Downy Pudding

So I was doing laundry this past weekend and when I went to pour Downy liquid fabric softener into my Downy ball, it had clumped together and came out in thick lumps, like pudding. Obviously something was wrong, I tried shaking it and tried pouring again, but didn’t seem do to anything. I was thinking about adding water to dilute it, but after reading the back, it said to never to dilute it with water.

Not knowing what happened or how to fix this (I still had about ~25% of the bottle left), I shot Downy customer support a email. Meanwhile, I opened a new bottle I had picked up from Costco.

Today I got an email reply:

Thanks for contacting Downy.

Our goal is to produce high quality Downy products that consistently delight our consumers and I’m sorry this wasn’t your experience, as it was thick. When storing the Downy April Fresh it can become thick or lumpy when exposed to extreme temperatures (either hot or cold). If it was frozen, it will appear much thicker (gel-like) and won’t return to normal consistency on its own. Best suggestion for storing the product is to store it at room temperature – in a cool, dry place and use it within one year. Please be assured I’m sharing your comments with the rest of our team.

Since your satisfaction means a great deal to us, I’m sending a replacement coupon by postal mail. You should receive my letter within the next 2-3 weeks.

Thanks again for writing.

Downy Team

Thinking back, the last time I did laundry before seeing this was probably mid December, right before I left for vacation. I did leave my thermostat at 50F, but maybe it got really cold? It probably has also been over a year since I started using that bottle of Downy liquid fabric softener. Living alone and doing laundry every 3 weeks means detergents lasts for quite a long time. Maybe Downy has an expiration date.

Anyway, it’s awesome they’re sending me a replacement coupon.

No, I did not try to eat Downy Pudding, but I did check to see if it was flammable. Unfortunately not. Would’ve been fun. ;p

61 Replies to “Downy Pudding”

  1. 2011 Texas summer was up to 120 in my garage. I had Downy Pudding too. So glad you posted this, I tried to re-hydrate it with no success. I now can toss it and start again. My giant jug was from Costco too.

      Add about a cup to one litre
      Or just slowly add till the consistency is desirable, add then shake the bottle

      1. Thank you so much! You saved my life and brand new bottle of fabric softener that had accidentally been frozen. THANKS!!!

        1. The vinegar trick has saved my butt with so many laundry issues. And it worked perfectly on my “Downy Pudding “. Thanks a ton

  2. Oh, man! I used the clumpy Downy on a load of whites. Now there are big and small blue spots on everything, including my washing machine. Whatever you do, do NOT use the clumpy Downy. It does not dilute into “regular” Downy. Glad to say that rewashing the whites took the greasy blue spots off.

  3. Great info. My husband wanted to dilute with club soda, baking soda…eek I checked here and now we are tossing ours. Going to buy smaller sizes in future. THANKS

  4. The internet is amazing! I have downy pudding and just typed it in to see if anyone else ever had this problem. Thankfully it isn’t just me!!! I have been trying to dilute it, but it GROWS!!! So I will just toss it out. I know I did not make it too hot or cold, but the retailer might have. Love Downy, but not downy pudding. (And I had been wondering why white/blueish spots have been on my clothes!!!)

  5. Yup, same thing for me with a very large jug of April Fresh Downy. This Downy has never been exposed to either hot or cold extremes, but is at least a year old, maybe 90% left because I bought 2 jugs at the time. I use Downy with no perfumes in it most often, and I use the different “smelly” types depending on what I’m washing.

    So that large jug has to keep for quite a while. I am saying it’s not necessarily temps that do it, but rather that it has a relatively short shelf life that’s not handy for somebody like me. Don’t know why I got 2 jugs of April Fresh, must have been a sale, but regardless I have never run into a shelf life problem with Downy before.

  6. Same thing just happened to me. I just opened a brand new bottle & thought it was just something with my bottle. The first load of clothes I washed with it no problems, but the second load there was a lot left on some of the clothes, so I’m having to rinse them again. Should have looked online before I used it!! Now to buy a new bottle.

  7. Thank you! I have used downy for 15 years and never had this problem before. We currently live in a really old rental that is poorly insulated and is very difficult to keep warm. I had no idea that temperature could effect the consistency of my downy. I, too, will toss my huge costco jug and start fresh. So sad that I couldn’t remedy this problem 🙁

  8. We had a power outage in this building (10-story highrise) back in December, right near Christmas, and my Downy got thick from the cold temperature in here. It just pours slow, but since our washers are the front-loading kind, the Downy gets distributed fairly well. I haven’t noticed any spots on my clothes, thank God.

  9. I hope Downey reads the info on this site. I have to throw out two large jugs of Downey due to it jelling. Nothing I tried, brings it back to a pourable liquid, such as laundry detergent. DOWNEY SUCKS! I WILL NEVER PURCHASE THIS PRODUCT AGAIN, EVER!!!!!!!!!!

  10. I purchased a small bottle of Downey a couple of days ago from a local supermarket. It
    is so thick it wont even pour from the bottle.

  11. Wow. I had no idea this was such a common problem.
    I’ve been using Downy for 30years and Zellers was having a closing out sale… So I grabbed 2 huge bottles. When it came time to use them both are so thick that they will not pour. I wonder what they have changed in the last couple years that has caused this issue. I know mine have not been subject to tempature fluctuations on my end but you never know about the stores you are buying the stuff from.
    Thank you internet.. I will quit struggling with the issue. Although I hate throwing something out that is this expensive there is no way to use it at all.
    So sad.

  12. I bought a medium size jug of Downy that was so thick that I couldn’t get water to mix with it even when added to the bottle and shaken. So I dumped it out into a square ice cream bucket, added hot water, stirred… and it wouldn’t mix in! So then I used my ‘stick blender’ which worked great, but even after each addition of water, the softener still remained too thick! I kept adding water until the bucket was full to the top! I had to leave it in the bucket because there was so much of it. Now I scoop out a small amount with a 1-cup measuring cup, add 2-3 times more water and mix it with my fingers before pouring it into my washer basket. Although it is a pain in the butt, I have quadrupled the amount of softener and my clothes smell great!

  13. I have 4 or 5 bottles I have to throw away because it’s so thick…….guess it doesn’t pay to stock up on Downy when it’s on sale and you have coupons……sucks…..instead of saving money I just threw it away……

  14. I too have had problems with the Downy pudding, Good name by the way. Bought it new at the store. Temperature is not an issue. By athe way when the trucks unload the products during the winter half the product on the trucks are frozen when they come in. I just pour a couple of tablespoons into a jar and add water, shake until mixed. Works great and lasts forever. Can’t afford to throw it out. I too will NEVER buy Downy Fabric softener again.. Two years now and still have one bottle to go.

    1. I’ve seen mixed replies about adding water. Some said it didn’t work. I too, have the LARGE bottles of Downy that have “curdled”. I believe my problem is a temperature problem as I keep mine on a shelf in the garage. We have crazy weather down here in Texas. Thanks for you comment.

  15. This is happening to me also.. I won’t buy this product again. A waste of money. I have almost a full bottle to throw away. AT first I thought maybe i had accidently gotten a bit of water in the bottle and maybe that is what “puffed it up”. Afer being extremely careful that the top was completely dry before putting it back on the bottle, I still ended up with Downy Pudding.

  16. I have now had 2 bottles of Downy turn to Pudding and temperature is not a problem. With so many other that this is happening to, I won’t be purchasing this product ever again.

  17. I thought I was the only one. I got 2 big jugs on sale at Costco or BJs and left one at Florida house and tookj one to /NC house. Both sit months at a time with Florida very hot and NC more cold than hot. Only the one in FL clumped. I will throw it out now after maby attempts to thin it. In this case it wasn’t shelf life or temperature. Something they put into the chemical formula, apparenyly to get customers to but smaller, more expensive bottles. May try Snuggle, although have used Downy april fresh since it came onto the market. This is the first time having this problem–still think the company reformulated it to make it ruin.

    1. If anybody out there he can hear this comment it is actually vinegar that will bring it right back to normal consistency

  18. I could not get to thin out.So,I will request a refund from Proctor & Gamble.They are USUALLY pretty good at customer complaints.

  19. I just discovered my downey had gelled…what a disappointment since I have used this product for years without any problems. I A picked it up at Costco only a couple weeks ago and thought about returning it but think the way to go is through the manufacture .

  20. I have 2 bottles of different scents, and both have gelled up, and they are inside my bedroom closet and is never that cold or hot. I was thinking of using distilled water to thin back out, but looks like that wont work either, as looking at these posts. Dead broke, what to do?

  21. Mine thickened also and is stored in the laundry room (inside home), temps never vary more than +/- 10 degrees from 72….I still use mine with no problems, I just measure and pour it into a 32oz cup, add very hot water, stir until mixed and is thin liquid with no lumps…add mixture to washer when rinse cycle is about half full with fresh water, works like new…but once this huge bottle is finished I will be buying the smaller bottles

  22. My daughter coupons a lot. We had about ten bottles of downy in our shed out back. It all thickened up. We added water to thin it. It didn’t work out very well. It thinned it OK, but it took 3 times as much to work. I just recently bought a new bottle, after fighting with this for over eight months.. The stuff works great. I had forgotten how much I loved it and even more how well it can work.

  23. No more Downy for me….my washer is a mess and I have 2 bottles of Downy thicker than Jello….the more I tried to thin it out the worse it got.

  24. Clearly DOWNY has a problem that they are not discussing. They need to put an expiration date on the bottle and a temperature warning.
    I have had three bottles with the same issue.

    1. I agree with you completely, Harry! I have used Downey liquid for years and never had this problem. I will be calling them on Monday… may be time for a change.

      Wonder if all the warehouses and methods of conveyance between the manufacturer and me are climate controlled? Doubtful….

  25. Don’t throw the Downey pudding out. Mix 1/2 cup of it with 1 tablespoon of distilled white vinegar, then shake well. It breaks down the lumps and no vinegar smell. Tried to water it down, but couldn’t ever get rid of the lumps. I’ve been doing this for months and got this advice from someone on-line. My clothes are April fresh and soft as they should be. Also, my bottle will last a long – long time.

  26. I’ll try the vinegar trick with the 2/3 full bottle I’ve been fighting with (no temp fluctuations!!) but the full bottle is going back to the store for a refund & I’ll buy a smaller bottle. I used to use Snuggle but after a trip home to Mom’s & experiencing that Downy Freshness on her towels, I had to switch! If I experience this again though, I guess Snuggle will have to do! Please fix this problem Downy People!!!

  27. Yep, just happened to me. I used the stuff a week ago and it was just fine. Tonight it’s like pudding. It’s been stored under my laundry room sink, neither particularly cold nor warm. Not sure I’ll ever buy Downy again.

  28. Last two bottles have been pudding….never had a problem before….purchased from Kroger in Carrollton, TX……bought the large 120 loads size….the formulation has to be different…..Downy needs to fix or take the product off the store shelves….

  29. Just happened to me for the second time! Calling it pudding is an understatement, it’s closer to spackle. I bought two 120oz bottles, one was fine and the other wasn’t. Both were stored in the same cabinet, neither exposed to hot or cold temps and had been purchased in the last couple months. This is ridiculous!! I couldn’t believe it happened to me twice, but was even more surprised to see how many others it has happened to also. P&G is getting a call from me after I post this!

  30. I found away around it – add regular vinegar a little at a time until it’s the consistency you want. It doesn’t change the smell. DO NOT ADD WATER, it makes it worse!

  31. I had the same problem. Finally finished 1.53L ultra downy free and gentle that had thickened greatly. Now have even worse problems with unopened 2.3L bottle of same from cabinet. I think this is P&G’s problem.

    1. Just called the product support number on the back of the newer big bottle and they are refunding me the cost of it. Very pleasant interaction. I think they realize that they have a problem with either shipping temperature control or something like that.

  32. Probably all fabric softeners will clump under same conditions. I have Snuggle, it has separated, watery on bottom, clumpy on top. Using a blender only made clumpy part a creamy mess with water still on bottom. Using vinegar as someone suggested did not work.

  33. I recently bought a large bottle of Downy and guess what?- open to use it today and I got very thick
    “pudding” as some mentioned above. I tried to pour it out, it was so so thick had to squeeze with both hands and got more than needed. This is the third large bottle I’ve gotten over the last year or two. Thicker than molasses! Each was bought at different stores. Costco’s, Target and Home Depot . I though you had changed the recipe – guess not. Not sure what to do with it, I diluted the first bottle and now have two large bottles left. UGH. I cannot any longer buy this softener.

  34. Wow…… I have been having Downy pudding problems for at least a year. Thank you Internet and all who have left comments. I thought it was my cold basement in the winter but it happens in the summer too, Being lazy, I tried using a pudding clump in the softener dispenser and each time it only partially liquified, if at all. Now, months later, the dispenser is entirely clogged. I am cleaning everything out including sludgy mold from the product. I will be pitching 2 large bottles in the trash! Buyers beware!!

  35. Wow, this basement over the summer gets cold but no colder than 60f. So why the pudding? This house goes through a lot of Downey, so I can only think that buying from these big retailers is the problem. I’m sure their trucks, their storage methods or warehouses are quite hot this summer. Since its September it has to be the reason. But I wonder about drop in temperature change…85f to 60f? Does that make the Downey turn to pudding?

  36. I have the same problem but I threw several of them out before reading this and I still have one left. It’s so thick its beyond the pudding stage.

  37. Oh how i wish i would have read this before adding water to my Downy Pudding! I absolutely hate wasting money but I guess it will go out with the trash. I may as well also pitch the Downy balls that, even with fresh Downy, will not open to release fabric softener.

  38. I also have several bottles of Downy pudding! What I did was get a large pasta pan and dump the entire bottle of Downy in it. Then take the empty bottle of downy and fill entire bottle with water and pour it into a pan-heat to boiling for 15 minutes! Let cool and it’s thin and now you have two bottles you can use

    1. Don’t throw it away-try this !! It works!! And It will make two bottles out of one! I have a lot of bottles from couponing and I didn’t want to waste it!

  39. Its not only Downy. I’ve got Gain and its 2 bottles that have been clumpy for me now. Both started off fine, but after a few uses, clumped up again. I think it maybe because they are old. We don’t know how long the stores have them in stock. It could be years by the time we buy them and by then its old and clumpy!

  40. My Downy also got thick or as other’s are saying Downy pudding. I called the 1800 # and they were pleasant and helpful. They are sending me a replacement coupon.

  41. I also have Downy pudding for the second time. From all the replies on here, it seems it will take a class action lawsuit against Downy before they fix the problem.

  42. Also have pudding downy. No freezing or extreme temp. and had less than a year. Was running when open, and a month later, pudding!!??
    Need to change brands, or go without .

  43. I currently am looking at Downey pudding. The fabric softener has been in the same place with no temperature change although it probably has been close to a month since I used it but I know that I have not had the bottle for a year. Glad to read this because I was going to try to rehydrate with water. Glad I didn’t.

  44. Yes just bought a new bottle. Been using Downey ever since it came out and never had this issue before. It’s so thick can’t pour and took a spoon to get it out. I’m frustrated!!! Brand new bottle !! Ugh

  45. I bought a two pack of Downy Wrinkle Guard off Amazon a couple of months ago. I didn’t open it and try to use it until recently. It is the consistency of lumpy pudding, and doesn’t even reach the rinse cycle water because it’s too thick and clogs up the dispenser. It has been kept in my laundry room (interior room) of my house that has never gotten below 68°F since the day it was delivered. This cost me $18, so I intend to contact Downy and get a refund or coupons for new bottles. My $18 isn’t going down the drain!

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