What Temperature Is Best To Wash Black Clothes At? (& how to stop them fading)

Whilst it’s important to get whites, white, it’s just as important to keep black and dark coloured clothing as close to their original colour as possible. Which is why it’s always best to wash black or dark items at low temperatures like 20 or 30 degrees C.

In this article we look at the correct ways to wash black and dark coloured clothes. Using the correct temperature when washing black and dark clothes is vitally important to preserve the fabric as well as the colour.

The main problem is colour fade which can leave your black jeans decidedly grey.

How To Reduce Blacks From Fading In The Wash

Washing Machine

There are a few things you can do to help prevent the colours from fading when washing black or dark coloured clothes. These include;

  • Always Turn Clothes Inside Out
    You should always turn clothes inside out to help prevent fading. As clothes wash in the machine they rub against each other. This abrasive action can cause the colours to run and fade. By turning the clothes inside out you can prevent this abrasive action from forcing the colours out of the fabric.
  • Use A Delicate Cycle
    The delicate cycle isn’t just for delicate items. It can be used to wash black and dark coloured clothes to preserve the fabric and help keep the colours from running.
  • Use The Correct Detergent
    You should use a detergent that is specifically designed for washing black or coloured items. Detergents made for washing whites often have bleaches added that will adversely affect any colours in your clothes.
  • Select A Low Temperature Wash
    To prevent damage or shrinking, you should always opt for the lowest water temperature possible. Washing black or dark colours at a low temperature helps to prevent the colours from bleeding and fading.
  • Always Wash Black & Dark Colours Separately
    The dyes used to colour black and dark clothes often bleed even at low temperatures. It is always best to wash black and dark colours separately to prevent the colours running into each other.

Is It Better To Wash Black & Dark Clothes In A Cold Wash?

White clothes tend to do better at slightly higher temperatures but black and dark colours do better using a cool wash. The lower temperature is better to prevent colours from bleeding or fading.

What’s The Problem With Washing Black & Dark Clothes Using Warm Water?

As with all clothes, washing black or dark clothes using water that is too hot will not only cause the clothes to shrink. It will also cause the colours to run and fade. 

One warm wash occasionally won’t necessarily do any harm, but repeated warm washes could cause the loss of colours with black clothes turning grey.

How To Tell If The Colours Will Run

If you’re worried that the colours on a garment will run, you should test it before washing it in a machine. All you need to do is fill a bowl or bucket with lukewarm water and place the garment in the water.

Agitate the water a bit and leave the garment submerged for around 30 minutes. If you notice that the water has changed to the colour of the garment, you’ll know it’s probably best to hand wash the item.

Can I Wash Black Clothes At 40 Degrees?

40 Degree Wash Cycle

Black clothes should be washed using a low temperature wash cycle to prevent them from bleeding dye which leads to colour fade. A 40 degree wash cycle is often too high for many black dyes.

We recommend washing black clothes at no higher than 30 degrees to preserve the colour.

SEE ALSO: What Temperature Is Best To Wash Clothes At?

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to wash black clothes on 40?

Washing black clothes at 40 degrees is likely to cause them to bleed and fade. It is recommended that you wash black and dark coloured clothes using a low temperature wash cycle.

Is 30 degrees good for black clothes?

A 30 degree wash cycle is recommended for washing black clothes to prevent the dye from bleeding which causes the fabric to fade.

What setting do you wash black clothes on?

Black clothes should be washed using a delicate setting at low temperatures. This will help prevent the colours from bleeding which leads to colour fade.

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