Reason(s) for not putting detergent inside drum?

amsunshineSeptember 17, 2010

Hello all: I've been reading these boards with great interest and will be getting my new Samsung FL on Saturday. I've learned so much and want to be very pro-active about preventing any mold or mildew in my new washer.

I'm wondering -- with all the posts about mold building up in and around the detergent dispenser due to gunky detergent buildup -- is it really necessary to use the dispenser for dispensing detergent? Is there a special reason the HE detergent can't be put directly into the drum with the laundry?

I would imagine the reason might be to make sure the detergent mixes with water first and doesn't stain clothing -- but I haven't really seen any posts discussing this, so....just wanted clarification. It seems that additives like OxiClean and Borax can be added directly to the drum safely (at least I've read that some do this without problems). Why not the detergent, too?

Thanks for any advice!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Don't over-think it. A few people have had problems but most haven't.

I've had my Duet 9400 for 5 1/2 years and have had zero problems of this kind. Inner and outer drums and dispenser are as squeaky-clean as when the machine was new. There are two other identical machines within my family reporting same. On the other hand, I've read the posts here from people who have reported mold and goo with the same machines we have. I still don't get it although I have long suspected over-dosing. Don't know.

I would suggest reading the manual and doing what it says. I'll bet you never have the issue.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 12:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I assume it's because putting detergent directly on the clothes could make a stain or faded spot before the detergent gets diluted by the water. Seems to me that using Tide HE with optical brighteners has caused a lot of my dark cottons to get blotchy faded areas, so I wouldn't want to get it full strength on the clothes while the machine is filling with water. I'm switching to a detergent with no optical brighteners to see if that helps.

Hope you love your new Samsung as much as I love mine. I just got it three weeks ago and am delighted with it. I washed a king sized comforter, sheets & mattress pad yesterday no problem. (Not in one load, of course!) So nice to have clean bedding without fear of damaging the machine.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 10:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'd say it's fine if you put the detergent in with the clothes. After all, most top loader users do the same. And there are some and top and front loaders that fill in such a way that detergent is flushed straight onto the laundry. Europeans have been adding liquid detergent straight to the laundry for ages - via dosing devices like the one below, which are put on top of the load. I'm actually surprised this does not exist in the US. It really keeps any liquid detergent gunk out of the dispenser drawer.

HTH, Alex

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 7:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for the replies! I am liking my new washer so far, although I think it's having an issue with the auto temp control. I may have to get a new one. Otherwise, I really like it.

whirlpool trainee: I suspected there might not be a problem putting the detergent directly in, for the reasons you stated. I just didn't know if maybe there was something new about these new FL mashines that is different. Glad to know this is an option. I'm having no apparent problems using the dispenser with powder detergent. And it's no problem wiping everything down after I'm done. Very pleased so far.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 12:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you say more about your ATC symptoms/suspicions?

If you're describing typical ATC, I suspect it's actually fine but incapable of doing much in your low-water-use machine. They're pretty much all like that because there isn't enough water entering the machine for it to have much effect given the mass of the drum and clothes in it. ATC was effective in conventional TL's that used much more water, and was well-responded to by buyers for that reason. Carry over to low-water-use HE machines tapped that market-response. However, effectiveness in any practical sense was very much diminished, almost to the point of uselessness.

How long a pipe do you have between water heater and machine? Which is to ask, from a cold start how much water passes before the hot water hits the outlet? Do you know your cold-water temp? Do you know your hot-water temp? Does your machine have an on-board heater that operates in some cycles?

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 2:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


I have the low end Samsung with no onboard heater (WF210). I knew what I was getting into without a heater as I researched and thought I had the tools to deal with it. Here's what is happening:

When I do a hot wash, the water is lukewarm. I run the water at the tap next to the washer until the water is hot before I turn on the machine (I thought this would compensate somewhat for the lack of a heater). I have my hands on the hoses while the washer is filling (they are hooked up correctly.) For a hot wash, the cold runs approximately 31 seconds. Then the hot runs for approximately 17 seconds. So, I'm getting about a 1/3 to 2/3 ratio of hot to cold water.

Then when I run a warm wash, I can't feel the hot water hose running at all -- only the cold. This seems very strange. It doesn't seem to matter if I run the tap next to the washer or not. The result is the same.

I've chatted with a Samsung rep online, who agrees there seems to be something wrong. I've printed out our chat for myself and filled out an online service request.

Anyway...I don't think this is the way the washer is supposed to work. Without an onboard heater, how is the water supposed to be hot with so much cold water?

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 4:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"I'd say it's fine if you put the detergent in with the clothes. After all, most top loader users do the same"

Keep in mind, though, that top loaders don't use High Efficiency detergents, and front loaders do. Perhaps you could test a bit of full strength HE detergent on a old clothes for a few minutes then rinse it out to see if it causes fading or any other problems.

I sorta kinda add detergent directly to the drum. I don't like the liquid residue that clings to the sides of the measuring cap (mess!) so I fill the cap with hot water & add it to the clothes until the cup is thoroughly rinsed out. But that's such a dilute solution, I don't worry about it.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 4:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Inasmuch as you've described your situation to the Samsung rep and he/she, too, says there seems to be something wrong, I must back off a notch. Appears that he/she is being responsive to your concerns.

Mfgs currently have their own ideas about what "hot", "warm", and "cold" mean to them -- most not matching well with what people in the real world expect. Often they adjust their "ATC" controls to reflect their definitions. However, "hot" settings generally, even now, mean "tap hot" inflow for the entirety of the fill.

I going to assume the Samsung folks will put everything right by you. However, be advised that even when you get 100% tap-hot water running into your machine, you'll still never get a "tap hot" wash. The mass of the inner and outer drums plus the clothes will reduce the actual wash temperature to some version of warm. Without an on-board heater, you won't be able to bring it back. Since you said you researched before buying and likely was aware of this, I assume it's OK with you.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 4:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

asolo: yes, I was prepared for some heat loss -- I just was not prepared for what seems to me to be a disproportionate amount of cold water feeding into the drum on the hot cycle and the lack of any hot water at all feeding in on the warm cycle!

I did think my research had prepared me, but if this turns out to be the correct way the washer is supposed to operate, maybe I was not as prepared as I originally thought. I may return this one if there is no problem with it and pay the extra for one with an onboard heater.

My thought is that if this is the way many fl washers are supposed work, it may be no wonder some are having problems with mold. People may think they are doing warm or hot washes, but are literally getting the opposite. I can lower my expectations a bit, but honestly....cold tap water only for a "warm" wash cycle?

Happily, though, the Samsung rep seems to agree something is not right. We'll see when the service tech gets here, I suppose.

Thanks so much for everyone's input!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 5:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Aha! I figured out just now by experimenting that the "short cycle" gives me a greater proportion of hot water than does the "normal" cycle. I even saw steam on the inside of the door! Hmm...I wonder why the short cycle gets hotter than the normal or heavy duty cycles? I hope the service tech can explain this to me. It could be that the ATC is just funky. At least I know I can use the short cycle on heavy soil level for a nice hot wash (albeit short).

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 8:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well, it's just a machine. How about two short-cycles if needed? : )

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 8:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

LOL! That's exactly what my dh suggested! He said, if worse comes to worst, just do two short cycles! :)

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 9:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Seems fishy to me. Okay, the newest super-efficient Frigidaire washers define Hot as 110*F but still... just cold water for a warm wash, seriously? I tried searching online but didn't find a lot of information regarding temps - as usual. This is the best I found:

How do I adjust the temperature of the water for the warm setting?
On my old washer, I adjusted the water pressure of the hot and cold faucets to set the warm water temperature but the installer implied that the WF330 chooses its own warm setting without regard to the pressure of the hot and cold water.

Is that true or do I need to adjust the faucets just like I did for my old washer? There is nothing in the user manual that suggests the WF330 adjusts the pressure/temperature for the warm setting.

If the washer selects its own temperature for warm water, please tell me what that temperature is?


Thank you for the question. I would not recommend adjusting the water temperature by manually reducing the water pressure for the hot or cold faucet, because this could lead to a "No Fill" (NF) error on the machine. The WF330, and other Samsung washers, cycles the hot water valve in order to achieve the goal temperatures, as follows: Cold = 60*F-85*F; Warm = 85*F-105*F; Hot = 105*F-125*F; Extra Hot/Sanitize cycle uses the internal water heater to boost the temperature to over 150*F.

- Ms. Samsung

HTH, Alex

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 2:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Fifteen to twenty-degree "targets" temp ranges? "Warm" begins at 85? "Hot" begins at 105? What a hoot from Ms. Samsung! No wonder buyers are so frequently voicing confusion and/or disappointment.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 3:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks, Alex for the info you posted. I got the same info from a Samsung rep by phone re: the target temps.

I realize these target temps are lower than what the general public might expect for cold, warm and hot. But I'd actually be ok with getting these warm or hot temps in my loads. I'm not. Today, I've used a meat thermometer to take the temp of my tap hot water, and the temps of my hot loads. My tap hot is 130 degrees. The highest temp of my hot washes (inside the washer) has been somewhere b/w 80 and 90 degrees.

This can't be right.

Still waiting to hear from Samsung's service tech. :-/

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 5:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

FWIW....I, too, have 130F tap-hot water. My 5+ year old Duet has ATC but when I set "hot" it does, indeed, fill 100% from the hot connection. When I run the tap first so that 130F water flows in from the first drop, my actual wash temp ends up between 100-105. That's how much heat the drum and a full load of laundry bleeds out of the incoming water. If I want hotter, I must select one of three cycles that activate the on-board heater.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 6:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think I'd be ok with 100-105! The ideal might be higher, but averaging 85 seems too low to me. Also, I can't understand why the cold would be filling so much during hot cycles. The Samsung rep did seem to think something was not right. I'm wondering if I just got a lemon.

On the other hand, it seems to clean ok so far. It's quiet and seems to be behaving the way it should otherwise. Clothes look and smell fresh, clean and soft. I've always added borax to my loads and vinegar rinses and I'm continuing with that. I'm using 7th Gen powder, which is new for me, but it seems to be doing a good job. Just fiddling with the amounts right now. It does appear that I need extra rinses.

I would just really like a hotter hot wash, I guess. It doesn't have to be Miele-hot. Above 100 degrees would be nice.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 6:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Regarding a range for the target temps ... some machines with ATC vary the target for each temp depending on the cycle and soil level. Warm may be cooler at light soil than heavy soil on a given cycle. Different cycles, such as Delicate vs. Regular, may have different targets for warm at the same soil level.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 7:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks, dadoes. I did think of this. I haven't had a chance to try every single different combination of cycles and soil levels, but so far, I haven't seen much difference in selecting heavy soil levels. It's so new, though, I need to experiment some more. The service tech for Samsung comes tomorrow morning! Hoping for the best....

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 8:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"Above 100 degrees would be nice."


Yo dadoes....understand what you're saying...except......

Must we be COMPLETELY under the control of whoever DECIDES FOR US what water temp we'd like? In the case of the OP....can't he/she even get a *%!! tap-hot wash? Man, I've got a bad feeling about this.

My home. My machines -- obtained at incredible price! My laundry items. And the "gods" won't allow me to decide how the hell I want to wash MY OWN MY OWN MY OWN home? I can well understand the annoyances being expressed.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 8:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have a Samsung(337, I think). It has a heater that only works on the "sanitize" setting. That takes about 2 hours and 20 minutes to do a load. That is how long it takes for the water to get to 150 degrees. I don't like my machine because of the lack of true user controls on the temperature, amount of water etc.. It is just that you have to try to compensate for whatever Samsung did to get an Energy Star rating. From now on I'm going to buy only appliances that fail the energy star test. Then maybe you could get enough hot water to wet the clothes and rinse the soap out.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 1:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ok....the service tech left a little while ago. Not good news. He verified that my hoses were hooked up correctly and that on either normal or heavy duty cycles, the ratio of hot to cold water on a "hot" cycle is about 1/3 to 2/3. He felt the water and agreed it was just barely warm. He was puzzled. He called his tech support number and talked to them for a while. He asked them if they would talk to me, but they didn't want to.

The news is: this is the way the washer is programmed to work. He didn't know why and the tech support person apparently didn't know why either. I asked him why, on warm washes, only the cold fills the washer. Again, he didn't have an answer.

He also said tech support told him that he detergents are made to dissolve in 60 degree water. I said, maybe so, but that doesn't mean it's going to get my clothes clean -- particularly whites and heavily soiled items. I also pointed out that the temps in this washer won't inhibit mold growth. He agreed.

So, after he left, I did a bunch of testing (so much for water and energy savings). I filled and emptied the washer on various cycles and took the water temps (no clothes in the washer).

On both normal and heavy duty cycles, hot, and heavy soil setting, the water temp is 85 degrees!

Here's where the point dadoes brought up appears to be applicable: On the quick cycle, hot, normal soil level, the water was 95 degrees. On heavy soil level, the water appeared to be about 103-104 degrees. (Samsung's lowest "hot" is 105 degrees, so it didn't even reach that point).

This is apparent misrepresentation -- the warm cycle only fills with tap cold water, so what's the difference between that and the cold cycle? Maybe if my tap cold water was cooler, the hot might kick in a little per atc, but I can't really test that.

I'm in a quandary. I got this washer at a fantastic sale at Best Buy that has now ended. I cannot now exchange the washer for a comparable model (pricewise) without paying at least $100 more.

I'm looking wistfully now at the Whirlpool Duet 9150 which was my 2nd choice (and the same sale price then). It has a "whitest whites" cycle that might be hot enough for me. :-(

Sorry for the rambling.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 1:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This is awful news. For me, this would be quite unacceptable. "Hot" now means 105 degrees? Most people's showers are hotter than that! "Warm" means tap-cold? This is nuts.

Talk about "buyer beware"........

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 3:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I know. :-(

I really had no idea!

I called Best Buy they said they'd honor the sale prices for any washer as of the day I purchased the one I have now. So I called Whirlpool to ask them how hot their whitest whites cycle gets. They said it's just their standard "hot" cycle, with a longer wash time. :-(

The lady from Whirlpool also said that there are government mandates that they have to comply with for their atc temps. You'll never believe what she told me those temps were. Cold: 60-70; Warm: 70-80; Hot: 90-100.

Umm...I might have to just stick with the Samsung and just do the two quickwash cycles if I really want a "hot" cycle. And then bleach the heck out of it to clean the tubs every so often to keep away mold and mildew. We really can't afford to spend more for one with a heater -- I've looked around and can't seem to find a washer at a similar pricepoint that seems to have a hot cycle. Who knew that washers could be such a headache?

Thus, I started another thread looking for a front loader w/o heater that has a reasonably hot wash. Maybe someone knows of one.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 3:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sheesh, I wonder whether the lady from Whirlpool came up with that lie by herself, or Whirlpool taught it to her. A few facts:

1) Government regulations, both the mandatory ones and the voluntary ones, don't specify temperature. Rather, they regulate energy (and water) consumption.

2) The only mandate (hard requirement) for US washing machines is the Federal Standard. This is a very loose standard, especially as applied to front-loaders. The current one, up until the end of this year, doesn't even include a limitation on water consumption.

Well, for the rest, I'll copy something I posted a few months ago in another thread:


[Gardenweb member name omitted], your statement "Getting HOT water on a regular cycle is a joke, just like all Energy Star machines" expresses a nearly universal misunderstanding. I'll try to set the record straight here.

First, a little background. Clothes washer efficiency is expressed in terms of Modified Energy Factor (MEF) and Water Factor (WF). Higher MEF is more energy-efficient, and lower WF is more water-efficient.

This page

Clothes Washers Key Product Criteria

defines MEF and WF, and says the Energy Star standards require MEF >= 1.8, and WF Do a "Quick Search" for model number WF419 on

Find ENERGY STAR Qualified Clothes Washers

to find that the Samsung WF419 has an MEF of 2.86 and a WF of 3.11.

So, the WF419 is way more efficient than required by Energy Star. Why? The answer is likely found on

Tax Incentives Assistance Project

where you can see that the WF419 exceeds the criteria for earning a $250/unit tax credit, with no annual cap.

So your washer, and many others, go way beyond the Energy Star requirements, in order to earn a very substantial tax credit. I don't know why they go beyond even the tax credit requirements.

So, while everyone thinks that appliance manufacturers have had standards forced on them by the government, and therefore forgives the manufacturers for performance compromises, the fact is that the manufacturers are getting money for selling compromised machines. Not being familiar with the economics of the industry, I don't know how much of that money improves their bottom line, and how much it reduces the price you pay.

I'm not opposed to conservation, and I'm not opposed to tax credit incentives. But if the facts are known only by one side of the transaction (the industry), then it isn't truly a "free-market incentive", and the consumer is at a disadvantage.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 5:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I LUV it! HE has come to mean too little water and all cold. Warm if you're lucky. And they won't tell you unless you personally call and badger them about it. This rates about 9.6 on the suck-meter!

I want to know how the regulators get their OWN clothes clean! (Silly me. I know they send them out.)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 7:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ok, maybe this is just evil, but would it be too bad if I just switched the hot and cold hoses for filling the washer if I really wanted a hotter wash? :-P

Ugh, I have a headache from all of this....

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 9:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

IMHO, in dealing with these trolls, ANYTHING would be permissible. But something tells me none of it will solve your problem. You own a machine that will never do what you expect it to do.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 9:37PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
which compact washer/dryer?
I really wanted the Miele touchtronic washer/dryer...
Combo washer-dryer in USA?
Do they allow to purchase and use an all-in-on e washer+dryer...
Does Persil Liquid ProClean from Walmart USA contain....
optical brighteners. Their website is next to useless...
essentials you can't live without in your front load washing machine?
I am trying to purchase a new washing machine for our...
Tide Turbo Clean Detergent
Has anyone tried the new tide turbo clean line. I saw...
Sponsored Products
WS Bath Collections Nina Fragrance 66 Inch Modern Acrylic Freestanding Tub Multi
Ribbon Red Ovo Table Lamp
$99.99 | Lamps Plus
Dazzle Double Gourd Table Lamp
$99.99 | Lamps Plus
Wam Bam Premium Arched Vinyl Gate - 6 ft. - VG13007
$309.99 | Hayneedle
Red Cedar Adirondack Footrest
Filament Design Wall Mounted Lighting & Sconces 1-Light Satin Nickel Sconce
Home Depot
Uttermost Alenya Floor Lamp w/ Semi Drum Hardback Shade in Champagne
Beyond Stores
Cover for Lynx 54-inch Built-in Grill
$239.00 | FRONTGATE
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™