One of the Most Used Cleaning Machines That We Neglect to Actually….CLEAN!
How often do you run your washing machine? How often are you trying to wash stains out of clothes, bed linens, or cushion or pillow covers from your kids or pets? Okay……now how often do you clean your washing machine?
We never really think about cleaning a machine that is meant to, well, you know…CLEAN THINGS: Here is a guide to walk you through cleaning your washing machine.
There are two main types of washing machines: Front-Load Washing Machines and Top-Load Washing Machines. In this blog, we are going to cover deep cleaning and regular cleaning for your Front-Load Washing Machine.
You will need:
Some old rags or microfiber towels
An Old Toothbrush
Small tray or bowl
Okay, let’s start with a deep cleaning of your front-load washing machine! Your front-load washing machine can easily create a build-up of mold and/or mildew inside, especially hidden in the rubber seals and the filter, but don’t worry this can be fixed.
Let’s take care of this problem before we move on to the rest of the washing machine.
First of all, protect yourself! Make sure you are wearing a pair of rubber gloves.
Let’s start with draining the water from the washer and cleaning the filter. The filter is located on the front of the machine towards the base of it. You are going to want to use the tray or bowl to catch the water that will come out of the drain before you can access the filter. Now, take out the filter and scrub it with some vinegar! If you have never done this before, be prepared for some pretty “interesting” (A.K.A gross) smells to come along with this process. Replace the filter and close up the drain.
RUBBER SEAL CLEANING
Now, onto the rubber seal on the washer! Using a 50/50 mix of distilled vinegar and water, wipe down the outside of the rubber seal, but don’t forget to clean the part of the seal where it meets the drum/basin of the washer. If you have issues with the rubber gasket holding water in it after your wash cycles…..guess what! There’s a drain in the rubber seal too! Use an old toothbrush to clean that drain out! You may even want to lightly pull the rubber seal away from the drain to make sure there isn’t anything else hidden in there to block the drain.
First "CLEAN" CYCLE
Okay, the hard part is done! Now, you will want to put about 1.5 to 2 cups of distilled vinegar in your detergent dispenser and run your washer on the “Clean Cycle” or the longest and hottest wash cycle. Running distilled vinegar through your washer will help to kill off any mold or mildew still lingering in the drain, rubber seal, and filter.
Now for cycle number two! Add about 1 cup of baking soda to your washer and run it on a quick, but still hot, cycle. The baking soda will help to deodorize your machine, but if combined with the vinegar in one cycle…well we all remember what our middle school science fair volcanoes looked like, right?
Third and final cleaning cycle! Using fabric softener, you should run this extra cleaning cycle! Most fabric softeners are made with animal fats and if there is any lingering fabric softener in the washer, it will start to smell. So, you should run a quick wash with some powder dishwasher detergent since it is designed to break up animal fats.
Let’s not forget about the rest of the washing machine! After you have run all of your clean cycles, make sure you take out your detergent tray and wash it well to get any detergent buildup off of it with your vinegar and water solution. Open the door to the washer and wipe the entire door down with your vinegar solution, don’t forget to clean the bottom of the door where hair and other debris like to collect before they get sucked into your rubber seal and clog the drain again.
Ideally, depending on how often your washing machine is in use, you should only have to deep clean your machine once a year! Now, let’s take a look at keeping your washing machine clean.
You can wash your clothes or linens with vinegar! Instead of using laundry detergent and fabric softener every once in a while, just use some distilled vinegar to wash your clothes or linens. Distilled vinegar is great for helping to remove stains, remove odors from your clothes or linens, it’s a natural fabric softener, and your clothes or linens won’t smell like vinegar when they come out of the wash! The distilled vinegar has benefits for your clothes and linens as well as helping to prevent mold and mildew build-up in your washer! It’s a win-win!
ERASE MILDEW SMELLS
Starting to notice a faint mildew smell coming from your machine? Remember to remove clothes as soon as the wash cycle is over, wipe up any excess moisture from the drum/basin door and rubber seal, and try to remember to leave the door open between loads for the machine to dry. You can even run a quick cycle with some baking soda for a little extra deodorizing help!
And last, but not least, if you start to notice a build-up in your detergent dispenser, wipe it out! Eventually, the build-up will turn into mold and you will question if your clothes are even truly clean after realizing it!
There you have it! You have now successfully done all of the steps to have a clean and smelly-free front-load washer. You can now be the talk of the town with your clothes smelling so fresh and so clean, clean.
Stay tuned for Part 2 How To Clean Top-Load Washing Machines in next week's Blog!
The Canton Cleaning Company is a full-service cleaning company providing Home Cleaning services in Baltimore, Commercial Cleaning Services in Baltimore, Commercial Cleaning Services in Charleston, SC, Commercial Cleaning Services in Philadelphia, and Commercial Cleaning Services in Washington, DC.