Would You Remove Someone’s Clothes at a Laundromat?

This post may contain affiliate links.
Close up of washers a a laundromat

A trip to the local laundromat can be time-consuming and mind-numbingly boring.

As a result, it’s common to see customers start their laundry and disappear to find something to pass the time. However, this becomes a problem when their cycle finishes and they have yet to return.

Nobody wants to spend more time than necessary at a laundromat. So what are you to do? Do you remove someone’s clothes or wait patiently for them to return?

Let’s get to the dirty truth of this sudsy debate! 

What Is a Laundromat?

A laundromat is a self-service facility where customers can pay to wash and dry their clothes.

While many established laundromats require users to use quarters or tokens, modern facilities typically have credit card readers. These facilities are generally popular near apartments and in locations where residents may not have a washer or dryer at home.

When traveling the country, we frequently use laundromats to wash our clothes. Because many of these facilities have many machines, you can typically do several loads at once. This allows you to minimize the time to wash your clothes and bedding.

Some of these locations will offer additional services. They may provide dry cleaning or folding services. If you hate doing laundry, a laundromat is an excellent option.

RVer Asks Facebook for Laundromat Advice

Where else do you turn when figuring out how to handle a frustrating situation? Facebook, of course! 

That’s exactly what one user did when she aired her dirty laundry and frustrations with a massive full-time RVing group of more than 150,000 members. The budget-friendly therapy session attracted more than 160 comments.

The traveler posted how she should handle a fellow laundromat user not immediately removing their clothes when the cycle finished. The offender was nowhere to be found, and she was wondering if she should remove the clothes so she could start her cycle or not.

The poster quickly discovered this is a hot topic among laundromat users. Luckily, she only had to wait 25 minutes for the individual to come and retrieve their clothes. 

However, the poster stated, “I did kindly mention that she would be better served to put a timer on her phone, as to not make others wait.”

Will the poster’s lecture change the offender’s behavior? Likely not. However, just because the person who started the debate was done with the conversation doesn’t mean others were. The discussion continued long after she signed off on the post.

A person putting their clothes in a washer at a laundromat

Users Unsurprisingly Divided on How to Respond

As with most topics, you have two sides to every story. Unfortunately, like a bunch of children, many in the discussion couldn’t take the time to consider or listen to the other’s point of view.

One side said it was very rude to move someone’s clothes, and the other said it was rude to expect others to wait on you. These are the types of situations that occur when people stop considering others and giving them the benefit of the doubt. 

Both sides wanted to be right so badly that they refused to consider any other view.

While the setting for this situation was a laundromat, it happens in various settings. It could be a parking lot, grocery store line, or another location, but people tend to need more patience for others these days. 

The world would be better if we considered others more and extended grace as often as possible.

Laundromat Etiquette You Should Follow

If you’ll use laundromats soon, it’s important to know some important etiquette. This can help you to avoid finding yourself in a heated situation. Let’s take a look!

Be Considerate of Others

As with many things in life, you must be considerate of others when using a laundromat. If you need to make or receive a phone call, keep it short or step outside. Nobody wants your loud conversation to disrupt them.

You must also avoid spreading out and taking up more room than necessary. Some customers occupy a row or two of chairs with their belongings.

This leaves other customers without a place to sit and wait. If you choose to do this, you better watch your stuff closely, or it might grow legs and walk away.

Keep in Mind: Before you commit to becoming a full-time RVer, take a look at 13 of the worst things about full-time RV life!

Keep the Environment Clean

Ensure your dryer sheets, empty laundry detergent bottles, and snack wrappers find their way into the trash. You must clean up after yourself and report any spills or messes to the staff. Nobody wants to spend an hour or two in a dirty laundromat.

Additionally, if you eat food or drink, clean up after yourself. Don’t leave crumbs on tables or the ground. Do the staff and other customers a favor and maintain a clean environment. 

A full washing machine at a laundromat

Follow the Rules

The rules at laundromats typically vary from one location to the next. We’ve seen some facilities in areas with oil workers that require them to use specific machines for washing their clothes. Additionally, we’ve seen others that limit the number of washers an individual can occupy at one time.

It’s your responsibility to know and follow the rules. If you disagree with them, choose another spot to do your laundry.

If you break the rules, don’t let it surprise you if they ask you to leave in the middle of your wash cycle. Do you want to head home with a basket of sopping wet clothes?

Don’t Leave Your Clothes Unattended

As we discussed earlier, don’t leave your clothes unattended. It’s easy to lose focus and get distracted from the task at hand. The 25-minute wash cycle can go by quickly when you’re not nearby.

While we don’t recommend leaving your clothes alone, it will happen from time to time. Whether you have an Apple or Android device, you can quickly set a timer using your digital assistant.

This can help you avoid losing track of time and leaving your clothes in the machine longer than necessary. Additionally, don’t travel far if you do need to leave.

Keep in Mind: Having a way to do your laundry is essential for a long trip! If your RV doesn’t have washer hookups, consider a portable washing machine!

Avoid Overloading Machines

You may try to avoid using multiple machines by stuffing them as full as possible. Unfortunately, this increases the wear on the washers. Just because it’s not yours doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still take care of it.

If you can’t find it in yourself to respect the washer and dryers, consider the financial implications of overloading them. By stuffing them full, you’ll reduce the effectiveness of the machine.

Your clothes likely won’t get as clean and may take much longer to dry. You could end up wasting money by overloading the appliances.

Image of clothing in a laundry basket at a laundromat

Avoid Being Rude at the Laundromat

The laundromat can be a busy and sometimes stressful place, especially during peak hours. However, you’ll likely have a pleasant experience if you’re considerate and respectful of others.

But if you’re the type that’s rude or disrespectful, don’t be offended when someone calls out your behavior. Some people have more patience than others, and you never know how they’ll respond. 

What do you think? Is it acceptable to remove someone’s clothes at a laundromat?

  1. I believe it’s acceptable if the facility is full and you’ve waited a decent interval – at least 20 minutes before – and you’re respectful of other peoples property. I’ve done it once myself. I don’t know their reaction because they were gone so long my own clothes were dry and folded before they returned. And once an attendant emptied the dryer into a basket at my request. Once at my apartment complex I even had it done to me when I got distracted and forgot. Like you said, it all comes down to respect.

  2. I did do this once…because it had been a full hour which to me is ridiculous. But I carefully removed the clothing from the dryer and left it neatly folded on the table.

  3. I normally have a lot of patience but leaving your clothes in the machines is a huge pet peeve of mine. Set your alarm and empty the machine! I hate doing laundry to begin with but having to wait 20 minutes for an empty washer or dryer is really rude!
    I’ve never emptied someone else’s washer or dryer but I sure have been tempted!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous Article
A picnic basket on a blanket for national picnic day

Celebrate National Picnic Day in Your RV

Next Article
View of Loveland Castle

Is Loveland Castle a Real Castle?