These detergents are formulated to be used in high efficiency washing machines like front load washers. They are low-sudsing and quick dispersing for use in low water volume machines. HE detergents hold soil in suspension so it is not re-deposited onto clean clothes. Using a traditional laundry detergent will produce too many suds that will interfere with the tumbling action HE washers use to clean clothes.
HE Detergents can be used in regular washers but will not produce the usual amount of suds. Liquid HE detergents can be used as a presoak or pre-treater.
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