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Washing Machine Where to Put Detergent

Are you scratching your head and finding yourself asking, washing machine where to put detergent? You're not alone!

Today we will tell you exactly where to put laundry detergent, explain the purpose of each compartment in the machine drawer, and share tips on properly loading detergent.

We'll also touch on when to put detergent directly in the drum. Plus, we'll discuss which detergent is best for your laundry needs.

Let's get started!

What this article covers:

Where to Put Laundry Detergent in a Washing Machine

Where you put laundry detergent depends on the type of detergent and your machine's design. Our research indicates that for liquid laundry detergent, some suggest putting it directly into the drum along with the dirty clothes.

When using powdered detergent, the approach varies slightly. For front-loading machines, there's usually a designated drawer where you can add the detergent.

Unlike front-loading machines that have a separate drawer for detergent, top-loaders typically require you to add the detergent directly into the drum.

In both top-loading and front-loading machines, the process of using sheet detergents is similar. You should place the detergent sheet directly into the drum of the washing machine before adding your clothes, though it is possible to use it in the tray.

This drawer is typically divided into different sections for various laundry additives, which we will discuss in the following section.

The Purpose of Each Compartment in a Washing Machine

Washing machines, particularly front-loaders, come with a drawer that's divided into several compartments. Each compartment has a specific purpose, ensuring your laundry comes out clean and fresh.

Before you can load the appropriate compartment, however, it's important to answer the question, “is fabric conditioner the same as detergent?” They are not the same. Fabric conditioner softens and freshens clothes, while detergent cleans them. And both are placed in separate compartments.

Let's break down what each compartment is for.

Main Wash Compartment

The main wash compartment is where you put the detergent for your regular wash cycle. This is the compartment you'll use most frequently.

You can also add water softeners, pre-soaking agents, bleach, and stain removers here if needed. This compartment is typically labelled as 'II' or '2'.

where to put detergent in washing machin

Fabric Softener Compartment

The fabric softener compartment is specifically for fabric softener. It's important not to overfill this compartment; there's usually a 'MAX' line to indicate the maximum amount you can add.

This compartment is often marked with a flower symbol, making it easy to identify.

Pre-Wash Compartment

The pre-wash compartment is used when you select a pre-wash cycle for heavily soiled clothes. It's where you add detergent for this initial wash cycle.

It's typically labelled as 'I' or '1' and is used in conjunction with the main wash compartment for a thorough clean.

How to Properly Load Detergent in a Washing Machine

Loading detergent correctly in your washing machine is crucial for achieving the best cleaning results and maintaining the efficiency of your machine.

Here's how to do it right.

When To Put Laundry Detergent In The Drum

For most top-loading washing machines and some high-efficiency front-loaders, you should add laundry detergent directly into the drum before loading your clothes. This method ensures that the detergent is evenly distributed throughout the wash.

It's particularly important when using liquid detergents or single-dose pods, as adding them to the clothes helps prevent detergent residue on garments. Pods should be placed at the bottom of the drum for optimal dispersion.

Our detergent sheets can be tossed in the drum with your load, no mess no fuss. This makes them a versatile and convenient choice, as they can also be used in the drawer. This brings use to the second washing scenario.

When To Put Laundry Detergent In The Drawer

Putting detergent in the drawer is suitable when using powdered detergents, liquid detergents, and washing additives like bleach or fabric softener in a front-loader. Simply fill the appropriate compartments before starting a cycle and the machine will do the rest.

where to put detergent in front load washer

The drawer comes into play when using a pre-wash cycle. Look for the pre-wash compartment so that the detergent is used only during the pre-wash and not during the main wash.

You may be wondering, what is the difference between detergent and disinfectant? Detergent is used for removing dirt and stains from fabrics, whereas disinfectant is designed to kill bacteria and viruses, and is not typically used in standard laundry cycles.

How Much Laundry Detergent To Use

The amount of laundry detergent you need largely depends on the size of your laundry load.

For a medium load weighing approximately 1.8 to 2.7 kilograms, you should use about 1.5 to 2 tablespoons of detergent (if it's a regular concentration). Our findings show that for larger loads around 2.7 to 3.6 kilograms, you should increase this amount to 2 tablespoons.

While it might be tempting to use more detergent for dirtier clothes, it may be better to pre-wash instead. Based on our observations, excess detergent can leave residue on clothes and in the machine.

What Detergent Should You Use?

When it comes to choosing a laundry detergent, Activated Eco's laundry detergent sheets stand out as a highly effective and eco-friendly option. These sheets are designed to simplify your laundry routine while being kind to the environment.

detergent washing machine

They are pre-measured, which means you won't have to deal with the hassle of measuring detergent for each load. This not only saves time but also ensures that you use the right amount of detergent every time, preventing waste and ensuring optimal cleaning efficiency.

The sheets are suitable for general everyday washing. One sheet is enough for an 8.5kg load. For heavily soiled items, you can use 1.5 to 2 sheets, and for smaller loads, simply cut or tear a sheet in half.


In this guide, we've explored the ins and outs of where to put detergent in your washing machine, whether you're using a front-loader or a top-loader. We've also detailed using liquid, powdered, and innovative sheet detergents, like those offered by us here at Activated Eco.

Our laundry detergent sheets are a standout choice for those seeking an effective, eco-friendly laundry solution. Their pre-measured nature eliminates guesswork, ensuring you use just the right amount of detergent for each load.

As you continue your laundry journey, remember the tips and tricks we've shared. Give Activated Eco's laundry detergent sheets a try and experience the ease and efficiency they bring to your laundry routine.  

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