General Question

flutherother's avatar

How much detergent should I use?

Asked by flutherother (26904points) April 20th, 2014

I have a medium sized washing machine in a soft water area and my girl friend says she can smell the powder in my washed clothes. I thought I was using too much but according to the instructions I am using too little. Any advice appreciate.

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6 Answers

Dan_Lyons's avatar

Don’t use powder, use liquid. It is more eco friendly and it far more readily dissolves in water. Always use a little less than the suggested usage on the package {they want you to buy more sooner}.
What temperature is your rinse cycle?

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Is smelling freshly laundered clothes a bad thing? It may just be a matter of switching detergent brands. Some are fragrance-free, It may just be a matter of changing brands and not the amount.

flutherother's avatar

Thanks for the advice. I think I will try a different detergent. I can’t smell anything at all in my washed clothes but then I have a very poor sense of smell. The manual doesn’t quote a temperature for the rinse cycle but my wash cycle is usually 60 degrees.

cazzie's avatar

Use unscented. Last time my boyfriend came and visited me I couldn’t stand the smell of his washing powder so I had to rewash some of his clothes. I have a frightfully sensitive nose. Your soft water means that you can use less washing powder and dissolving the powder isn’t your problem. Conversely, let her chose a brand she likes so the smell doesn’t bother her. Women tend to have a more sensitive sense of smell.

To use up what you have left, throw the loads on an extra rinse and spin cycle to help dissipate the smell.

As for the eco-argument raised by @Dan_Lyons , that is debatable. Sure, fillers in the powdered type usually mean a more complex chemical make up, but they come in cardboard boxes, which is more environmentally friendly than the plastic bottles the liquid variety come in. You could also argue that the carbon footprint of the plastic bottles and the wasted amount of transport costs with weight and size of them is bigger. Finding a good, concentrated powder packaged in cardboard is your best eco-friendly washing detergent.

hearkat's avatar

A lot of the fragrances in laundry products make me sneeze, and I am leery of the chemicals, so I use Seventh Generation Fragrance-Free. I still use big-name fabric softeners, because the eco-friendly ones just don’t do the job of quelling static; but I use the Free and Clear versions of those. It’s possible that your friend is just extra-sensitive to the fragrance in the brand you’re using.

Other variables in determining how much detergent to use are whether you have a front- or top-loading washer, and which size load you select on the machine.

Gatopaz's avatar

I think it’s okay to have a fresh smell in your clothes. If it’s strong then you are using too much. Whatever you use now try using half as much. I like liquid compared to powder.
The newer machines calls for much less detergent.

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