Regular powdered detergent + Front load washer = ? Results

bestf100June 22, 2011

We've been using regular powdered Tide in our 2003 HE3T Kenmore Elite front load washer the past 8 years with Great results. However, we have reduced the quantity of detergent used, to reduce the chance of excessive suds (1 tablespoon, give or take, depending on size of the load). We very rarely use the internal heater.


1) Is anyone else doing the same thing for their front loaders? Or is everyone else using HE detergent?

2) Am I missing something? What was supposed to be the downside of using regular detergent in this application? What ever it is, we have saved a ton on laundry detergent, over the years.

3) I am considering A] a large capacity NEW Kenmore Elite (4.3 cubic ft), B] Large capacity Maytag front loader, with the direct drive, or C] large capacity LG top loader (4.5 cubic ft Wave Force). Can I get away with my same detergent habits/vices in this new application?

4) Any suggestions on what to buy next? It has got to have a large capacity and has to be durable (Two teenage boys = a lot of clothes). My current Kenmore Elite washer & dryers are still going strong, but I am selling them because I am moving to Tennessee. No natural gas lines for my current gas dryer there. So I am selling the old matching set.

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I guess I'm not sure why you are asking the question - you say you've had great results for 8 years, so it sounds like you know that whatever you are doing is working. It was recommended 8 years ago for you to use an HE product, which you didn't do, and you experienced no problems. Your clothes must be getting clean, there must not be any mildew or buildup inside your machine, and your machine and clothes don't smell like mold or mildew. Right?

So why would buying a new machine today make you more inclined to follow the manufacturer's detergent recommendations when you didn't do it 8 years ago, and with great results? I guess I'm just a little confused by your post.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 8:51PM
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One to one and a half tablespoons Regular Cheer Powder + regular high temp washes (not every load but at least a handful per washday) + 19 years (Asko and Miele machines) + my particular water chemistry = great cleaning results, no damage to machine, no mildew, no excess suds.

Note italics. YMMV. 'Nuf said.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 11:17PM
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Your assumption that HE detergents are more expensive to use appears to be incorrect. I've often seen those assumptions here and on other blogs, and although that may have been true in the early days of HE, it is no longer the case. Look in your detergent aisle. Some detergents (Clorox Greenworks, for one) recommend lower dosage for HE than regular topload machines, making the cost per load LESS for HE users than it would in regular machines. What am I missing about all these people saying HE is more expensive to use?

Just sayin'

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 9:25AM
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What ever it is, we have saved a ton on laundry detergent, over the years.

If you're using half the normal dose of non-He detergent, you should be able to use half a dose of He detergent. The price is the same. In fact, I noticed just this morning that the powdered 'he' Tide was $2 cheaper than regular Tide powder. Each box was marked for 80 loads of laundry. Liquids were the same price. The only difference is one has sudsing agents and the other does not.

The water softness/hardness may be different in your new location, which may require a different amount of detergent. Lots of discussion here already, the topic has been beaten to death. ;-)
Those of us with the same machine use different amounts due to water differences, so YMMV (your mileage may vary). In addition, the size of a new washer might affect that as well, depending on size of laundry load. HTH

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 2:21PM
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