Don’t add soap to your washer because there’s enough in your clothes

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When my new front-load washer arrives this week, my high-efficiency detergents won’t see any action for at least another week. Why?

I’m going to wash all my clothes using the soap they already contain.

That’s right. Clothes washed in top-load washers (like mine) generally contain enough soap residue in their fibers that will suds and finally rinse properly once washed in front-loader washers.

To wash, top-load washers completely fill their tub with water and push clothes around in the soapy water by the agitator (that tall thing with paddles in the middle). This would be like washing your hands by filling a sink with soapy water and swishing your hands around in it. Plus, older, top loading washers simply don’t rinse as well and your clothes end up accumulating a decent amount of soap residue.

Don’t believe me? Examine your dark clothes. Do they look gray or faded? That’s soap.

Disgusting, huh? Now imagine how irritating all that soap is to your skin, too.

(Front-loading washers use far less water, only enough to get the clothes wet, which means they use less soap as well. Make sure you don’t use too much soap or your washer could “oversuds,” producing too much soap bubbles, which might not completely rinse out of your clothes, as a front loader washer is, again, designed to use minimal water. Saying that, they’ll also rinse your clothes much better than a top load washing machine.)

So, I’m going to wash out all the soap left over in my clothes from my old washer using nothing but tumble action and water from a front loader washer.

 

 

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2 Responses to “Don’t add soap to your washer because there’s enough in your clothes”

  1. Mary Cracraft Says:

    Yep and although many people now have a recycle thing so their wash water doesn’t go into the laundry tub, when wash water DOES go into a laundry tub, you can see exactly how much people overuse soap–there is always a ton of soap left in the final rinse water. I use my rinse water in the laundry tub to gauge whether I’m using the right amount of soap in the washer! If there’s a soap ring left when the load’s done, I’ve used too much soap.

    • Julie Warner Says:

      That’s a good tip, Mary, I’ve never thought of that. I’m going to watch my laundry tub on this washer tonight before it goes to appliance heaven.

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