"Washday Blues" was recorded on May 3, 1972, at RCA Studio B in Nashville, Tennessee. The B-side, "Just as Good as Gone", was recorded April 27, 1971, during a session for 1971's Coat of Many Colors.
"Washday Blues" was released July 10, 1972, as the first single from Dolly's tenth solo studio album, My Favorite Songwriter, Porter Wagoner.
Cashbox reviewed the single in the July 22, 1972 issue. The review said that Dolly "spreads new blue cheer with this Porter Wagoner tune that sports cute lyrics and one of the funniest C&W arrangements going." The review concluded by saying that the single was "bound to come up on top of the load."
The single debuted at number 50 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart dated August 12, 1972. It peaked at number 20 on the chart dated September 23, its seventh week on the chart. It charted for a total of nine weeks. It also peaked at number seven in Canada on the RPM Country Singles chart.