how long can i leave clothes in the washer

how long can i leave clothes in the washer

How Long Can I Leave Clothes in the Washer?

Nowadays, we are usually very busy with our daily life and trying to balance between work, home and leisure. Oftentimes, we cannot find the time to remove our clothes from the washer after the cycle is done. But how long can you keep them there?

It Depends on the Material

The answer to this question depends on the type of material the clothes are made of. Heavy fabrics such as denim and linen can handle being left in the washer for a few hours. With fabrics like these, you shouldn’t have any problems leaving the clothes to sit overnight in the machine.

However, lighter fabrics such as cotton and polyester should be removed and dried as soon as possible. Leaving these fabrics in the washer for too long can cause discoloration, shrinking, and even mold growth.

Consider the Weather

The weather outside can also influence how long you can leave your clothes in the washer. Warmer climates may cause your clothes to become damp quickly, and if you leave them in the washer too long, you could be inviting unwanted guests like mold and mildew into your machine.

On the other hand, in cooler climates, you can leave your clothes for a few extra hours or even overnight if necessary. However, you should still take precautions to avoid mold and mildew growth.

How to Avoid Mold and Mildew

Here are some tips to avoid mold and mildew growth in your washer:

  • Leave the washer door open: Leaving the washer door open helps to air out the machine after a cycle.
  • Clean washer between cycles: Make sure to clean the washer’s seal and drum after each cycle to remove excess moisture and soap residue.
  • Use cool water when washing: Warm or hot water can cause moisture to stay in the machine for longer, which can lead to mold and mildew growth.


Overall, it is important to remember that you should always remove your clothes from the washer as soon as possible. The amount of time you can leave your clothes in the washer depends on the material they are made of and the weather conditions outside. Taking steps to prevent mold and mildew growth, such as leaving the washer door open and using cool water during the wash cycle, will help to ensure your clothes stay fresh and clean.

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