Seriously, in these times when househelps are so difficult to find and although washing machines are affordable but you don’t have the time and water is scarce;  this do it yourself laundry is very helpful to family like us. I am very sure that this is also friendly and convenient to students, transients and busy working people.
I remember, my mom used to tell me, in those days, women gather in the river banks and wash their clothes there while listening to the radio or catching up with their daily lives or even sharing “tsismis” or gossip. These days, we all go to the self-service laundry.

One Big Wash, our laundry shop nearby.
Located at Barlin Street in Naga City
That’s Gaby. I’m teaching her how to do the laundry

Together with my 15-year old daughter Gabby, being first times in the self-service laundry, we tried and are compelled to do the laundry by ourselves because of the rainy weather and the absence of a househelp.

Going to the do- it- yourself laundry  is like going to a digital unknown. There’s this techophobia or mechanophobia that bothers me everytime I encounter a different type of machine which is totally unfamiliar to me. Well, for many years now, I’ve seen coin laundry on movies and TV shows – but this time, it’s available in Naga City. I can say that my first experience is practical and  efficient.

So, for  first timers like me, here’s how you do it.

TIP #1 PREPARE

Prepare your laundry a night before. Put everything in an eco-bag or whatever laundry bag you prefer. So the next day, all you have to do is just to pick it up and go.

TIP #2 BE EARLY

If you’re going on a weekend laundry, be sure to be there early than anyone else. In our case, we went around 7am – the weather was pretty stormy, there a deluge of crowd with laundry baskets. Be there as early as 6am and they’re already open. Ours is One Big Wash located in Barlin Street, Naga City. it’s around 15-minute walk from home, recommended by a friend and near our place. This place is practical for us.

 
TIP#3 READ

There are instructional signs posted on the walls of the laundry shop, so you would know how to do your laundry.

TIP #4 ASK QUESTIONS OR ASSISTANCE 

If you’re unsure of what you’re going to do like where to put your detergent soap, bleach and your fabric conditioner, you may ask help from the laundry shop. They are willing to help. and hey, those are big machines with blinking buttons.

TIP #5 DETERGENT! POWDER OR LIQUID  

This is where you put the detergent liquid and the
 fabric conditioner before you press start.

 This is located at the left side of the washing machine.

Both are allowed as I’ve seen some use detergent powder too. If you forgot to bring one, you may purchase it at the laundry shop counter.

Usually for one tub, I use two sachets of liquid detergent and fabcon. Too much I guess is bad. As always, depends on how heavy your clothes are. For sure, towels and  linens and bed sheets, need more. 

TIP #6  HOW MUCH

Usually with this kind of washing machines, it could accommodate around 8 kilos per tub. Washing is priced at P65.00 per machine and not per kilo. While drying is P60.00  for 40 minutes (totally dry clothes! all you need to do right after drying is to fold).

Tips on removing stains
The washing machine is usually located
 at the bottom,
the dryer is always located on top of it.

If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to opt for  washing only and let the clothes dry at your home.

But if you’re in a hurry and there’s no chance that the sun will show up, then try the dryer.

You may also decide to get two tubs, one for colored clothes and the other for white clothes, it all depends on you. Based on my experience, since most of our clothes don’t really bleed, one tub is enough. I do not include my hand-washed only clothes label.

I’ve seen some do the washing in two tubs and then they do their drying in only one. I guess dryer has a bigger tub the way I look at it.

Here’s the self-service laundry rates

TIP #7 WAITING TIME

Parents usually bring their kids.

Based on my own experience, if you will arrive there early and there’s no queue, washing is 30 minutes and drying is 40 minutes, that’s approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes, plus the folding of around 15 minutes, you’ll spend around an hour to two hours depending on the bulk of your laundry.

There’s usually a table available for you to fold the dry clothes.  

TIP #8  BRING A BOOK

Although there’s television, I opted to read a book instead. ou may also listen to music, send text messages or do your work while waiting for your laundry. Sometimes, when I look at the tub while it’s washing, rinsing and drying the clothes, I feel like I’m in meditation. Well, this is also the best time to reflect and pray.

Reading while waiting

After a couple of hours you’ll go home with fresh and clean clothes!
 

I hope you find these tips useful. We might bump on each other on my next laundry session.

Reminders :
1. If you have stains on your clothes, you might want to scrub the stained area with washing detergent,it’s easier to remove the stain when you throw it in the washing machine.

2. They don’t accept wet clothes. So, don’t bring your wet clothes in the laundry shop. Better to hang it dry first before you bring them to the laundry.

3. Please roll down the sleeves of your  shirts and also your socks for better washing and drying.