Friday, December 28, 2012

Washing Machine Overflow - User Error




We returned home today from a few days away, and I realized I had not done laundry in a very long time. My laundry room looked like a dirty clothing bomb had gone off.  So I threw a load in, poured in my homemade laundry detergent and pressed start. Now, when I poured my laundry detergent into a cup I had a thought about how much it had separated (there was clear liquid at the bottom of the bottle and gel like clumps at the top), but then I realized I had a hot load going in and figured that the hot water would dissolve all the clumps...no problem, press start.  Big problem.  Although it was a hot load, the water in the pipes was cold, which meant that the initial water to go in to the machine was cold, which in turn meant that said cold water had no where to go because the gel clumps weren't disintegrating with hot water.  I suddenly realized that water was pouring out of the soap dispenser, and down the front of the machine.  Luckily it was laundry room full of dirty towels to soak up the spill flood.  As I sopped up the water I felt silly for making the machine back up....and wondered how I was going to fix the blockage that was in fact not in the dispenser tray, but now in the machine itself.  Using a bottle brush and a hockey water bottle filled with hot water I fixed the problem. Phew. I had had thoughts of calling a repair man (cha-ching cha-ching, can't afford that right now), and having to explain that one of my frugal inventions broke the machine (embarrassment).   But instead. everything turned out just fine.  I fixed those gel clumps and told them who is boss. My hand blender has emulsified them into liquid again.  (Sorry, I didn't get any pictures of those darned clumps before blended them. I was too solution focused in the moment.)

So, if you're making your own homemade laundry detergent and it ends up separating do not use it and the clumps in your front loader without blending the clumps away.  Unless of course you like the idea of swimming in your laundryroom.  I will now be making a note about this on my laundry soap recipe page.

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