I’m An EcoFriendly Hand Washing Machine (or Have You Seen My Pipes)
About a week ago we got a new Laundry Pod. I was very skeptic about the idea of a pod that could do most of my hand washing and how clean everything would turn out. But as I have mentioned before, I REALLY dislike hand washing clothes, and am horrible at it, getting calluses and blisters every time I try. Yes I must be doing it wrong, but I never cared to learn how to do it properly since it’s a horrible task. Instead we were just paying someone in town to do it for us. However, since we are planning on heading down island and prices for commodities such as someone else to do your laundry goes up drastically, I figured I should give hand washing another go. But not on my own. And this way I am exchanging my calluses for bigger pipes!
The Laundry Pod looks like a giant salad spinner, the ones you put your wet lettuce in and swirl out all the water. Well I find it works wonders. I am so stoked with it that I have done three loads of laundry over the past two days and am gearing up to do another one or two today. The pod fits about 10 articles of clothes at a time, of course that changes wether you are washing little tiny baby undies or large dirty man shorts, but you get the idea of how much the machine can handle. You fill half way with water, use a tiny amount of detergent, let soak for a few minutes, and then get to spinning. I learned the hard, and funny, way that when they say to add only 1/5 of the detergent you would normally use they were serious. I added a bit too much and had suds coming out the top and it took me forever to rinse them out of the clothes. The next batch went better. Once you have spun for about a minute or two, giving you quite the bicep workout, you empty the water and refill with rinse water, and repeat.
Since we have some very dirty clothes on our boat, with two children that manage to spill every meal on to themselves, and a husband that has T-shirts embedded with dirt and boat grime, I have come up with our own little system to help the cleaning. I let the clothes soak for an hour or so in the pod’s soapy water before starting and will use stain remover on some of our daughters clothes prior to washing. I wash (spin), stop, remove lid and rotate clothes around in the spinner bucket, and then give it another good spin. I do the same for the rinse cycle, rotating the clothes a couple of times to make sure everything gets a good wash and rinse.
The best part I have found about this Pod is that I no longer have to wring out wet clothes. The spinning does a good enough job at removing water, of course it is nothing like a electric washer, but it is enough that the tropical sun can dry the clothes in about an hour or two. To do this you have to get a good speed of spinning, but like the manual says, “It may be hard, but who ever said that helping the planet would be easy”. Also the laundry pods mechanism was made to do four rotations for every one rotation of the handle that you do.
The faults of the machine, even though it only takes about 3 Gallons of water, to a trained “live aboard” brain which has been programmed to conserve on boat water it is a little painful to watch the water as you fill the Pod, twice, for the wash and rinse, but as I said this is a “boat brain” fault, not the pod’s. The only actual machine fault I found was when I was spinning I noticed some silver dust forming around the spinner handle, from the friction of the handle itself and the metal post it is held on with. I mean, I do have some pretty huge biceps, so maybe I was just spinning way too strong and fast, but I sort of doubt it. However, my husband said he doubts that I would grind my way through the metal anytime soon and with a little silicone lube sprayed in the metal bits the problem was solved. I fear the day it may break, since it is a mechanical spinner and a pod made of plastic, but hopefully that day is a far ways off because my hands are thanking this thing for doing all the dirty work.
All in all its a very helpful sidekick and I get to take the credit of hand washing our clothes. Once I work my way through our preexisting huge pile of laundry and then get on a system of doing it every couple of days it will be a breeze keeping up with our loads.
Arias likes to be in the most blog pics possible, so when I break out the camera there she is hugging the main object