Laundry liquid cap

How Much Is a Capful? (For Cleaning & Laundry)

A capful can vary greatly depending on the brand of detergent or fabric conditioner you use, but there are a few ways to narrow down exactly what a capful should be.

What Is a Traditional Capful?

A traditional capful of laundry liquid is 35 ml. This is the amount of laundry liquid a front-loading washing machine generally needs to perform well.

However, there is no official definition of a capful, and capfuls are often as small as 30 ml or as large as 40 ml.

Many bottles have caps that can be deceiving. It can be confusing to figure out if a capful is the full cap or if there are lines within the cap that will indicate how much of the cap you should fill with liquid. Some people believe that manufacturers do this on purpose to encourage us to use too much laundry liquid, so make sure you’re not going over the lines inside the cap!

If you don’t have a laundry dosing cap, you can work it out using a measuring jug or a tablespoon. One tablespoon is equal to about 15-20 ml, so two tablespoons would be a capful in most cases. One tablespoon would be roughly equal to half a capful.

Laundry liquid with cap on

Is There Such a Thing as Too Much Detergent?

It is important to understand exactly what a capful is for your detergent because if you’re using too much it can be detrimental in several ways.

Too much detergent can be much less cost-effective in the long run, as you would go through your detergent and fabric conditioner way faster than necessary and could be using up to double the necessary amount of liquid.

Adding more detergent than required can also create more suds than needed in the machine, which can cause a residue to be left on your clothes at the end of the cycle, especially if you use a shorter cycle length.

Finally, if your clothes are coming out of your machine feeling starchy or stiff, it’s likely because you are using too much detergent. Try halving the amount of detergent you are adding and see if you notice a difference in how soft your clothes feel after your next wash.

Pouring laundry liquid into cap


A capful usually measures 35 ml in laundry liquid, but it can be as little as 30 ml or 40 ml.

Look closely inside the caps of the bottles and see where the lines are within them, so you’ll know how much liquid to use depending on the specific size of your load.