What Happens When You Use Regular Detergent In A HE Washer

Are you curious to know what happens when you use regular detergent in a HE washer other than using a HE detergent?. High-efficiency (HE) laundry detergents are detergent or laundry products like stain removers or fabric softeners with the HE symbol.

These detergents are prepared to be used in high-efficiency washing machines like front load washers as well as top load washers.  HE detergents are known to deliver an optimal clean in low water levels. You should always use HE detergent If you own a high-efficiency washer.

What Happens When You Use Regular Detergent In A HE Washer?

What happens when you use a regular detergent in a he washer

Do not use regular detergents in a high-efficiency washer. Using regular detergent in an HE Washer is like putting regular gas in a car that requires petroleum.

Bear in mind that High-efficiency washers work at peak performance with HE detergent. Therefore, regular detergent is not designed for the small amounts of water used by He detergents, Only HE (high efficiency) detergents should be used.

High-Efficiency machines require low sudsing detergents and if a regular detergent is used all those suds might not rinse completely from your clothes and washer. Using any other kind of detergent in a high-efficiency washer will not only confuse your washer cycle and stop the machine from washing.

More so, using regular detergent in an HE washer could also lengthen the wash cycle, affect the cleaning performance or overflow the machine. Hence, this could cause mechanical problems over time.

Read Also: Can I Use Regular Fabric Softener In My HE Washer?

How Do You Know If The Detergent Is HE?

While you are at the store shopping for laundry detergent, look for the HE symbol on the container or product you are buying. It’s usually in small sign “h” and “e” in a circle.

What To Do If You Used The Wrong Detergent In A HE Washer?

Did you accidentally use a regular detergent in your HE washer?  Well, do not panic. Follow these practical steps to minimize any effects.

  • Cancel the current wash cycle
  • Restart the HE washer and choose a Spin cycle
  • Follow with a spin cycle to take out all regular detergent suds, using cold water
  • Begin a new wash cycle with HE detergent and cold water

Can I Apply A HE Detergent In A Regular Washer?

Yes, since regular washers use more water, you’ll need to use more HE detergent per load than you would need to use in a high-efficiency washer.

Read Also: Can I Put Fabric Softener in the Bleach Dispenser?

How To Maintain Your HE Washer

How to maintain a HE washer

As with any home appliances, regular maintenance will go a long way in improving the performance and longevity of your HE washer.

  • Replace bad water hoses
  • Always move the machine from the wall to avoid the hose from kinking
  • Keep the machine level
  • Clean the lint filter to help your washer run efficiently
  • Wash the washing machine with washing machine cleaner
  • Prevent musty odors and mildew
  • Measure your detergent
  • Do not overload the machine
  • Add a drip pan underneath your washing machine to prevent floor damage

How Much Detergent Should I Use In HE Washer?

The detergent amount should account for the size and number of the load of clothes you are laundering. The smaller the load, the less detergent you use. If the load is heavily soiled then you may need to use more detergent.

However, always consult your owner’s manual or detergent manufacturer’s recommendations to better understand the proper detergent amount for your washer model.

Read Also: Can You Put Baking Soda In HE Washer?

Best HE Laundry Detergent 2021

All laundry detergents claim to get rid of stains, whiten, brighten colors, and generally just be “new and improved,” therefore, it’s difficult to know which brand works best.

That’s why we decided to put them through such a rigorous gamut of tests to know the one to go for. So, based on our testing, here are our 12 top laundry detergent of 2021

  1. The Best Liquid Laundry Detergent: Persil Proclean + Stain Fighter Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  2. The Best Single Dose Laundry Detergent: Tide 3-in-1 Laundry Detergent Pods.
  3. The Best Powder Laundry Detergent: Tide+ Plus Bleach Powder Laundry Detergent.
  4. The Best Value Laundry Detergent: Kirkland Signature Ultra Clean Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  5. The Best Deep Cleaning Laundry Detergent: Tide Power Pods Hygienic Clean Heavy Duty 10X Laundry Detergent.
  6. The Best Laundry Detergent for Babies: Dreft Newborn Liquid Baby Laundry Detergent.
  7. The Best Laundry Detergent for Dark Colors: Woolite All Darks Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  8. The Best Liquid Laundry Detergent with Bleach Alternative: Tide+ Bleach Alternative Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  9. The Best Plant-Based Liquid Laundry Detergent: Gain Botanicals Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  10. The Best Plant-Based Laundry Detergent Pack: Seventh Generation Laundry Detergent Packs.
  11. The Best Woodsy-Smelling Laundry Detergent: Hero Clean Liquid Laundry Detergent.
  12. The Best Drugstore Laundry Detergent: CVS Total Home Laundry Detergent Packs.

Tips For Using A HE Washer

When using a high-efficiency detergent in your HE washer, there are a few practical guidelines to follow for optimal results.

  • Avoid mixing powder and liquid detergents in the same dispenser at the same time as this may clog the dispenser.
  • Only use softener dispensing agents in your HE washer if your use and care guide recommends them.

Read Also: Can I Use Fabric Softener As Detergent? Find Out

Difference Between Regular Washer And High-Efficiency Washer?

In Size

High-efficiency washers are bigger than a regular washer. This indicates you can wash more clothes less often, resulting in a more cost-effective and Eco-friendly laundry room.

In Tech

High-efficiency washers are smarter. Since they’re generally larger than regular models, high-efficiency washers often have smart sensors to sense the size of the load and adjust accordingly.

In Efficiency

High-efficiency washers are leaner. Since high-efficiency washer uses less and water, using a HE washer should lead to a cost reduction on your water bill, and because there is less water to heat, you may end up saving cost on your monthly gas or electric statement.

In Cost

High-efficiency washers are more economical in terms of energy and water usage; this saves you money over time. More so, the higher load capacity of HE washers also means that you require less detergent and fabric softener, which will save you money in the long run.

In Detergent

High-efficiency washers require special detergent known as high-efficiency detergent and not any regular detergent. High-efficiency detergents are low sudsing, so they work best with High-efficiency machine.

These kinds of washers use lower water levels and a tumbling washing motion to clean your clothes, while regular detergents are generally too sudsy for the task.

Read Also: How To Use Oxiclean in Front Loader


Having known what happens when you use regular detergent in a HE washer. It is important to use a High-efficiency detergent in a HE washer since it uses less energy and less water to wash larger loads.

However, to get the full benefits of an HE front-loader and to extend the life of the machine, using the right kind of laundry detergent is a must since these washing machines have given back time and money into the hands of their owners.

If you have any questions or know more about what happens when you use regular detergent in HE washer, kindly share with us in the comment section below.