Though it might be a bit embarrassing to admit, we have all put laundry detergent into the wrong slot at least once before. If you have done this you might be wondering what happens if you put detergent in the wrong compartment. Should you wash your clothes again? Should you clean out the detergent tray? Will there be any damage to expect, to either your washing machine or your clothes, or even both?
Our detailed guide will go through every one of these questions for you to tell you everything you need to know about putting detergent in the wrong compartment in your washing machine!
Will Putting Laundry Detergent in Wrong Compartment Cause Damages?
Putting laundry detergent in the wrong compartment–say, in the fabric softener compartment–will not cause any damage to your washing machine or ruin your clothes in any way. But since fabric softener is added at the end of the wash cycle, the laundry detergent you put in that compartment will be as well, which means that you will want to run your clothes through another wash cycle to ensure that they are cleaned thoroughly and properly.
If you put laundry detergent into the bleach compartment, there are also no damages to worry about. But since bleach is released into the wash during the first rinse, instead of at the beginning the way detergent is, you will want to run your clothes through another wash cycle to ensure that they are cleaned thoroughly and properly.
Will Putting Laundry Detergent in the Wrong Dispenser Damage My Clothes?
Putting laundry detergent in the wrong dispenser will not damage your clothes at all. But you will most likely have to run your clothes through another wash cycle to make sure that they are thoroughly and properly cleaned.
For instance, if you accidentally put laundry detergent in the fabric softener compartment the detergent will then be released near the end of the wash cycle, as fabric softener usually is. This could leave behind residue, and your clothes may not be properly cleaned.
What Happens If You Put Laundry Detergent in the Bleach Dispenser?
If you put laundry detergent in the bleach dispenser, nothing bad will happen. The laundry detergent will be dispensed during the first rinse, as bleach generally is, and will wash your clothes but you might want to send them through the cycle again just to make sure that they are thoroughly cleaned.
The reason for this is because bleach and laundry detergent are released at different points during the wash cycle. Laundry detergent is released at the beginning, during the pre wash stage. If released any later–say, from the bleach compartment–there may not be enough time for the detergent to fully dissolve and properly clean your clothing.
What Happens If You Put Laundry Detergent in the Fabric Softener Dispenser?
If you put laundry detergent in the fabric softener compartment, nothing bad will happen. The laundry detergent will be dispensed near the end of the cycle, as fabric softener generally is, so you will want to run your clothes through another wash cycle to ensure that they are cleaned thoroughly and properly.
The reason for this is because there will not be enough time between when the detergent is released and when the wash cycle ends to guarantee that the detergent was correctly dissolved. This could mean that the detergent has left behind some residue on your clothing or that your clothes were not properly cleaned.
Can You Remove Detergent from the Wrong Compartment?
You can remove detergent if you have put it in the wrong compartment. It requires removing the detergent tray or box right from the machine which is relatively easy to do on most washers (for help with this, consult the user manual that came with your washing machine!).
Once you have removed the detergent tray, you can rinse it out and clean it with water, dry it, and then put it back in. And then you are all set!
Should You Wash Your Clothes Again?
If you put detergent in the wrong compartment you should probably wash your clothes again, just to make sure they are cleaned properly and that all of the detergent was thoroughly rinsed away.
What to Do If You Put Detergent in the Wrong Compartment?
If you have put laundry detergent in the wrong compartment, the best and easiest thing to do is to either run your clothes through their usual cycle or a shortened one if you are low on time. Once they are finished, the next step is to wash these same clothes again to make sure that they are totally cleaned and free of any residue from the detergent.
How Do You Know Which Compartment is for Laundry Detergent?
To figure out which compartment on your washing machine is for laundry detergent there are a few things you can do. If it does not say right on the compartment itself, or if it has worn off, you can easily check the manual that came with the washing machine. If you do not have the manual for whatever reason, you can do a quick search online for the model of your washing machine and find it that way!
Putting laundry detergent into the wrong compartment on your washing machine has happened to all of us at least one time or another, and it is nothing to be worried about! There is no damage to be concerned about, not to your clothes or your washer, and fixing this mistake is easy. You can either run your clothes through their regular wash cycle again or consult your washing machine’s manual to remove the detergent tray and clean it out.
To make sure this accident doesn’t happen again, simply consult your machine’s manual to figure out which compartment is the right one or conduct a quick online search for your machine’s model!
Jamie is the Founder of My Home Dwelling. He is a homeowner and enjoys sharing his homeowner tips with others. He has real estate experience working as a new home construction Realtor. Jamie has worked on numerous residential construction sites helping with interior and exterior renovations. He loves refinishing furniture, DIY home projects, and sharing his knowledge online.