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How to Dissolve Liquid Fabric Softener in Water Pipes

Beverley Gee

Low-temperature washing can cause liquid fabric softener and detergent to remain undissolved in washing machine outlet pipes. Eventually they will form a slimy substance, which may block drains, either partially or completely. Strong drain cleaner cannot be used in a washing machine and is not recommended for plastic pipes. Natural cleaners can solve the problem and are environmentally-friendly at the same time.

Washer drains can become blocked by undissolved conditioner and detergent.
  1. Clear the blockage with seltzer tablets. If you have access to the pipe, drop three seltzer tablets down, followed by a cup of vinegar. Give the solution a few minutes to work, then pour down very hot water. If you are unable to access the pipe, proceed to Step 2.

  2. Pour ½-cup of baking soda and ½-cup of vinegar into washing machine drum. Run the machine on its hottest setting. The resulting fizzy chemical reaction should clear the pipes of undissolved fabric conditioner and powder. If the blockage remains, repeat the procedure or try a borax solution as follows.

  3. Mix two cups of borax with two cups of very hot water. Pour carefully down drain. This solution can also be run through the machine on the hottest setting.