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how to use powdered detergent

how to use powdered detergent

Where to Keep Powdered Detergent and Why You’d Use It Instead of Liquid Laundry Soap

If you have a pile of laundry that needs to be cleaned but you find yourself faced with old-fashioned powdered detergent, you may be wondering what you should be doing differently to get your clothes clean. Needed. Luckily, the powdered stuff is just as easy to use as liquid detergent, and you might be doing your clothes a huge favor, depending on how dirty they are! In this article, we will learn about how to use powdered detergent in a top or front-load washing machine. We’ll also cover the pros and cons of using powdered soap in case you want to make the switch in the future.

[Edit]things you should know

  • Load powdered detergent into the little drawer that comes out of your machine. Pour the powder into the same container as the liquid detergent.
  • If you don’t have a container for detergent, load your laundry and pour the powder directly into the drum.
  • Powdered detergent is cheaper, better for the environment, and more efficient at cleaning dirt and soil stains than liquid detergent.
  • If your clothes are stained with grease, avoid powder—use liquid detergent instead.


[Edit]Pouring Powdered Detergent into the Washing Machine

  1. Measure your powdered detergent according to the directions. Refer to the detergent box to find out how much powder to use to get your clothes clean. Typically, you should use 1/3 cup (80 mL) of powdered detergent or less. Use the measuring cup that came with the detergent to weigh out the powder.[1]
    Use powdered detergent step 1.jpg
    • People overdo it with detergent – especially powdered detergent. Unless you’re washing completely soiled laundry, you usually don’t need more than 2 tablespoons (30 mL) of detergent.[2]
  2. Pour powder into the detergent drawer if you have one. Washing machines design their detergent compartment so that you can use either liquid or powdered detergent.[3] If you have a small dispenser-cabinet container for detergent, pour the powder into the same container you normally pour liquid detergent.[4]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 2.jpg
    • On most machines, the detergent compartment is the largest container in the drawer. It will often say “Detergent,” “II,” or “2” on the soap container. Other containers are for bleach and/or fabric softener.
    • Detergent compartments are very common on newer machines and front-loading washers. On top loaders, the containers are often inside the machine, on the rim of the drum.
  3. If you don’t have a drawer, pour the powder directly into the drum. If you don’t have a small detergent dispenser, simply load the machine with your clothes and pour the powder into the machine.[5]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 3.jpg
    • Most older machines and many top-loading machines do not have a separate compartment for detergent.
    • If you are using a powdered tablet, put it into a mesh fragile bag first and then set the bag into the machine. The bag will help the powder dissolve more evenly.
    • You can do this even if you have a small container for detergent. A lot of people do this because they are afraid of powder build-up inside the washing machine.
  4. Run your preferred washing cycle depending on what you’re washing. Don’t change your wash settings based on the type of detergent you’re using. Wash your clothes as you normally would. Set the load size, choose your soil level, and choose the water temperature before pressing the start button.[6]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 4.jpg
    • High Efficiency (HE) washers — which include most machines made after 2010 — automatically detect load size and set the water level accordingly.
    • Once your clothes are washed, toss them in the dryer or hang them to air dry.

[Edit]Advantages of powdered detergent

  1. Powdered detergent is much cheaper than liquid detergent. Powdered detergent usually costs around $0.10-0.24 per load, while liquid detergent can run you up to $0.47 per wash. That means the average family could save up to $70 a year just by switching to powdered detergent—and your clothes will be just as clean![7]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 5.jpg
    • It’s also very easy to measure powdered detergent accurately, which means you’ll save money by not wasting as much detergent.
  2. Storing powdered detergent becomes very easy. Liquid detergent is mostly water, which means you’ll need to keep a giant, heavy jug in your laundry room. Powdered detergent, on the other hand, is usually 100% pure detergent, and comes in a small, compact, and lightweight box. This makes this a great option if you’re short on space or live in a shared laundry building.[8]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 6.jpg
    • If you don’t have a washing machine at home or in your building, it’s super easy to take powdered detergent to the laundromat!
  3. Powdered detergent is much more effective for soil and dirt. Powdered detergents contain a handful of cleaning chemicals that most liquid detergents do not, which makes them better at removing soil, dirt, grime and grass stains. If you wish, you can also pre-treat these types of stains by cleaning them with powdered detergent and water.[9]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 7.jpg
    • While powdered detergent is fairly phenomenal, you’re better off using liquid detergent on grease stains.
  4. Using powdered detergent is better for the environment. Liquid detergent comes in a thick plastic container, while powder comes in a biodegradable box. On top of that, liquid detergents require a lot of clean water to manufacture, while powdered ingredients are pure cleaning ingredients. Using powdered detergent is pretty much useless if you’re trying to be eco-friendly.[10]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 8.jpg

[Edit]best practices

  1. Leave room for your clothes to move around. Packing your washing machine to the top makes it difficult to move clothes around, which can prevent them from getting clean. This is especially important with powdered detergent, as the powder can form lumps on clothes if they can’t move around.[11]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 9.jpg
  2. Choose a shorter wash cycle for smaller loads. There’s no point in wasting electricity and water for an entire cycle when you’re only washing a few items of clothing. If you’re only washing a few items, use the fastest cycle setting available.[12]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 10.jpg
    • A high-efficiency washer will automatically measure the water level, but they won’t artificially change wash times.
    • Most washing machines have a timer setting. You don’t need more than 20 minutes for a handful of items.
  3. Always read the label on your clothes to avoid damaging them. Those labels are not arbitrary. If you throw away something that needs to be hand washed, you will destroy it. Check the tag on your clothing to see if you need to use cold water, the delicate cycle, or if you can wash it using any setting you prefer.[13]
    Use Powdered Detergent Step 11.jpg
    • This is especially important for any clothing items that are made from organic materials, such as cotton or wool. You can really ruin the shape or feel of hand woven or natural materials.


  • Never mix powdered and liquid detergent. Mixing these two together will make a powdery cake and form kernels.[14]


  1. https://www.blombergappliances.com/media/documents/manuals/compact_laundry/WM77110NBL01_USER_MANUAL_en_US.pdf
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/wirecutter/blog/stop-use-so-much-laundry-detergent/
  3. https://www.lg.com/us/support/products/documents/WM3677_Manual.pdf
  4. https://inthewash.co.uk/washing-machines/where-to-put-washing-powder/
  5. https://www.the-sun.com/lifestyle/2693202/washing-powder-machine-drum-cleaning/
  6. https://www.bobvila.com/articles/washing-machine-settings/
  7. https://www.bobvila.com/articles/liquid-vs-powder-detergent/
  8. https://www.bobvila.com/articles/liquid-vs-powder-detergent/
  9. https://www.apartmenttherapy.com/powder-vs-liquid-detergent-37124579
  10. https://www.thekitchn.com/liquid-vs-powder-detergent-whats-the-difference-23438064
  11. https://www.bhg.com/homekeeping/laundry-linens/tips-checklists/how-to-load-a-washer/
  12. https://www.cnet.com/home/kitchen-and-household/washing-machine-settings/
  13. https://www.cleanipedia.com/gb/clothing-care/washing-symbols-explained.html
  14. https://www.cleaninginstitute.org/sites/default/files/assets/1/Page/HE.pdf


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