We recently had to have our Fisher & Paykel washing machine repaired, which wasn’t a cheap exercise, as it was just out of warranty. The repairman said that the problem was caused by a build-up of fabric softener in the machine, and that I should stop using fabric softener of any type. Do any Mums have something else I can use to soften fabrics, that won’t damage the washing machine?


Posted by no1ladydj, 22nd May 2014


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  • I use wool wash in every load but if it is a jumper knitted I would soak it in Lux flakes and if I do use fabric softner I never use the dispencer in the machine I mix it with water and add it straight to my washing


  • I’ve done two loads of washing today, and used a tablespoon of vinegar in the final rinse. Clothes were lovely & soft, no smell of vinegar, and the washing machine looks a lot cleaner too. Think I’ve found the answer to my problem. Thanks everyone.


  • Its amazing the gloop that builds up from fabric softener. I still use it as I like the smell it gives my clothes etc but I make sure I use a descaler cleaning agent monthly to get rid if it


  • i agree with the other mums, i have never used it, dryer softens things up if they get to crispy.


  • this works great and doesnt leave that build up in the washing machine i get it from safeways about $4 i think


  • Have you tried wool wash? I find that works well


  • Just don’t use softener. Clothes come out fine, all it really does is makes clothes smell nicer. But if you have a good washing powder they’d smell nice anyway.


  • I also don’t use fabric softener. Our clothes are fine straight off the line. Towels get a bit crunchy, but if it’s not to your liking chuck them in the dryer just for a few mins and they soften.


  • i don’t use it, and still find my clothes soft


  • I personally would stop using it. If you don’t use a hot wash to dissolve it


  • I’m a huge fan of baking soda, you can use it to soften your water and your clothes will be soft – dissolve it first, it’s also excellent for keeping your washing machine clean.


  • I don’t use fabric softener and never have! Have you washed without using it?


  • Had the same problem when we attached our washer to a grey water system and was told to use white vinegar instead and yes it works fine and stops static electricity in your clothes.


  • I like the idea of using the dryer for a few minutes after bringing clothes off the line, as it might save on ironing too, which is a job that I absolutely detest.


  • You don’t need to use a fabric conditioner at all.
    I use Method or earth products and neither of those contain conditioner and my clothes are still really soft and smell lovely.


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