HE Washers and Bleach
Q. Your website says to use 3/4 of a cup of Clorox to disinfect laundry, but my HE machine is marked “1/3 cup max” in the plastic dispenser drawer for bleach. How can I properly disinfect?
A. Our recommendation is always/has been 3/4 cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach for disinfecting clothes. This was based on using a top loader washer where the consumer has several options for adding the liquid bleach (directly with the detergent before the clothes, to the liquid bleach dispenser or diluted and after ~5 minutes of the wash cycle, etc.).
The HE washers created a whole new laundry world. In order to use liquid bleach, the consumer is at the mercy of the liquid bleach dispenser designer and the point in the wash cycle that they have chosen to add the product. Unlike the old top loaders, the HE washers wait until much later in the wash cycle (or at one of the early rinse cycles, depending on the manufacturer) to dispense the liquid bleach. Since more cleaning has been completed, they believe there is less of a need for the full dosage and thus the smaller sizes for the dispensers. The 1/3 of a cup later in the cycle may be enough for you to achieve your goal. Unfortunately, I don’t know how to add more, so my only caution would be to not over pack the washer when doing whites in order to get the best result.