What is HE detergent? How do you use it?

HE Detergent: What It Is and Why You Need It


HE detergent is made for HE washers

By now, you’ve most likely heard of HE detergent. What’s all the hype about? Should you really be using it? The short answer is: yes. If you own a high-efficiency washer, you should use HE detergent. (Even if your washer doesn’t require HE detergent, you can still use it for a good clean.)

But why — and how? Like your young athletes who perform best when they’re fueled with the right, healthy food, your high-efficiency washer works at peak performance with HE detergent. There are a few tips you should know to get the most out of both your washer and detergent. 



How do you know it's HE detergent?



How do you know it’s HE?

Look for this symbol to ensure the detergent is made for your HE washer.

What does detergent do?

Creates suds to help break apart stains and release soils.

Suspends stains, soils and dyes in water so they’re not redeposited on clothes.

Freshens clothes to keep them looking their best.

Why you should use HE detergent with a high-efficiency washer.




The HE formulation

High-efficiency washers are designed to use low water levels to get clothes clean. That’s why if you use regular detergent in an HE washer, it produces too many suds. This could potentially lengthen the wash cycle, affect the cleaning performance or overflow the machine.

You can use HE detergent in a regular washer.
Too much water dilutes HE detergent

HE detergent to the rescue

Low sudsing and quick dispersing, HE detergent is specially formulated to work in low water levels. Consult your owner’s manual for the recommended detergent amount. Usually 2 tablespoons.

But can you use HE detergent in a regular washer? Yes! There might be fewer suds, but you’ll still get a good clean. Because there’s more water in a regular washer, however, you’ll need more detergent — usually about 1/4 cup for a normal-sized load.

Care Tip

Think about washing your hands

If you use too much water, you’ll dilute the soap before it can clean your hands.

Laundry 101

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

Mixing powder and liquid detergents in the same dispenser may clog the dispenser.

Use softener dispensing agents in your HE washer only if your use and care guide recommends them.

Reduce the amount of water softener you use.

Care better with HE

If you’re looking for a new high-efficiency washing machine, Whirlpool brand can help. Shop our washing machines to find the right HE model for your family, or learn more about the innovative washer features that can help you juggle laundry day with just a little more ease.

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