What do the symbols on your washing machine actually mean?

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What do the symbols on the washing machine indicate? Here is an overview to know their meanings

Knowing what the various symbols on your washing machine actually mean will help you to avoid potential pitfalls when washing your clothes.

Washing machine symbols: detergent and fabric softener

 You’ll find these symbols in the detergent and fabric softener drawers on your appliance. Some machines have a special section for pre-washes (the line looks like a capital “I”), which you can use to add stain removers or an extra dose of detergent. You should put your liquid or powder detergent in the drawer with the double line (“II”)

The flower symbol is for fabric softener. You will often find “MAX” written in this particular compartment, which indicates the maximum dose

What do the symbols on the front of your washing machine mean?

You’ll find washing programme symbols on the front of both digital and non-digital appliances, and they tend to differ depending on the brand and model. Here are a few symbols relating to the “classic” cycles that will help you wash your clothes effectively:

 A ball of cotton, for cotton garments

  A container, for mixed and synthetic garments made of polyamide and polyester

 A ball of wool, for woollen garments

  A butterfly, for silk and delicate garments

 Two leaves, for eco-washes. If combined with a 20°C symbol, it indicates a low temperature wash, but if combined with “minutes,” it indicates an efficient and energy saving wash for smaller loads

 A container and a T-shirt, for mixed and coloured garments

 A snowflake, for a cold wash

 A bowl with a hand, for a handwash

 A key, for the child lock

 An iron for the easy-ironing programme

 A basin with a jet of water for the rinse cycle

 Steam for the appropriate steam cycle

 A basin with a downward arrow for the drain cycle

 The word “pre” for pre-wash

You’ll also find symbols for special garments:

 The duvet programme (max-capacity)

 The Baby 60° programme

 The jeans programme

You will also find specific programmes on Hoover washing machines and H-WASH 500 models, such as:

All in one (from 59 minutes at 40°), a fast programme designed to wash clothes made from different materials and colours (except delicates) at full load capacity

 Kg mode, detects the weight and type of load and automatically adapts the wash settings.

Care 14-30-44’ (a 14, 30 or 44-minute cycle at 30°), a quick, effective and eco-friendly wash

Allergy care (79 minutes at 60°) provides a thorough, antibacterial wash to rid your clothes of allergens

Fresh care (from 39 minutes at 30°), indicated with a T-shirt symbol and a puff of air, uses steam to cool and freshen up garments

Soft care (from 59 minutes at 20°), ideal for delicate and silk garments

Fitness (from 29 minutes at 40°), for sportswear and synthetic fibres

 Auto Care offers greater flexibility to satisfy various needs and load types

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