How To Deodorize And Clean Your Front-Loading Washer

Posted on: 31 March 2016

If you want the convenience and water efficiency that comes with a front-loading washing machine without dealing with mold and mildew issues, with the right cleaning maintenance you can. Front-loading washing machines have become more popular over the past two decades, and with their popularity comes the potential problem of mold and mildew growth inside the washer. Here are some tips to help you clean and remove odors from your washing machine and how to maintain it.

Why Your Washer Has an Odor

The fix to remedy mold and mildew and to remove any smells within your front-loading clothes washer is simple. Then, it just takes a few extra minutes of your time each week to keep the mold and mildew from returning. 

Mold and mildew can grow inside your washer because the front-loading door creates a water-tight seal to keep water inside the machine while it is working. Unfortunately, this can create the perfect environment for mold and mildew to grow. After each load, if you close the washer door, this traps all the humidity and any dirt left over from your clothes, allowing mold and mildew growth. Be sure to leave your washer door open after each load to allow the moisture inside to dry out.

Clean Inside Your Washer's Drum and Rubber Seal

First, run your washer on a cleaning cycle with bleach added to the washer's fabric softener dispenser. When that cycle has finished, open the door and clean around the inside of the washer door's rubber seal. The rubber seal around your washer's door has a rubber flap that can trap many types of debris from washing clothes. Pull this rubber flap back with your hand to see what types of residue, debris, or if any mold is growing here. You might find coins, pens, rocks, or anything else that went into the washer with your clothes. Remove any loose articles you find trapped beneath the flap.

Mix a cleaning solution of equal parts water and white vinegar and place it in a spray bottle. Spray the cleaning mixture behind and on the outside of the rubber seal flap to cover all crevices on the seal. Allow it to sit for a few minutes. Using a cloth, wipe the inside and outside of the rubber seal to remove any mold, mildew, or dirt. 

Next, use the cleaning solution to spray inside your washer's drum and wipe it clean with your cloth.

Clean Your Washer's Detergent Dispenser

It is also a good idea to clean out the detergent and fabric softener dispenser regularly. The more you use your washer, the more often you will need to clean it as residue collects inside the dispenser. When residue from detergent and softener collect, mildew and mold can begin to grow and cause your washer to stink. So, check your dispenser weekly and clean it as needed.

To clean the dispenser, pull it straight out from your washer. The top part of your dispenser should pull off from the bottom section. Soak both pieces in hot soapy water for a few minutes, then clean them with a dish cloth, sponge, or plastic scrub brush. Dry both pieces and snap them back together.

Spray the cleaning mixture inside the opening of the dispenser's compartment on your washer. Use a plastic cleaning brush to remove stuck-on residue and wipe it with a cloth. To reach into the back of the compartment, use a long-handled dish scrub brush or a clean cloth wrapped around the end of a wooden spoon to remove any residue. Replace the dispenser back into your washer.

Use the Right Amount of Detergent and Fabric Softener

If your front-loading washer is a high efficiency washer, using too much detergent and softener can cause suds and residue to build up inside your machine and allow mold growth. Be sure to check in your washer's user guide to find the recommended amount of detergent and other liquids to use with it. You can also check the packaging of your detergent and fabric softener for recommended amount to use. Because a high efficiency washer uses 1/3 to 2/3 less water than a standard top-loading washer, you will need to use less detergent and softener as well.

Use this information to clean your front-loading washer and keep it smelling fresh. For more information, contact companies like Affordable Appliance Repair.