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  #1  
Old 08-03-2004, 10:00 AM
Wesley Clark Wesley Clark is online now
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What happens if you use too much laundry detergent

Will the suds spill out of the machine? I'm not talking about using an entire box, just 2x the recommended amount or something along those lines. What will happen.
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  #2  
Old 08-03-2004, 10:10 AM
Nametag Nametag is offline
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2x will probably just leave you with soap in your clothes; you'll have to run an extra cycle with no soap to rinse them out.
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  #3  
Old 08-03-2004, 10:12 AM
Duke Duke is offline
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I did it once as an absentminded college student, and nothing spectacular occurred other than chunks of laundry detergent materializing in my clothes' pockets. No real biggie.
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Old 08-03-2004, 10:40 AM
PatriotX PatriotX is offline
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What's more fun is to use dishwashing liquid instead.
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  #5  
Old 08-03-2004, 10:48 AM
bordelond bordelond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke
I did it once as an absentminded college student, and nothing spectacular occurred other than chunks of laundry detergent materializing in my clothes' pockets. No real biggie.
Duke's right for powdered detergent. Nametag's right about the liquid stuff.

The gist of it is that the washer's normal rinse cycle will not be long enough to rinse out all the extra detergent. Shouldn't really hurt anything, although a soapy residue can build up on your clothes if you make detergent overuse a habit.
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  #6  
Old 08-03-2004, 10:52 AM
Annie-Xmas Annie-Xmas is offline
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People often use too much detergent to rinse out. Try doing a washload with no detergent and see if thee are suds. They come from detergent left in the fabric.
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  #7  
Old 08-03-2004, 12:20 PM
ZipperJJ ZipperJJ is online now
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I think I always use too much detergent. I use the liquid kind and fill the cup up to "the line" or even higher no matter what size load I'm doing (often medium or smaller). I haven't had any problems so far, in 15 years or so.
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  #8  
Old 08-03-2004, 12:35 PM
NutMagnet NutMagnet is offline
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I recently washed my hockey team's jerseys. We have one of those low-water-usage front loaders. I didn't know it was low-water usage and used about a half-cup of liquid for each half of the jerseys. I happened to look at the second load during the wash cycle. Soap out the wahzoo!

I figured WTF, as the boys work up a sweat they'll be followed down the ice by a trail of bubbles.
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  #9  
Old 08-03-2004, 01:28 PM
Adoptamom_II Adoptamom_II is offline
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If you accidentally put in too much detergent and want to get it all out, run a second rinse with 1/2 - 1 cup of white vinegar. The vinegar smell will not stay in your clothing.
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  #10  
Old 08-03-2004, 03:09 PM
spingears spingears is offline
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Your laundry detergent cost will double!

An extra wash and/or rinse, the cost of water and electricity which should be minor.
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  #11  
Old 08-03-2004, 04:20 PM
Flander Flander is offline
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I would imagine having detergent residue on your clothes wouldn't be great for your skin, especially if you're sweating. I can remember a few occasions long ago where I've broken out in a rash because of this.
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  #12  
Old 08-03-2004, 04:36 PM
fortytwo fortytwo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flander
I would imagine having detergent residue on your clothes wouldn't be great for your skin, especially if you're sweating. I can remember a few occasions long ago where I've broken out in a rash because of this.
Yes, that's my problem too. Even using less than the recommended soap powder/liquid (the manufacture's would like you to use as much of their product as possible) I still do a double rinse.
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  #13  
Old 08-03-2004, 04:52 PM
kniz kniz is offline
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Few of you will care about this, but just in case. If where you are washing has a septic tank, the extra detergent will collect there and cause lots of problems.*

* Like toilets backing up
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  #14  
Old 08-03-2004, 05:07 PM
bughunter bughunter is offline
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I think most people use too much detergent for normal laundry soilage to begin with. The laundry soap people are going to print the instructions for heavily soiled laundry so that they don't get complaints or lose customers.

Try using half the amount called for on the box/bottle for clothes you just wear to the office. You'll see.
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  #15  
Old 08-03-2004, 07:09 PM
Kat Kat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZipperJJ
I think I always use too much detergent. I use the liquid kind and fill the cup up to "the line" or even higher no matter what size load I'm doing (often medium or smaller). I haven't had any problems so far, in 15 years or so.
Depending on what type of washer you have, a smaller load might actually have less detergent build up. Some washers will fill up with more water when there's less clothes (because they fills to a certain total volume, instead of a adding a fixed volume of water) and the extra water will dissolve more soap.
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  #16  
Old 08-03-2004, 08:59 PM
ftg ftg is offline
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Another long term consequence of using too much detergent is that soap residue can build up in the washer in all sorts of unfortunate places. In my machine, there is an overflow reservoir near the drain pump to handle excess suds so that the pump doesn't suck air/bubbles. My reservoir appears to be quite scummed up due to the long drain times and I'll have to suck* it up and take the machine apart soon. (Which I can't do unless I move the gas dryer out and a bunch of other "difficult working space" issues.)

Just to echo many others, the amount given on the box is far, far more than needed for most clothes. A Consumer Reports test done a couple years ago found no difference in cleaning between using no detergent and using the suggested amount for lightly soiled clothes. So use a tiny amount for slightly dirty clothes and half the label amount for truly dirty stuff.

Your machine will be happier in the long run.

*NPI
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  #17  
Old 08-05-2004, 07:36 AM
Annie-Xmas Annie-Xmas is offline
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Running an empty machine with a gallon of vinegar should remove most of the soap scum from the machine. Do it every six months.
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