How Can I Avoid Taking 20 Minutes to Make Wudu?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: It takes me about 15-20 minutes to do wudu. This is a problem because it affects me praying on time and it is a problem when traveling. Could you please advise me on how I could change this habit and do wudu with ease and a lot quicker.

Some of the things I am unsure about are:

1. When washing the face
– does the face need to be washed till the ear lobe or including the ear lobe?
– does the part just below the chin need to be wet as well? or only the area on the face?
– is it ok to close the eyes when washing the face? I’ve been told the eye wells need to be wet as well, but can someone assume it’s wet when a handful of water is used to wet the face including eyes? do the eyes need to be gently rubbed to make sure the eye lashes are properly wet? how about the inner side of the lashes, do they need to be wet too?
– another problem is sometimes a hair gets in the way and i would move that hair and rub the area to make sure it’s wet? do i need to do this? or could i assume here the area under the hair strand/s is wet?
– also when washing till the hairline, i have doubts as above since hair gets in way and end up rubbing more than once.

2. When wiping the head is it sufficient to wipe 1/3 of the head, without wiping in the reverse (wipe towards forehead)?

3. Khilaal of the feet
– is it sufficient to wash the feet without having the water run in between the toes, then wiping in between the toes in the end? when wiping between the toes get doubts that its not thoroughly wet so run water, is this too much?

4. After washing a limb, get doubts that a certain area has been missed out or can’t remember, end up washing again (or even third time etc), thinking better to wash again than to miss part out. Is this shaitan whispering?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

The ablution (wudu) is very straight-forward. Don’t make life difficult for yourself.

[1] The command is to wash your face. The face is considered to be from ear lobe to ear lobe, and from the top of the forehead to the bottom of the chin. Water flows. Put a handful of water on your face, and it will flow down. Rub the entire area, and this considered one washing. Hairs on the face don’t prevent water reaching. Ignore misgivings.

[2] It is a confirmed sunna to wipe the entire head once.

[3] When washing under the tap, simply use your finger to wipe between the toes once. This is sufficient. Ignore misgivings. It is unreasonable to think that water didn’t reach the area.

[4] Do not wash anything again. Doubts are from the devil, and it is not from piety to listen to, and then act on them. Ignore them completely. Learn the sunnas soundly, and then act on them. And ask Allah for success.

I’d advise taking the following class: Absolute Essentials of Islam: Beliefs & Worship (STEP)

And Allah alone gives success.