The efficiency of your washing machine and the quality of wash depends greatly on the type of detergent you use for washing. Top loading, front loading, automatic, semi-automatic- these different types of washing machines work differently and therefore require different types of detergent. Today most washing machine manufacturers are trying to improve washing technology to use less water and energy.
The main difference between top loading and front loading washing machines is how the clothes are placed and washed. A top loading washing machine has a lid on top and in the centre of the tub is a device called an agitator. The agitator’s job is to swirl clothes through the soapy water. A front loading washing machine has a door on the side of the machine and has no central agitator, instead using gravity and side-mounted paddles to agitate the clothes.
A front loading washing machine is gentler on clothes and generally quieter to operate. Instead of the agitator grabbing clothes and thrashing them, the paddles of a front loading washing machine gently pick up the clothes and allow them to drop into the soapy water. The dirt is still removed by an agitating action, but gravity does most of the work. Gentler agitation can extend the lifespan of your clothes significantly. Another advantage of a front loading washing machine is its water and detergent usage. A top loading machine must use enough water to cover the highest level of the clothes. A front loading washing machine only uses enough water to cover the lower third of the tub. It also uses less energy.
Why must you use special washing detergent?
Detergents designed for front loading washing machines use a lower sudsing formula, and are meant to release different cleansing agents at different water temperatures. Soap foam will prevent the clothes from tumbling and striking the inside of the basket as they tumble. This is the only mechanical agitation that your clothes will see in a front-load machine. Admittedly, much of the cleaning action in today’s detergents is enzymatic, but some agitation is beneficial. The low water use also means a regular detergent will be too concentrated in a front-load machine.
Too much suds will prevent a front-load washer from accurately sensing the water level in the machine. This condition can cause a fault code. Some machines when detecting SUDs will drain and refill with fresh water until the code is cleared. Yes, it really is important to use the correct detergent for your machine. Using a lesser amount of the regular stuff in a front-load machine will not get the clothes clean. Using more will cause problems. Using low-suds detergent in a top load machine may not cause any problems, though the clothes might not get clean because the detergent is far more diluted than its designed for.
Make sure that you use the right detergents and right quantity of detergents for optimum usage.