Washing Machine Cleaning Tips: One of those cleaning hacks that might not occur to you until a musty smell emanates from your laundry room is how to clean a washing machine. Although it is supposed to do the opposite, a washing machine can be a place where germs grow. Consider this: Your washing machine works really hard to keep your home in order. Common things, from sweat-soaked workout clothes to seemingly oversized sheets and towels, can lead to a less-than-clean washer if you don’t keep up.
According to Alessandro Gazzo, director of content for Emily’s Maids, a Dallas-based house cleaning and cleaning service, “People still don’t know that washing machines need to be cleaned regularly.” Self-cleaning is not synonymous with “cleaning machine”, as you think. Because washing machines can become breeding grounds for bacteria, regular cleaning is essential. Hard water, as well as soap scum, detergent, fiber residue and fabric softener, can clog the drain, he adds. Also, if you don’t have the slightest idea how to clean a washing machine, mold can develop over time, which is not only gross, but can also make your laundry tub smelly. Gazzo suggests cleaning your clothes washer regularly and doing a deep clean every three to four months.
Tips for cleaning the washing machine
Keeping a washing machine clean is an essential task that many people neglect. After a while, dirt, grime, and leftover cleaner can build up inside the washer, causing an unpleasant odor and possibly even damaging your clothes. Cleaning your clothes washer can help extend its life, improve its upkeep, and ensure your clothes look like new.
At least twice a year, a top-loading washing machine needs to be cleaned. Mineral deposits can be avoided by cleaning the faucet every three months if you live in an area with hard water. Compared to standard washers, high-efficiency front- and top-load washers require more frequent cleaning (usually every month) and use significantly less water. If you have heavily soiled clothes or live in a hot, humid area (where mold will be more prevalent), you should clean your washer more often. Each dispenser should be cleaned every four to six weeks, in addition to the washer drum, to keep it working well.
Details of washing machine cleaning tips
How to clean your washing machine?
Anything that isn’t removed builds up over time and provides the ideal environment for the growth of mold and odors due to the amount of detergent, fabric softener, body soil, and grime that are drawn into the washer with each load.
To keep your machine spotless and pristine, do the following once a month:
- Run a Cycle: The time, agitation, and water temperature of many of the newer model washer cleaning cycles are preset and all you have to do is add bleach. Add 1/2 cup of liquid chlorine bleach to the dispenser if yours doesn’t have this cycle, or fill the dispenser to full capacity and run a normal cycle with hot water (or follow the instructions in the manual). Alternatively, you can follow the package directions and use a special cleaner like Affresh or GH Seal star Tide Washing Machine Cleaner. While bleach can kill mold and bacteria on its own, it may not dissolve detergent or other residue. These washer cleaners contain ingredients that can remove grease buildup and minerals from hard water.
- Set an extra spin and rinse: After the cleaning cycle is complete, run a second rinse and spin to make sure no bleach or particles remain.
- Cleaning the bin cabinet: If your machine has a dispenser that can be removed, remove it, disassemble it, and rinse it well with hot water. Remove any stuck-on dirt with a soft toothbrush. Dry them, put them back together and put them back in the machine. Wipe them down with a cloth if they’re still damp, or leave them open to air dry completely.
- Clean and dry the rubber seal and drum – If you have a front loader, clean the rubber seal and dry it completely to avoid warping. The drum can be left open to air dry or wiped clean to remove moisture.
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How to prevent a smelly washing machine?
Make it a habit, in addition to cleaning once a month, to lift the lid or leave the door of the machine open after each use. This allows air to move and removes any remaining moisture that can cause musty odors. As a safety measure, keep pets and children away from the open machine and use the child lock on the controls, if equipped.
- Quickly remove clean clothes: When a cycle closes, override the machine to prevent a musty odor from building up in the wash tub.
- Get rid of dirt or pet hair: After running several loads, you’ll discover pet hair in your washer if you have a shedding pet at home. Keep the door open until the drum and pet hair are completely dry. The fur should then be vacuumed up using the soft brush of the vacuum cleaner.
- Dry the gasket: If you have a front-loading machine, check the gasket often to make sure nothing small, like baby socks, gets caught, then towel dry it to prevent mold growth.
- Clean Dispenser and Controls: Wipe the controls, door handle, and any detergent or fabric softener drippings on the front, sides, and top of the machine and dispenser with a damp cloth. As soon as you notice them, remove them because it’s easier to do while they’re still wet. This will keep microorganisms and forms in check and keep your washing machine performing at its best.
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Is bleach or vinegar better to clean a washing machine?
The Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab believes that using vinegar to clean your washing machine is not effective enough, despite suggestions by some to use hot water and vinegar. Hard water deposits can be removed with plain vinegar (not diluted in the machine), but it is not as effective at killing germs as bleach or cleaning products made for that purpose. Also, excessive use of vinegar can damage rubber gaskets and hoses. According to Forte, using baking soda to clean a washing machine can help freshen the tub and eliminate odors, but it probably won’t completely remove deposits deep inside the machine or kill bacteria.
In this conclusion, keeping your washing machine clean is essential to maintain its functionality and extend its useful life. Over time, dirt, grime, and detergent residue can build up inside the machine, causing an unpleasant odor, reducing its efficiency, and even damaging its components. To keep your washing machine clean, start by running an empty cycle with hot water and a cup of white vinegar once a month. This will help dissolve any buildup and remove odors. You can also use baking soda or a commercial washer cleaner to give it a deep clean. Be sure to clean the exterior of the machine regularly with a damp cloth to prevent dust buildup. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your washing machine stays in top condition for many years to come.
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