Can all washers use high-efficiency detergent?

By: Emilie Sennebogen

High Efficiency Detergent

You may notice when you buy your energy-efficient washer that it recommends a high- efficiency (HE) detergent. This is a specially formulated cleaner that allows it to work with less water than a traditional detergent. HE detergents are manufactured to create fewer suds, so using a regular detergent in your HE washer can prevent the clothes from rinsing properly -- turning you into a sudsy mess the next time you're caught in the rain. What's worse, regular detergent can even trigger error codes on that high-tech machine of yours. And buildup from excess suds may lead to a visit from your local repairman. Take it from our personal experiences -- it's an expensive call to make.