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Why wait? Go on the run with cleaner shoes


Washing shoes, especially those of active schoolchildren, is not a chore enjoyed by many. Scrubbing dirt and mud stains out of sneakers, canvas or cloth shoes can be a time consuming and ultimately futile effort when done by hand.

So why not let your washing machine do the work? It’d certainly save time and effort, and possibly do a better job to boot. Couple that with a dryer and you’ll have clean shoes in a jiffy.

Here’s how you can start automating the task of washing and drying your running gear.


Preparing for the wash

Check to see if if your shoes can be machine washed. Generally, shoes made of canvas or cloth can be washed using a washing machine. Leather and suede should remain handwashed.

Take any laces out of the shoes. You don’t want them to get tangled and damaged in a tumbling or spinning drum. If they need to be cleaned, put them in a mesh laundry bag before throwing them in the washer.

Brush off any loose pieces of dirt from the shoes such as mud. Then perform a quick scrub with an old toothbrush or a clean cloth and a cleaning agent like a gentle detergent.

Put the shoes into a mesh laundry bag. If one is not handy, an old, unused pillowcase can be used, or throw in some towels with the shoes. This covering prevents the shoes from scuffing or damaging the drum of the washing machine.


Use a cold wash cycle

The Electrolux Time Manager range of washing machines allow you to customise your washes down to the water temperature, wash cycles, and the time you want it to start.

Use a gentle wash cycle like the “delicate” cycle on the Electrolux EWF10751 Time Manager washing machine and opt for a cold wash programme. Shoes won’t shrink in a washing machine, but their colours might fade in a hot wash. The Time Manager range of washing machines allows for a range of wash programmes and settings, so you can customise the wash perfectly for your needs, down to the time you want the machine to start.

For washing sneakers, just use normal detergent.  A little bleach should only be used for white shoes. Adding baking soda to the wash can also help neutralise odours.


Dry right

You can choose to air dry or use a dryer for quicker results. As with the washing machine, you can dry them in a mesh laundry bag. There are also special laundry bags made for drying sneakers. Alternatively, arrange sturdier laundry like thick towels around them. This has the added bonus of muting any noise made by the dryer tossing the shoes about.

The Electrolux Iron Aid dryer comes with a drying rack that remains stationary while the machine is in operation, letting you dry shoes with a minimum of tumbling.

Some dryers like the Electrolux EDI97170W Iron Aid come with a drying rack that remains stationary while the dryer is in operation. The rack keeps items like shoes from tumbling around the drum. It also comes with a smart electronic sensor that can adapt drying times and temperatures to the load. This is useful as drying shoes at too high a temperature for too long can dry out the fabric and damage them.

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