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How to Keep Your Washing Machine Clean - Laundry Basics

04-22 2022

Every time you switch on your Washing Machine and run a complete cycle, the clothes get twisted and knocked around, but in the end, they come out cleaner and brighter than before. The washing machine disposes of a chunk of the dirt through the drainpipe. Still, the dirt, the residue from the clothes, and soap scum tend to accumulate in the machine over a period of time, which means that your machine needs serious cleaning. 

If left uncleaned for long, the accumulated residue can cause several problems like a clogged drainpipe, foul smell on the clothes, etc. Knowing how to clean your washing machine correctly is vital to keep the odours, dirt, and grime at bay. This blog discusses a detailed three-step process to clean your washing machine.

Step 1 – Run a full cycle with vinegar

A common kitchen ingredient, white vinegar has natural disinfectant properties, making it highly useful for cleaning your washing machine. Instead of detergent, pour two cups of white vinegar into the detergent dispenser and run an empty, hot cycle. 

Don’t worry about the vinegar harming your machine or the clothes. Hot water and vinegar are a potent combination that effectively removes the accumulated dirt and prevents bacterial growth inside the drum and around the lid. Vinegar also acts as a deodorizer that helps eliminate the odour from the machine.

Step 2 – Spray white vinegar over the drum

Once a cycle is complete, you can prepare a DIY (Do It Yourself) cleaning solution that you can spray over the washing drum. To prepare the solution: 

  1. Pour one cup of white vinegar      into a spray bottle and add a few drops of lemon juice.

  2. Mix the solution well and spray      it all over the drum.

  3. Let the solution sit for a few      minutes, and then wipe it off with a soft cloth, preferably a microfiber      cloth or a sponge.

While the vinegar will help remove the residual build-up, grease, and water stains on the surface of the drum, lemon will eliminate the foul smell and keep the inside smelling fresh. 

Step 3 – Run a second cycle 

Run a second empty cycle with hot only water. You may add half a cup of baking soda into the drum to clear the residue from the first cycle. After the second cycle is complete, use a microfibre cloth to wipe out the interior.

Other tips for cleaning your Washing Machine

Front-load machine

The three-step cleaning process discussed above is primarily focused on cleaning the washing drum, which is the most critical section. However, you must also focus on other parts for more comprehensive cleaning, like the gasket or the rubber seal around the door and the detergent tray. 

During the wash, detergent residue tends to get stuck around the gasket, and over time it increases the risk of developing mildew and mold. Hence, you must pay close attention to cleaning these areas, using the below tips:

  1. Spray white vinegar on the rubber      seal and in the detergent tray.

  2. Keep the door and the tray open      for a few minutes

  3. Wipe the gasket and the tray with      a microfibre cloth or sponge.

Moreover, leave the door open for at least 20-30 minutes after every wash to let the inside of the machine dry out entirely and prevent moisture build-up.  

Top load machine

Top-loading washing machines gather more dust than front-load ones, especially around the dials. So, for a thorough cleaning, use the below tips:

  1. Dip a microfibre cloth in white      vinegar and use it to remove the dust or detergent residues in the      detergent dispenser tray and around the dials. 

  2. Use a toothbrush for cleaning      hard-to-reach areas around the lid and under the rim of the washtub. 

When should you clean your Washing Machine?

The ideal cleaning cycle of your washing machine depends on your usage. However, it is better to give your washing machine a thorough cleaning once or twice a month. Regular cleaning helps in keeping the machine functioning in good condition, and the subsequent washes are of optimum quality.

Washing Machines with Self Clean Technology

While you can clean the drum manually and ensure 100% clean wash, you can purchase a machine equipped with Self Clean technology. The feature prevents dirt and bacteria accumulation inside the machine by using smart balls that are germ-free and anti-bacterial, ensuring a healthy and clean inner drum.

Washing machines with Self Clean technology are undoubtedly the future as they reduce the need for regular manual cleaning and maintenance of the machine. Thus, it will help save time and labour.

Washing machines can easily last for more than a decade if you take care of them. All it takes to experience the optimal performance of your washing machine is taking a little time to clean it regularly.