You put everything in order, but the bath towels, hand towels, or any others still get hard after washing. You probably suppose the problem is in the machine. But why do front loaders make towels hard?

How does the load side make such a huge difference? Is it because of the machine, or are you doing something wrong?

If you continue this way, millions of questions will come to your mind. There might be multiple reasons for the stiff towels, so let’s see what the culprits for stiff towels are.


Why Do Front Loaders Make Towels Hard?

One of the first reasons why front loaders make towels hard is because they keep tumbling instead of floating in the water. Another reason might be improper rinsing. If the clothes are not rinsed well, the detergent residues will stay on the towel and make it stiff when dry.

The front-load washing machine uses high power to wash and drain the loaded clothes, which might result in overstretching them. Since the side loaders have horizontally placed drums, it is also possible for the towels to get hard because they are not immersed well.

Another reason might be the hard water. Hard water has higher mineral content, which is unsafe not only for people but might be so for the clothes and house appliances that use water as well.

In this case, you can either use some water softener solutions or place a water softener system in the whole house.

Stiff Towels – Most Common Causes and Solutions

Front-load washing machine drum position

Front-load washing machines have the drums placed horizontally. When filled with water, it doesn’t soak the clothes equally, which is why it keeps spinning them.

The towels stretch and drain unequally, which might be why they are hard and stiff. It might be best to use a gentler washing cycle, higher temperature, and lower spin level to fix this issue.

Read more: Why Is My Washing Machine Drum Dropping?

Detergent residues

Another reason why your towels are hard is the detergent residue. This might happen if your washing machine doesn’t properly rinse the towels or you use too much detergent.

You should know that adding more detergent won’t make your clothes clearer. It might only stick among their fibers and make them hard.

To fix this issue, you should use smaller amounts of detergent and run an additional rinse cycle. The additional rinse cycle will make you ensure the towels are entirely rinsed and free of detergent residues.

Hard water

Hard water might be another culprit for hard towels. Hard water might ruin the color and appearance of your towels, even making them hard and scratchy on the skin. The minerals present in hard water can stick to the towel and make it hard when dry.

To fix this issue, you might need to soften the water. The first option is to add white vinegar to the drawer dispenser and run a hot cycle. White vinegar acts like a fabric softener and might neutralize the hard water minerals.

Another solution is to install a water-softening system. This is a big and worthwhile investment for everyone facing hard water stains and other water issues.

Line drying

Line drying is an inexpensive and environment-friendly option for drying clothes. Yet, it might also be a reason why your clothes and towels are hard and stretched.

When you hang the clothes on the line, they stretch because they are heavier when wet. After they dry out, they get an unpleasant texture and might lose their original shape.

To fix this issue, you should either shake them before hanging them on the line or dry them in the machine for a couple of minutes after they dry on the line.

Most drying machines have a softening effect on the clothes because they use high fan temperatures.

Also read: Why Do Washing Machines Shake Like Crazy?


Front-load washing machines have different washing performances because their washing tub is placed horizontally. The clothes tumble during the washing cycle, which may lead to making them hard and unpleasant to the skin.

So, why do front loaders make towels hard? The mentioned causes should have helped you find out why front loaders make towels hard.

Now you’ve got the solutions, and hopefully, you can solve that problem easier.