Front loaders + soap residue in clothes

bindersbeeSeptember 13, 2008

I'm feeling much less enamoured of my LG Tromm front load machines today. Actually, I'm kind of miffed. I've had them for awhile but just recently realized that they are the source of a problem.

There is a ton of soap residue left in the clothes. I know this because it's messing up my Rowenta iron. At first I thought it was just that I hadn't cleaned the iron for awhile- so I bought the gel stuff and cleaned it. Then I thought maybe it was something to do with my ironing pad- so I bought a new one.

It finally dawned on me that the problem was coming from clothes which had been washed in my machine. The thicker the fabric, the bigger the problem. On a polo shirt, I went from having a clean iron when I started to one that was too gummy to use before I'd even finished the shirt.

Has anyone else had this problem? I am using the Kirkland Brand HE detergent from Costco. Am I making my loads too big? Too much detergent in the load? On a large load, I fill the detergent cup halfway to the full line since the detergent container says it's 'concentrated'. Do I need to do an extra rinse cycle with each load- which kind of defeats the water-saving purpose? My family has sensitive skin so the extra soap in their clothes is highly undesireable.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

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I had the same problem . I have a top loader and I switched from Kirkland regular to Kirkland HE a while back. I cut way down on the amount I was using but still got LOTS of suds in the washer. Right now I am in the process of washing all my towels with water to get it all out. I won't be using this brand again.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 2:41PM
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I've heard that this brand is notorious for sudsing, but haven't tried it yet myself. I did buy a box of powder that I was going to try when I've used up some of my other brands, and I noticed that it is HE "compatible." Maybe this makes a difference? I already told my sister, who has an old TLer, that she can take the box, since I don't think it's going to work for me. Anyone else have experience with this brand?

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 4:02PM
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The Kirkland brand stuff MUST be it. I've had my machines for more than a year and only recently started having this problem. I've used the Kirkland brand HE stuff for awhile too but they changed the formulation to 'concentrate' it last time I bought it.

I haven't really had problems with it until I started using the 'New and Improved' version of the detergent. I do believe you have all helped solve the problem. In addition to what I described above the 'New and Improved' kind doesn't seem to go through my machine well- it's too thick or something and I'm always finding a lot of water in the dispenser cup. I have an unused container of it I bought on my last Costco trip- I think I'll be returning it on my next trip. Thanks for the help.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 4:49PM
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Is this a liquid?

I think all the so called "new and improved" 2x, 3x concentrated liquids are causing way to much sudsing and build up. They apparently do not rinse out very well.

I had been using Tide HE and I started noticing my problems after they went to the 2x ultra formula. I have a Neptune TL machine.

I recently switched to Sears brand powder HE formula and am in the process of de-gunking all my clothing, towels, sheets, etc. I have noticed that the thicker items like towels and quilts have a lot of build up that causes much sudsing even though I am only using a measuring teaspoon of the Sears detergent on them. I have to use extra rinses on them.


    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 5:00PM
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I have a Neptune Front Load machine.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 5:02PM
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I don't have a frontloader; I do have an HE toploader, so take what I say with a grain of salt.

I've been using Sears brand powder HE formula since I bought my new washer, and I haven't had any problem at all with detergent residue in the laundry. I've watched for it, because of all the posts like yours I've read here, but so far, no problems at all.

If I were in your shoes, I'd definitely wash the affected laundry with no detergent in at least one load, would use the hottest temp appropriate for that type laundry, and would use about 1/2 cup vinegar in the fabric softener dispenser, as it cuts detergent out of laundry.

I truly hope this helps.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 5:17PM
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I havent tried that brand, but Dont use liquid HE any brand in fl. I am still trying to get soap out of towels that I use to put 1/2 Tbl Tide HE liquid. I have tried 1/2 cup vinegar and that hasnt worked for me either, I now use on all my other clothes reg gain powder, but Im sure any powder would be good, but wash you clothes till you dont see suds in rinse water anymore.

Good luck

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 6:45PM
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I found this article and thought it might be of interest to others since it seems so many are experiencing the same problem. HE Detergents. Be sure to click on the link "High-Efficiency Washers and Detergents Guide" in the last paragraph.

Although I am believing that any HE liquid may cause a problem as well, especially the new concentrated formulas.

I know a lot of you use regular (non HE) detergents, but how do you know which ones are low sudsing? I've looked at several brands and can't find anywhere on the box that says if it's low sudsing or not.


    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 8:01PM
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That is a GREAT site, i_dig_it - very informative. Someone gave me that link when I was learning about HE washers/detergents, and it was a big help to me.

I remember reading that using regular laundry detergent in an HE washer is like using regular dishwashing detergent in a dishwasher - Yikes!

I also read that manufacturers will not honor an HE washer warranty if HE detergent isn't used. That sealed the deal for me.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2008 at 9:31PM
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I would like to mention some time ago, when I was researching HE detergents, I found article when they said most of the cheap laundry detergents are low or lower sudsing because some of the sudsy stuff cost money and cheap brands don't use it. I have LG TROMM and I've used anything from Tide HE to generic Sun from Walmart and never had suds problem. I ususally mix HE and the other just in case. Soap or liquid, doesn't make any difference.
When it comes to dosing, I am surprised how little soap you guys use. I fill my dispenser to the max everytime and cup of baking soda straight inside the drum.
But I also use water plus and extra rinse averytime and prewash too.Vinegar instead of FS.And hot water always.
When I used smaller dose, my laundry wasn't clean. We do have hard water, so maybe that's why and my BF uses lots of medical creams and lotions for his dermatitis so this might be make a difference too. However, I have no mildew or mold problem and laundry smells clean, not soapy.
Thanks to lots of peple here, I discovered CS and just ordered some. The idea of having even healthier laundry sounds good, plus I thing it could help w/ the dermatitis too.
I love my TROMM, even thou kind of expensive, it is worth every penny. And when it comes to saving water or power, in our case we worry more about having germs and yack out.I got FL because I'm use to it from Europe. We always had FL. Plus they look so great too

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 2:20AM
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Thanks for the advice on soaps. I will read it throughly. For the last poster (or anyone else) what is CS? And what is the purpose of baking soda in the drum?

    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 11:15AM
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CS is Charlies Soap you can get it online, I dont know about the baking soda.

I have to tell everyone that is commenting on the non HE and how little we use. I personally have had a serious issue with my Duet not rinsing out soap from towels, jeans, heavy fabrics, I dont have the extra water choice, I wish I did. I have been trying to get soap out of towels for 5 months now without using anysoap and 1/2 cp vinegar and still its a problem.
I use non HE powder on other clothes and I use 1/2 tbl same as when I used HE, where the non HE rinses out and doesnt fill with suds, the HE does not rinse out and I have to rinse a few times to get the soap out of a light casual load. I now have been using use Gain powder, I tried CS but it didnt clean as well and didnt rinse that well either, and it left a white residue on the glass.

I dont know why they would say that it would void the warranty, because with my experience with the differences are the HE soaps are horrible suds problem in my duet, as the NON HE are not. ???

Again I wish I would have bought something other than my Whirlpool duet 9200.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 2:40PM
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mc58, I have been reading your posts about your towels and can sympathize with you, because I too have noticed a lot of suds coming from my towels. I previously used Liq. Tide HE, but after reading this forum I have started using Sears HE Advanced Formula Powder. I have been using less than 1 Tblsp. for real dirty clothes (like Hubby's work clothes) and 1 tsp. for everything else. The towels are causing the biggest problem and today I have washed the same load three times (twice without any detergent). I know I was probably overdosing my clothes with the Liq. Tide HE.

I have written to three different companies about if their non HE powdered detergent is low sudsing and safe for use in an HE machine, but so far not one has answered me. :-/

The three I wrote to are:
Arm & Hammer w/Oxi Clean
Gain w/baking soda

I have heard that these are safe and low sudsing, but I would just like to hear what the companies have to say.

I know you are using Gain. Has anyone else used any of the others? Results?


    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 3:30PM
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I can't speak for others, but I use baking soda when I wash white towels/washcloths, and grungy white clothes like t-shirts, socks, and underwear (I wash for two guys who work in HVAC). Baking soda doubles the whitening power of chlorine bleach, which means I can use half of the latter when I use the former. :-)

I've also noticed that towels come out really soft and fluffy when I use the baking soda in the drum, and 1/2 c. white vinegar in the fabric softener dispenser.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2008 at 4:08PM
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