When To Put Fabric Softener In Washer? Types of Fabric Softeners

Helen Skeates
Helen Skeates
21 min read

Do you know when to add fabric softener to the washing machine? There are a variety of variables to consider and you’ll learn more about them as you continue to read this essay, my friends.

When the old washing machine has already completed its final rinse cycle, this is the point. For a contemporary machine, the crucial moment is when the process is initiated.

To many, adding fabric softener is a simple process. However, some people fail to remember this. It’s best to spend some time brushing up at the correct time rather than hurrying to add it all up. In the end, acquiring clean and soft garments is all about timing. Incorporating fabric softener into your wash is a simple and time-saving task. Getting the time perfect may make a big difference.

When Do You Add Fabric Softener to Washer?

When should you add fabric softener to your washing machine? Depending on the type of machine and the amount of memory, the timing must be just right. Fabric softener and bleach dispensers, as well as laundry detergent, can be found on the vast majority of modern washing machines. The washing machine controls the fabric softener dispenser in this dispenser. A simple reminder is all you need to remember when to refill the dispenser. After the washer has finished its final rinse cycle, some people like to get near to it and listen to the noise it makes.

When To Put Fabric Softener In Washer? Awesome Points To Consider! - Krostrade

Once that has occurred, add the appropriate amount of fabric softener before it is too late. Some people forget to put the fabric softener in the laundry because they are too far away from the machine. Because of this, we have dryer fabric balls and dryer sheets on the market.

What About Adding Fabric Softener With Washer But Without Dispenser?

To avoid a chemical reaction with bleach or laundry detergent, use fabric softener at a separate time interval in a washer without a dispenser. When it comes to washing clothes, fabric softener is the final step. There may be no more spin cycles remaining, so be careful with the number of cycles you utilize. That’s if you’re using soap and bleach, and a fabric softener is added.

The final spin can also be used, but the bleach eats everything up. If you don’t have dryer sheets or fabric balls on hand, this will be a quick and easy project. If you don’t have a dispenser, you’ll need to be quick. To avoid wasting precious time, avoid becoming overly forgetful. To further soften your textiles, you might look into different solutions.

In What Cycle Can You Put The Fabric Softener In Washer?

As a result, your washing machine should be equipped with an automatic detergent dispenser. Just remember to factor in the time it takes to add a chemical addition to the dispenser. Then it’s time to get started. It must be loaded correctly, and you must return to it after a period of time. However, you’ll have to rely on the machine’s memory to put fabric softener in the washing. Before using fabric softener, run your laundry through a final rinse cycle. As for other cycles, it won’t help because the fabric softener’s ingredients may be diluted.

What Is The Right Time To Put The Fabric Softener In The Front Loader?

When you’re ready to use the fabric softener, load it into the front-loading washer. To remove the fabric softener, simply pull out the drawer. Fill the softener to the top with water, then dilute it. If you don’t go above that limit, you can expect favorable results. Make sure that you don’t overfill it with fabric softener. If you don’t, you’ll have stains on your clothes for a long time before it goes away.

How To Use Fabric Softener?


What’s the deal with fabric softener, exactly? Use of fabric softeners in laundry has no real benefit. Many individuals use fabric softeners to make their clothing softer after they’ve been washed. Many individuals appreciate the additional layer of smell that fabric softeners provide to their garments. As a bonus, fabric softeners straighten garment fibers, making them easier to iron.

Towels are the most typical application of fabric softeners. (How do we know this? What do you see when you look at a Downy Fabric Softener bottle? Yep. Towels). Towels, by their very nature, wick away moisture, so when they are washed and dried, they come out rough, making the drying process less than pleasant. The roughness and static on the garments can be reduced with the use of fabric softeners.


When and how often should you apply fabric softener? Towels, as previously mentioned, benefit greatly from the use of fabric softeners. Fabric softener, on the other hand, should never be used while washing clothes for people with sensitive skin or when washing infant clothes due to the chemicals it contains. The scents in fabric softeners may also bother those who suffer from allergies, so keep that in mind.

We must be cautious! Because a good wash cycle would eliminate the chemical residue left behind by fabric softener, it is added to the rinse cycle rather than the wash cycle (the chemicals that make clothes softer). Also, avoid using fabric softener in your washing machine. They can accumulate muck and impair the machine’s performance over time.


Our long-awaited arrival has finally arrived. How do you utilize it? Whether or not it’s straightforward will be determined by the type of washer you have.

How to Use Fabric Softener - When Not To Use Fabric Softener

Is this a front-loader, or what? Dispenser or detergent drawer on your washer: Add the recommended amount of fabric softener to it. Make sure you’re using the correct dispenser for your fabric softener and laundry detergent by carefully reading the directions that came with it.

Bottom-loading? Simply drop the recommended amount of fabric softener into the dispenser of your top-loading washer (it’s usually on the center column of the drum) as you pour or place your laundry detergent on the drum and wash as usual. The fabric softener must be added after the washing cycle and before the rinse cycle begins if your machine does not have a dispenser.

The chemicals that fabric softener adds to your laundry can be replaced with natural alternatives. See if dryer sheets are a good fit for you. Wool dryer balls are an excellent substitute for fabric softener.

When Is It Right To Add Fabric Softener To The Top Loader?

You may be able to find fabric softener in an ancient washing machine’s top agitator. If you don’t see the softener label on the device, then you can’t know how much to put in. Upon completion, you’ll find that the machine has taken over the task. It’s best to use the dispenser that comes with other brands of machines. Take a few minutes before the final rinse cycle has started. You should never apply fabric softener directly to your garments. Make sure the fabric softener is adequately diluted before using and that it comes into contact with the water. Stains won’t be transferred to the clothing if you do it this manner.

Can You Just Put the Fabric Softener Directly Into The Washing Machine?

Yes, this is correct. Don’t worry about it if you have a manual or an automatic washing machine, as long as the dispenser can be opened correctly. But before you do anything further, make sure the machine is running properly by listening to the click. If the dispenser does not open when the machine expects it to, add the chemical manually. Before attempting this, make certain there is plenty water on hand. When should you use a fabric softener?

Types of Fabric Softeners

Liquid, sheet, and ball fabric softeners are all available. There are advantages and disadvantages to each design, and there are subtle differences between the various types of designs. The greatest ones for softening and refreshing sheets and towels are different than the best ones for refreshing garments. As a result, having all three forms of laundry detergent on hand can be useful. Before settling on a fabric softener for everyday use, weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each type.

Liquid Fabric Softener

Hand-pouring liquid softeners or using a dispenser on the machine are both acceptable methods of adding them to the machine. Fabric softener is often added by the machine during the final rinse cycle of the clothing. The softeners penetrate into the fibers of the fabric, resulting in softer clothing. Static reduction, fading and fuzz accumulation are all reduced by softeners’ ability to keep clothing from stretching out.

Liquids are the most expensive per load choice. When it comes to removing odors and smoothing clothes, however, liquid is superior to dryer sheets or balls. A silicone oil is used to make fabric softener. If a user pours softener directly over the fabric without first diluting the solution in water, the oils might discolor the clothing. Towels should not be treated with liquid softeners. A buildup of oils on the fibers of a towel might reduce its ability to absorb liquids.

A measuring cup is included with liquid fabric softeners to ensure that you apply the correct amount of softener for each load. The launderer must add liquid fabric softener during the final rinse if the machine does not have a specific fabric softener dispenser. As a result, uniform penetration of the fabric is ensured, and stains on clothing are minimized. If you’re looking for a way to cut down on the amount of ironing you have to do, liquid fabric softeners are a great option.

Dryer Sheets

Dryer sheets cost less per load and are less dirty than laundry detergent. Stearic acid, fragrances, and other compounds are applied to the woven sheets of fibers. Static cling is reduced more effectively with dryer sheets than with dryer balls. Portable and versatile, they don’t soften fibers as well as liquid softeners.

Because of the film left behind by dryer sheets, the dryer and lint filter might become coated with lint over time. The buildup of residue on the filter can make it more difficult to remove the lint from the cloth. Over time, more lint accumulates in the dryer as a result of this.

Dryer sheets, as opposed to liquid fabric softeners, can be used to freshen other parts of the house. Insert them inside shoes or place them in drawers and closets to help combat odors. Dust cloths made from used dryer sheets work great, too. It is advisable to use dryer sheets if you have to do laundry at a laundromat because of their convenience. Towel use is not recommended, however the sheets can be used for other purposes. Dryer sheets, like fabric softener, include oils that coat towel fibers and reduce their absorption.

Dryer Balls

Using dryer balls to soften laundry is an inexpensive and environmentally friendly option. Woolen scarves are the most common, but they come in a variety of materials and sizes. When it comes to dryer balls, wool is by far the most acoustically preferable.

Dryer balls provide the added benefit of expediting the drying process. Clothes and linens dry more quickly because to the balls’ constant agitation against the fibers. Despite their name, dryer balls don’t actually add any scent to your clothes. Essential oils can easily be added to the balls to offer a fresh scent to clothing and linens.

Using dryer balls instead of dryer sheets or liquid softeners is more expensive, but it’s the most eco-friendly option because they can be used again and again. Towels and linens can be dried more quickly with the help of dryer balls.

Our Top Picks

A variety of factors, including the benefits and drawbacks of each fabric softener type, went into the selection process for this ranking. All of these options will soften and maintain the fibers of your laundry. There’s a fabric softener here to suit your preferences, whatever they may be.

1. BEST OVERALL: Bounce Fabric Softener and Dryer Sheets

Dryer sheets made by Bounce are among the most widely used and highly rated fabric softeners on the market. Cost effective, they combat static and wrinkles while repelling lint and having a pleasant aroma. In addition, they’re suitable for use with HE (high-efficiency) dryers.

Because each box contains 240 sheets, these dryer sheets are a cost-effective option for keeping clothing fresh and silky. For an average load, the manufacturer recommends using two dryer sheets, which comes to less than 6 cents per load. Because of its portability, ease of use, and low cost, Bounce is a preferred choice. In addition, it softens garments and provides them a lovely aroma without being overpowering.

2. BEST VALUE: Heinz White Vinegar

When it comes to domestic cleaning, white vinegar is a “jack of all crafts.” It also acts as a natural softener for clothing. Laundry can be brightened, softened and odor-killed with the help of vinegar. There’s no need to worry about your clothes smelling like vinegar. The dryer’s heat will help eliminate the vinegar odor.

Vinegar, which costs around 5 cents for 14 cup, is inexpensive and flexible. For example, vinegar may be used for cleaning and cooking, thus adding fabric softener to its utility reduces the need for purchasing additional items. Distilled white vinegar should always be used in the washing machine. Similarly, tannins (natural plant dyes) found in cider vinegar can cause clothing to discolor.

Both white and colorful clothing can be cleaned using distilled vinegar, which is non-toxic. When it comes to softening towels, this is the finest method. It is possible to whiten light colors with distilled vinegar while keeping dark colors dark. In addition to removing mildew odors and softening clothing, this solution won’t cause product buildup in a washing machine. Infusing wool dryer balls with essential oils during the drying process can help mask the vinegar’s lack of fragrance.

3. BEST LIQUID: Downy Ultra Cool Cotton Liquid Fabric Conditioner

In terms of smelling clean and having silky-smooth clothes, liquid fabric softeners are the clear winners here. Some fabric softener scents, on the other hand, are excessively overpowering. There is just the right amount of smell and fabric softening in Downy’s Ultra Cool Cotton.

There is nothing overpowering about the “cold cotton” smell. With this product, static cling, stretching, and fading are all reduced to near-zero levels of concern. Dryer sheets cost less per load than liquid softeners. There are two-pack bottles of 51 fluid ounces of Ultra Cool Cotton fabric conditioner from Downy, which are reasonably priced. Using a single bottle for 60 loads of laundry will cost you an average of 11 cents per load. Additionally, the softener can be used with high efficiency washers (HE).

4. BEST DRYER SHEETS: Gain Dryer Sheets, Original

The aroma of Gain dryer sheets sets them different from the competition. Fresh, clean sheets infuse the laundry with a pleasant aroma. The scent isn’t overpowering. Citrus and amber notes fill the air with Gain Original. When the clothes come out of the dryer, the delicate scent should linger on them for at least a couple of weeks. On the box of Gain, the company is so convinced that their original aroma would be a hit with customers that they prominently advertise it.

Gain Original lowers static cling and minimizes wrinkles, just like conventional dryer sheets. Although the sheets are slightly more expensive, they still cost less per load than liquid softeners, which are more expensive than the sheets. Many Gain smell aficionados don’t just use the dryer sheets to refresh their clothes; they also use them to freshen their houses, cars, work boots, and furnishings.

5. BEST DRYER BALLS: Smart Sheep Wool Dryer Balls

Buyers looking for an environmentally friendly way to soften their laundry can look into Smart Sheep dryer balls, which are a soft and fuzzy way to freshen up a laundry routine. This pack of six dryer balls is made of 100% New Zealand wool and contains no chemicals or synthetics.

Smart Sheep dryer balls, a soft and fuzzy method to freshen up a laundry routine, are a good option for environmentally conscious buyers. There are no chemicals or synthetics in this pack of six New Zealand wool dryer balls.

How To Use Downy Liquid Fabric Softeners | Downy

6. SCENTED PICK: Downy Infusions Calm Liquid Fabric Conditioner

If you prefer the smell of clean clothes, you’ll love Downy’s Infusions collection of laundry detergents. Four distinct smells are available in the Infusion line: refreshing, calming, blissful, and romantic. There seems to be a preference for the serene aroma amongst these options. Lavender and vanilla bean are the main ingredients of Calm. It’s well-known that lavender and vanilla have calming properties, and it’s also thought that they can help individuals sleep better at night. The combination of these scents creates a calming aroma that is ideal for snuggling up.

Fabrics are protected from fuzz, fading, wrinkles, and straining using Downy Infusions, which can be used in high-efficiency (HE) washers. Users should only use it in the last rinse or via a dispenser because it can stain if applied directly to garments, like other liquid fabric softeners.

7. SENSITIVE SKIN PICK: Downy Nature Blends Fabric Conditioner

Because of their fragrance, scented fabric softeners have historically been avoided by persons with sensitive skin or allergies. With Downy’s Nature Blends fabric softener, however, it appears that great-smelling washing may be had without bursting out in hives.

Colors and parabens, which can irritate skin, are absent from Nature Blends, which are 70% plant-based. Coconut oil is used to soften and fluff the laundry in the mix. It’s also devoid of animal testing, making it a fantastic choice for eco-conscious customers. When it comes to fabric softener fragrances, the honey lavender aroma works great for individuals who like a more mild perfume. Nature Blends by Downy is compatible with HE machines.

8. ECO-FRIENDLY PICK: Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Liquid Fabric Softener

Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day fabric softener is made from plant extracts and essential oils, including cotton extract. If you’re looking for something a little more unique than cotton or the usual “clean” aroma, this is a terrific option. Garden fresh scents such as honeysuckle, basil, lemon verbena, geranium and lavender may be found in this collection of items. There are no parabens, phthalates, or chemicals derived from animals in this product. People with sensitive skin or allergies should like this product.

32 loads may be done with one bottle of laundry detergent. This selection is more expensive than other liquid softeners. Compared to other fabric softeners, this one is more difficult to use because of its thicker consistency. For proper dispensing, it may require dilution. It may be used in HE machines and is an environmentally beneficial method of removing odors from clothing.

FAQs About Your New Fabric Softener

Q. When do you put fabric softener in the washer?

During the final rinse cycle, add liquid fabric softener to the washing machine.

Q. What should you not use fabric softener on?

Microfiber, towels, and synthetics such as water- and flame-resistant garments shouldn’t be washed with liquid fabric softener.

Q. How do you clean a fabric softener dispenser?

Pour a mixture of hot water and liquid laundry detergent into the fabric softener dispenser to clean it. Afterwards, repeat the rinse cycle on the machine two or three more times.

It’s A Wrap!

Washing clothes with fabric softener is a simple task. Even yet, it’s not always easy because not everyone has a crystal-clear recall, and housework can easily divert their attention. When that happens, remembering to add the fabric softener at the appropriate time becomes more difficult. It’s nice to have a self-cleaning washing machine these days! You may also be interested in learning more about the effects of steam in a washer and the proper way to use bleach in a washing machine.

Helen Skeates

Helen Skeates

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