and freezer. With 15.4 cubic feet of refrigerator capacity and 9.1 feet of freezer capacity, you can rest assured you’ll have plenty of space for all your fresh and frozen items. For added convenience, this unit has an external water dispenser on its freezer side, with a built-in water filter that purifies your drinking water. Moreover, the appliance is ENERGY STAR® certified, promoting eco-friendliness throughout your home.

For more details on this Samsung refrigerator, click here.

Samsung RS25J500DSR

There is no shortage of exceptional Samsung refrigerators on the market today, and the Samsung RS25J500DSR is also one of the best side-by-side refrigerators of 2017.

Like nearly all of Samsung’s refrigerators, the RS25J500DSR model offers excellent temperature performance and uniformity, as well as digital controls that help you adjust settings for the freezer and refrigerator. This unit’s 15.72 cubic feet of refrigerator space provide ample space for fresh food and drinks, while its 8.8 cubic feet of freezer space affords ample storage for pre-prepared meals, frozen desserts, and ice. The Samsung RS25J500DSR unit is less expensive than the slightly superior Samsung RS25H121SR, making it a great option for budget-conscious consumers.

Click here to learn more about this impressive refrigerator.

LG LSXS26366S

LG’s entire brand identity is based on the notion that “Life’s Good,” and the LG LSXS26366S side-by-side refrigerator is sure to bring convenience to your kitchen.

One of the biggest advantages of this LG unit is its powerful ice making features. The LG LSX26366S can produce up to two pounds of ice per day, and features a SpacePlus™ Ice System that conveniently stores ice for maximum freezer space. This LG refrigerator has 9.20 cubic feet of freezer capacity and 16.9 cubic feet of refrigerator capacity, giving your kitchen the dedicated storage space required for a variety of common food items. The refrigerator is built with LG’s LoDecibel™ Quiet Operation technology, reducing the volume of its refrigerator and freezer cycles. If you’re looking for a spacious and advanced refrigerator, the LG LSXS26366S unit is a great choice.

Are you interested in this LG appliance? Click here for further information.

Superior Side-By-Side Refrigerators For Today’s Homeowners

A side-by-side refrigerator is an ideal choice for the modern home, marrying the advantages of a refrigerator and a freezer in an appealing, contemporary design. With knowledge of the best side-by-side refrigerators of 2017, you’ll be prepared to find the perfect new addition to your kitchen.

For a wide selection of superior units from premium brands, be sure to visit this online collection of side-by-side refrigerators.

The “Universal” Dishwasher Buying Guide: What To Look For In A Dishwasher

The "Universal" Dishwasher Buying Guide: What To Look For In A Dishwasher

Today’s kitchens are modern and advanced spaces that help you craft creative, home-cooked dishes with ease. But after every culinary execution it’s time for the less fun task of clean up. This is where the modern dishwasher does its job.

The contemporary home requires an effective dishwasher to keep plates, glasses, utensils, and more, ready for repeated use. There is no shortage of premium dishwashers available today, and discovering the right choice for your home can be a challenge. With that in mind, the experts at Universal Appliance and Kitchen Center have crafted this helpful dishwasher-buying guide to ensure you have the information you need before investing in a new dishwasher.

Types Of Dishwashers

Before beginning your dishwasher search, it’s important to understand the different types of dishwashers. There are a host of dishwasher designs available for the modern home, and naturally you’ll want to find the proper design for you home.

For an integrated feel that exudes modern style, consider a built-in dishwasher. Built-in dishwashers are installed flush to your kitchen cabinetry, offering a seamless and space-saving feel that often boasts a combination of traditional and advanced wash functions. Built-in dishwashers are a traditional design, but today’s offerings feature exceptionally stylish exteriors for truly elevated designs.

The "Universal" Dishwasher Buying Guide: What To Look For In A Dishwasher

Dishwasher drawers offer the same functionality you’d find in a traditional built-in dishwasher with a unique design. These washers also take advantage of built-in installation, but feature a sliding drawer compartment as opposed to an outward opening door. These units are smaller than their traditional counterparts, but still offer powerful cleaning functions in sleek designs.

If you’re unable to install a built-in unit, you may want to invest in a portable dishwasher. These units are freestanding dishwashers that typically attach to your sink through a hose to draw water for the wash cycle. Portable dishwashers are often compact, and many feature built-in rollers for easy movement. For an even more versatile design, you can invest in a countertop dishwasher.

Consider Dishwasher Noise Level

The dishwashers of the past were noisy appliances that frequently intruded on daily life. Modern sound proofing innovations allow most of today’s dishwashers to operate at significantly lower dB levels, but you still need to make sure you choose a quiet appliance.

Low-end dishwashers typically have sound ratings around 50 to 55 dBs. This range in noise level is barely noticeable from another room, but if you’re near the dishwasher you’ll definitely hear it operating. If your dishwasher is installed near a gathering place in your home, its operation could intrude on conversations or relaxation.

Mid-range dishwashers often feature sound ratings in the 40s. You’ll notice these dishwashers while in use, but they can be easily talked over. If quiet appliance operation is your top concern, you’ll want a high-end dishwasher with sound between upper-30s to lower-40s dBs. These levels will barely be heard, even if you’re right next to the appliance, providing added luxury to your kitchen space.

Dishwasher Tub Types

Most dishwashers either feature plastic tubs or stainless steel tubs, providing the interior storage space for all your dishes, utensils, and cookware. While the tub material will not impact cleaning performance, it will make a difference when it comes to durability.

Lower-end dishwashers typically feature plastic tubs, while high-end models offer stainless steel tubs. As you would expect, stainless steel tubs are more durable than their plastic counterparts, while also offering more energy efficiency. Be sure to weigh your options between plastic and stainless steel before choosing your next dishwasher.

Dishwasher Energy Efficiency

Energy efficient dishwashers are ideal for the modern homeowner, providing an eco-friendly appliance that also lowers your power bills.

To ensure efficiency, you should research ENERGY STAR certified dishwashers. These washers are certified by the Environmental Protection Agency for their energy efficiency. That said, ENERGY STAR dishwashers still offer various degrees of efficiency. You can find a dishwasher’s estimated energy use and cost per year on the yellow energy guide paperwork attached to its exterior. Be sure to consult with an appliance professional for more information.

Smart & Powerful Dishwashers For The Contemporary Home

The "Universal" Dishwasher Buying Guide: What To Look For In A Dishwasher

Today’s dishwashers provide an array of powerful features and smart technology that automatically adjust to your every need. Finding the ideal unit for your home can be a challenge, but with careful research and consideration you’re bound to find the perfect choice. The right dishwasher will bring exceptional cleaning power to your kitchen, providing a superior level of convenience and comfort.

For a host of creative choices, browse this online collection of premium dishwashers.

Terrific Commander’s Palace Souffle’ Recipe from Jenn-Air

Commander’s Palace in New Orleans opened in 1880. It soon became a New Orleans institution and then an American one.

In almost a century and a half, the generations of staff at Commander’s have developed, honed, and perfected many recipes. Want the best Bloody Mary in America? Go to Commander’s where you can enjoy that beverage in their gracious restaurant setting.

 

Bread Pudding Dessert

After your meal, surely you must sample the best of their desserts, this magnificent bread pudding. Actually, you don’t have to go to New Orleans. You can make this opulent treat right at home.

The preparation requires a double-dip in your oven: first baking a bread pudding, then combining it with meringue for a second quick but definitive round of heat.

But what kind of heat? The perfect meringues you see were baked in our Jenn-Air® Steam and Convection Oven. For this dessert, you don’t want the steam feature for the meringue, but you do want that convection heat, driven by a powerful fan system, generating a grand meringue finale. A Parisian pastry chef could do no better. The combination of this recipe and the Jenn-Air® oven, with its powerful flow of uniform heat, is deliciously formidable.

Grand Meringue

The recipe title and the recipe shown below mention a whiskey sauce. This dessert is rich enough that you can skip the sauce which is quite whiskey intense. A trait of New Orleans, I suppose. You can reduce the amount of whiskey called for in the recipe or substitute, say, a crème anglaise.

You will never think of bread pudding as “merely” bread pudding again.

Maintain Your Refrigerator in the Summer

The kids are home from school. It’s hot outside, and they’re in and out of the refrigerator all day long. Why? The refrigerator has the same contents now that it did fifteen minutes ago. Then they keep the door open while they stare inside. What are they doing – taking inventory? When they finally close the door, teenagers seem to think they need to be especially forceful in slamming appliance doors shut.

What does this mean for your refrigerator?

It all adds up to more energy usage, more wear and tear, and shorter refrigerator life.

What can you do?

Here are some tips to maintaining your refrigerator in the summer:

  1. If your refrigerator has coils that need cleaning, be sure to keep them clean by brushing the dust off the coils. You may need a special brush to reach the coils. If so, visit your local appliance parts company, or order online from the refrigerator manufacturer.

  2. Many refrigerators have a vacation mode. Engage the vacation mode before your leave on vacation. Don’t forget to go back to normal operation when you return.

  3. If you are going on a long vacation, consider saving up empty gallon or half gallon containers. Fill them with water and put them in the refrigerator before leaving. When the containers get cool they’ll help keep the refrigerator cool and it will not need to work as hard.

  4. Turn off your ice maker while you are on vacation.

Remember, when it’s time to replace your refrigerator call or visit the experts at Universal Appliance and Kitchen Center.