Peroxide in washing machine?

beanwabrJune 8, 2009

I remember reading something a while back about using peroxide rather than Clorox in the wash to whiten your white clothing...that its safer than bleach as well as cheaper...just use in the bleach dispenser as you normally would have done with bleach. Anyone heard of this, or do this?

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I've heard of this. I don't think it would be a problem as long as it's WHITES only. I've heard that peroxide also kills mildew. There is even a recipe for daily shower cleaner I found on the web. Mix 1 part rubbing alcohol to 1 part peroxide, a couple of drops of plain dish liquid and a teaspoon of jet dry or rinse aid and a drop of essential oil for scent if you wish.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 3:48PM
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Several of the "green" liquid oxygen bleaches are mainly hydrogen peroxide. Not sure of the % strength and if they are any weaker or stronger than the inexpensive brown bottles you can get at the drug store.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 4:39PM
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I've seen it talked about and I think I did use it once or twice many many years ago but I quit using it because it wasn't cheap and guess bleach did fine when I needed it. Around here, peroxide is far more expensive than bleach.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 6:41PM
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On another forum someone used the Oxy laundry spray in and around her tub. She said everything including grout got clean. She couldn't achieve that using bleach.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 7:25PM
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Hydrogen peroxide isn't only in the "green" bleaches. It's also in Clorox 2.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 8:19PM
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It's the active ingredient in VIVID all color "bleach".

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 9:15AM
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Hydrogen peroxide is "oxygen" bleach. I wasn't very good at chemistry, but here goes. Liquid all fabric bleaches generally contain peroxide as the active ingredient, often diluted with other surfactancts, sodium citrate, enzymes or plain water. Powdered bleaches have the ions attached to either washing soda or borax, to become sodium percarbonate or sodium perborate and are often mixed with other surfactants, sodium carbonate, enzymes and brighteners.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 10:47AM
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A friend of mine runs a commercial laundry that washes linen for a number of large hotels. He mentioned once that one of the chemicals they use in the very large front loaders there is hydrogen peroxide. He said it was because it does a much better job of removing stains and making stuff white compared to chlorine bleach.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2009 at 5:58PM
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Well my next load of whites is gonna get peroxide in the bleach dispenser instead of bleach. I'm curious to try it. I have white wash clothes that are stained from using body wash. I wonder if that small amount will be enough since we're talking peroxide and not bleach.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2009 at 11:50PM
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"Well my next load of whites is gonna get peroxide in the bleach dispenser instead of bleach."

chlorine bleach dispense from bleach dispenser at First rinse...

hydrogen peroxide or sodium percarbonate or sodium perborate are mixed with Other detergent ingredients in Main wash dispenser....

Because oxygen bleach will NOT work on cold rinse water....

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 1:46AM
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Thanks :) That's good to know!

How much peroxide shall I use in a FL washer at the start of the cycle?

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 3:01AM
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Quoting from the link below: "Water temperature affects the bleaching rate of oxygen bleaches. Hot water accelerates the bleaching action. As water temperature decreases below 130 degrees F, exposure time must be increased substantially." So the chlorine bleach dispenser indeed isn't the right place for peroxide, whether your machine dispenses it near the end of the wash, or during the first rinse.

The link also makes it clear that non-chlorine bleaches either contain hydrogen peroxide (liquid bleaches) or form it when added to water (powdered bleaches). So this tip about peroxide really doesn't seem to be such a great discovery :-)

The mention of 130degF contradicts the propaganda that hot washing isn't necessary anymore. This is the official web site of the detergent manufacturers' trade association, after all. What's more, go to the list of page numbers at the top, and click on "7". This page actually defines hot as "130 degrees F (54.4 degrees C) or above. White and colorfast fabrics, heavily soiled loads and diapers." Anyone care to contact the washer manufacturers, and see what they say about this? :-)

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 10:11AM
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That is true. In the hotel case that I mentioned above, they are required to wash linen and towels at something like 185 degrees to meet health dept. requirements. Hot enough to activate the hydrogen peroxide I guess.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 6:49PM
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FYI... Wal-Mart (of all places) has a house brand "Free" liquid bleach (in a pretty pink plastic label wrapper) that is peroxide. No dyes, colors or enzymes.

Haven't been able to determine what the actual concentration is but it works well for me in my FL. I add a 1/2 to whole cup through the main detergent shoot once the load gets started.

- IT Geek

    Bookmark   June 13, 2009 at 2:47PM
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I work as a chef and needless to say clothes become rather soiled. I'd tried color safe bleach, oxyclean.. none of them worked that great. A few weeks ago I got a horrible stain on my carpet. tried professional carpet cleaning chemicals with little success...just a slight dulling of stain while mostly spreading it around the infected area. poured some 3% hydrogen peroxide on the stain, let sit for 1-2 hours and stain removed. it didn't affect the color of the carpet... you can't tell where I spot treated.

So I decided to use it in my laundry as well. IMO washing under cold water with 3% hydrogen peroxide hasn't resulted in any "bleaching" of colors. I fill the machine with cold water and 2 cups of hydrogen peroxide. put my clothes in, let the machine mix everything a bit, but while still full of detergent, peroxide, and water I let it sit for 1-2 hours. I haven't noticed any bleaching and it's removed stains that are literally over a year old and seems to brighten colors. Hydrogen peroxide really is a miracle worker.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2013 at 8:55PM
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As I understand it, the active ingredient in powdered "oxygen bleaches" (e.g., OxiClean, Ecover, etc.) is sodium percarbonate, which is an anhydrous (dry) form of hydrogen peroxide. So, I would guess that adding liquid hydrogen peroxide to your laundry achieves the same effect as the wash cycle performs when it adds water to sodium percarbonate (turning it into hydrogen peroxide).

So, the questions remain: which form of the compound is most effective, which form is more uniformly distributed (dry or liquid), and, for the equivalent amount of "oxidizing power," which costs the least?

Depending on the source, sodium percarbonate costs between $0.14-$0.32 /ounce (Ebay chemical suppliers, or from a US-based Ecover importer, respectively).

More specifically, on the cost question, at which dilution, and at what amount, does a hydrogen peroxide solution produce the equivalent amount of oxidation ("oxygen bleaching") per ounce of sodium percarbonate powder? Drugstore hydrogen peroxide is about 3-6% by weight; laboratory-grade, 30%; and commercial-grade, 60%; according to Wikipedia (note that the Wiki article also states that hydrogen peroxide may used as a jet-pack propellant . . . or, for making volcanoes in your kitchen).

Also, which product is easier to keep "active?" Sodium percarbonate reacts with water in the atmosphere, reducing its oxidation effectiveness, resulting in, I believe, sodium carbonate (washing soda, or "soda ash"). I assume hydrogen peroxide breaks down in sunlight (hence, the brown bottles), and in open-air.

This post was edited by studio460 on Tue, Jun 11, 13 at 23:22

    Bookmark   June 11, 2013 at 10:56PM
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