Washing machines are expensive, we all know that, but no matter how well you maintain them, there is no way to prevent a breakdown. Ultimately, there are a few things you need to be aware of to prolong its life.

Frequent usage of laundry detergent has a certain kind of impact on your washer; there is no doubt about that. Thus, is liquid detergent bad for washing machines?

If you are particularly concerned about that, this is what my years of experience with washing machines say.

Let’s get started and discover!

Is Liquid Detergent Bad for Washing Machines
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Is Liquid Detergent Bad For Washing Machines?

Liquid detergent is not inherently bad for washing machines, but over time, it may be.

However, it’s important to follow the recommended dosage and not exceed it, as using too much liquid detergent can lead to excessive sudsing and potentially cause issues with your washing machine. Always use a detergent specifically formulated for use in washing machines.

Moreover, front-load washing machines are most prone to this type of damage if you use too much detergent, as they are high efficiency and use less water and energy to clean clothes.

Potential Problems

Buildup in your washing machine 

So, is liquid detergent bad for washing machines? It depends on the type of washing machine and how you use it.

Liquid detergents can cause damage to your washing machine over time because they contain rendered animal fats that can clog lines and solenoid valves, which drip inside the washing machine over years of usage. 

A friend who works in service told me that detergent buildup is one of the most frequent causes of damage that people demand fixing.

It happens because they are completely congealed liquid detergents that need to be cleaned on a component level. Otherwise, it will start staining your white clothes.

Of course, on the market, there are many brands of detergents that claim to be made for front-load machines.

Unpleasant odor in the washing machine

As I mentioned earlier, using too much liquid detergent can cause a buildup inside your washer, leading to an unpleasant odor. This happens because it leaves a soap film behind that congeals in the drum. 

The excess detergent that clogs onto the insides of your washing machine provokes the spread of bacteria, accumulating a lot of dirt. 

This problem can be especially frequent in front-load washers because they require a minimal amount of detergent, even for bigger loads.

Harmful to the washing machine without using the appropriate product

There are certain liquid detergents only appropriate for specific washing machines. Since they come already pre-dissolved, they can damage the washer if they don’t correspond to your washer type.

Moreover, your clothes might not be washed well, and there might be liquid residue on the clothes and in the tub. This problem can also occur if you use the liquid detergent with the wrong program.

Read more: Is Salt Bad For Washing Machines?

Tips to Prevent and Remove Liquid Detergent Buildup 

Only use one or two tablespoons of detergent 

There is no doubt that liquid detergent is far more popular than powdered detergent. However, if you want to prevent your washing machine from getting clogged, you need to be careful when you measure it.

If you put too much detergent, your washer won’t be able to properly clean your clothes, and it will also cause buildup on both your clothes and the washer insights.

I recommend putting one or two tablespoons, even for larger loads.

Run a hot cycle with baking soda and vinegar

This is one of the most effective methods to clean the washing machine from detergent buildup. You should put half a dozing scoop of baking soda into the powder detergent section, fill the container for liquid detergent or softener with white vinegar, and then run the 95°C-degree cycle.

This combination will prevent bacteria from growing and act as a deodorizer in removing the modish smell from the tub.

Also read: Is Vinegar Safe For Washing Machine?

Wipe with homemade bleach and water solution

Make a spray solution using bleach and water; spray it around the rubber gasket in the entire rim of the washer. 

Wipe it with a clean cloth, or dip the cloth into the solution and clean it inside the tub. You will probably find a lot of buildup of mold/mildew, especially at the bottom of the gasket.

Let it sit for a couple of minutes. Meanwhile, take a dry cloth and thoroughly wipe the inside of the washer, including the door.

Once you are done with this, wipe out the gasket you had sprayed with bleach and make sure it is completely dry.


Is liquid detergent bad for washing machines? If you have carefully read the article, you now know the answer to this question.

While liquid detergent is not inherently bad for washing machines, it can potentially cause problems over time if not used correctly.

Excessive use of liquid detergent can lead to buildup and clogging, especially in front-load washing machines that use less water.

This buildup can result in an unpleasant odor and even damage the washer’s components. It is important to use the appropriate amount of detergent, typically one or two tablespoons, and choose a detergent specifically designed for your washing machine.

By following these tips, you can prolong the life of your washing machine and maintain its performance. So, I hope this article has provided you with a solution to your concern!