Washing Red Clothing in Well Water?

Since I have lived in my home with well water, I have the strangest result when I wash red clothes. They come out of the washer with a dingy greyish-blue cast and darker striations on them. I have tried vinegar, salt, baking soda, water softener, and now I just give them to someone with town water, so they can do them for me. What is that all about? Other people in the neighborhood said they have the same problem, but they don't seem to be as bothered by it, it drives me nuts!



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By Jean (Guest Post)
September 13, 20040 found this helpful

Not sure if this will work since the baking soda and water softener didn't work -- but give this a try -add some borax to your wash cycle. We have terrible hard water and if I don't add borax our laundry is just awful.

Also, I had another thought -- are you adding fabric softener in the rinse cycle? If you are, try not to add it during one of the cycle with the borax and see if that helps.

Another thought, if you are washing with cold water be sure your detergent dissolves thoroughly before you add your laundry --- if necessary use warm/hot water for dissolving the detergent and then finish filling with cold.


Hope some of these ideas help!

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September 14, 20040 found this helpful

Have you tried finding out what's in your well water? There are different types of salt for the water softener that will remove things like rust, check with your hardware store for a test kit or maybe they will know, by your problem stated above, and can offer you a resolution via the softener salt.

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By pats/az (Guest Post)
September 25, 20040 found this helpful

There is a product sold in the laundry aisle called Woolite Dye Magnet. I have had good luck with this. I also live on well water and it is important for the detergent to be completely dissolved before you add the clothes.

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By Diane B (Guest Post)
June 21, 20050 found this helpful

I, too am very frustrated. I just had 6 or 7 of my tops, jackets and sweaters come out with very large spotches of dark bluish areas and this was a load of red ONLY clothing. Sort of looks like tie dye - not what I want for the office.


Good idea getting the water tested. We too have a well and it would be interesting to know what the chemical reaction that causing this to happen. I can't afford to lose any more clothing and I LOVE to wear red tops and sweaters!

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February 17, 2012

Every time I wash a red clothing item, it comes out with blue streaks or blotches. I always wash the red items completely alone. I use plain Tide. I also have well water with a lot of lime in it. I wonder, could the lime in the water be turning my reds? Please help. I just ruined my husband's favorite shirt.

By Renee S

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