I have a 4 year old LG 2277. When do front loaders dispense the bleach? Is it during the wash cycle with the detergent or during one of the rinse cycles?
Depends on the individual machine. A few possibly toward end of the wash period ... many others do it in the first rinse. Chlorine bleach deactivates detergent enzymes, so the reasoning may be to get maximum benefit from the detergent.
On my LG, I believe it is during the rinse. I started using the extra rinse button to get the chlorine smell out of my whites.
Why on earth would a machine dispense bleach in the rinse cycle? If that's the case, your machine's behavior was not designed very well. The maximum benefit of bleach is achieved during the wash cycle, when the temperatures are higher and the water contains surfactants and other ingredients (baking soda, for instance) that may help boost the bleach's effectiveness.
My Miele W4842 dispenses bleach during the last 10 minutes of the wash cycle. I do not use liquid chlorine bleach, however, due to its extreme toxicity and damaging effects on clothing fibers. I opt for oxygen bleach instead, which is added directly with your detergent and works during the entire wash cycle.
LCB should not be dispensed during any of the rinse cycles because that defeats the purpose of the rinse cycle! :)
Chlorine bleach works in cold water, it does not need high temperatures. High temperature also promotes more-rapid dissipation of it.
I asked Electrolux this today and they responed within hours (great service):
"Thank you for contacting Electrolux Major Appliances.
Bleach is introduced into the tub during the fill of the 1st rinse cycle; however, in the fast cycle the 2nd half of wash cycle.
Again, thank you for contacting Electrolux Major Appliances.
This is really true. Our swimming pool goes through chlorine in the water like mad when it's very hot outside. Not so much on cooler days.
From a temperature perspective it makes sense to dispense bleach in cold rinse water, but from a rinsing perspective it does not. Some people like to add baking soda to boost the effectiveness of liquid chlorine bleach, so if you're one of those people you have to add the baking soda to the rinse cycle?
A little googling on my end has revealed about a 50/50 split of opinions regarding bleach and temperature. While dispensing bleach into warm or hot water may liberate some of the chlorine into a gaseous form, warm or hot water also accelerates the bleaching process. The consensus appears to be that hot wash water does not turn enough chlorine into gas to make a difference. Warm and hot water intensifies the bleaching reaction, which can have its benefits depending on the type of fabrics you are trying to bleach.