Just got a Miele pair, how do I get my old dingy whts, wht again?

lmrinc_gwJuly 24, 2010

Our old top loader didn't clean much...I got a Miele 4840 and love it so far. I've read a lot of tips on here like running the sanitize cycle often and leave the door open to avoid the mold and mildew smell.

I read a lot of reviews about the mieles that made me want to buy them...people said that it will get old stains out and old dingy whites white again...this isn't so for me.

I'm using Persil mega pearls and ecover fs. and doing the extra white cycle.

I did use a ecover stain stick on a white (dingy) rug and the spot I cleaned came out sparkling white but not the rest. I don't like using toxic ingredients but is bleach my only option?

Also, can I use vinegar and borax safely in the washer?

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I recently had trouble with dingy and yellowed whites after using strictly Charlie's Soap and Ecover oxygen bleach for a couple of years. I prefer natural detergents, but I bit the bullet and bought some Tide and Tide Stain Release to try to rehab my whites. I used the hottest, longest settings available on my washer and the difference in my whites after just one wash was amazing. Subsequent washes have gotten my whites even whiter, at this point they are back to snowy white.

I do find that Tide can fade dark colored clothing, but it sure does clean whites.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2010 at 8:06PM
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So I've just been using one scoop (a charlie's scoop) of persil mega pearls...is this too little?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2010 at 9:51PM
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I have a W4840. Not familiar with the products you're using, but I'll make some general observations.

You don't say what temperature and options you're using on the Extra White cycle. For items you're trying to "rescue", hotter is better, so use Hot instead of Extra Warm if possible. It's often possible to wash at a higher temperature than the care label says. And some damage from too-hot washing is cumulative, so the risk from doing it only once or twice is lower. Besides, if the articles are too dingy and stained to wear now, you don't have much to lose.

Use the Extended option, which gives a longer wash cycle. Note that the manual says Extended should be used for normal soiling. You certainly want to use it for stuff you're trying to rescue.

You need an adequate dose of bleach for whitening. Non-chlorine (oxygen) bleach can be very effective at higher temperatures (Miele's "Hot" of 140F or hotter, if possible), and it's less toxic and gentler on fabrics than chlorine bleach. I've found little need for chlorine bleach since I got the W4840.

Lastly, in general I don't believe in the idea of using drastically less detergent than recommended by the manufacturer. Very soft water, or small loads, will call for less detergent, but the recommended dose is a good starting point for average water and average loads. The way I see it, detergent packages are labeled for a certain number of loads. It wouldn't make economic sense for the manufacturer to include far more active ingredients than needed for that many loads.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2010 at 11:41PM
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@lmrinc: Did you buy your machine used or new? If new, I'm surprised you got the W4840 since that's a discontinued model. I believe the W4840 was discontinued in Q1 of this year and replaced with the W4842.

What is the hardness of your water? This has a direct impact on how much detergent you use. Dosing is not a big problem with top loaders, since they tend to be more forgiving given the large volume of water they use. However, in a front loader the pool of water is much smaller. After adding detergent you will have a very concentrated pool of cleaning solution in your machine. Add too much detergent and you'll have rinsing issues. Too little detergent and you won't get your clothes very clean.

If you don't know your water hardness, check with your local water company's water quality report. Hardness also goes by terms such as grains and total dissolved solids (TDS). You will see that Megaperls has dosage instructions based on your water's hardness level, so knowing that part of the equation is very important.

Generally speaking, you will get the whitest whites when washing on HOT or Sanitize temps. I use Persil Megaperls Universal w/ sodium percarbonate (same as Ecover non-chlorine bleach) and have very bright whites. Because I have a whole house water softener, my water hardness is ZERO and I use about 3 TBS per large, normally soiled load.

In my experience, dingy whites are caused by insufficient detergent. One tablespoon of Charlie's Soap will work if you have extremely soft water and a smaller capacity machine. If you are using a large capacity front loader (4.0+ cuft) then 2 TBS of Charlie's Soap is probably more appropriate. Charlie's also doesn't work well in hard water conditions. If you have hard water and using only 1 TBS of CS in a big machine, I think that would explain why you had dingy whites. The W4840 won't do anything to get your laundry whiter unless you figure out if you're using enough detergent.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2010 at 4:36PM
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sshriva...it was new and it was the floor model. I called Miele, and they said the only difference was they took express wash out of Master care and on to the main options and switched it with something else.

I'm not sure of the hardness but I just added more scoops to my dark load, with a stinky kitchen towel and a throw so lets hope they come out clean!

I will buy some oxiclean asap! Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 27, 2010 at 2:26PM
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Disucssion continuing in thread below:

Here is a link that might be useful: Laundry 101 basic answers needed

    Bookmark   August 4, 2010 at 11:03AM
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