Don’t you want to learn how to clean a front loading washing machine? Then this article is for you. But why is it important to learn how to clean your front loader?
The state of your washing machine almost always determines the state of your laundry. So, if your washing machine is in top form, your clothes will be sure to come out looking as close to new as possible.
And on the other hand, if your machine is not kept in a clean state, it will find a way to rub off on your clothes.
Like come on, there has to be some proof that the clothes came out from it. So, if you have been using your washing machine, then it deserves some care.
Front-loading washing machines are popular as high efficiency (HE) washers. These machines do not use as much water and detergent per load as their top-loader counterparts.
While front-loading washing machines are widely used in different European countries and a lot of other places in the world, in the United States they are only just becoming popular.
This is because most American users are transitioning from their top-loader machines.
And the major challenge that American users face with the front-loading machines is with the machine giving off an unpleasant odor.
The good news is that you do not have to keep off doing your laundry because you are trying to avoid a stinky episode with your washing machine.
With proper cleaning and care, your front-loading washing machine will become one of your most-appreciated domestic helpers.
Let us consider some tips that can help you get the best out of your front-loading washer.
How To Clean A Front Loading Washing Machine — Tips To Note
To do a good job of cleaning a front loading washing machine, the first and most important thing to do is to allow the door to the washer to stay open all the time.
All the time here means when the washer is not in use. You obviously cannot leave the door open during a wash.
- It is essential to leave the door ajar so that both the door and the inside of the washer called the drum can dry properly between uses. Bad smells are prevalent under damp conditions.
- Second, as much as is possible, ensure that you use the right amount of detergent when washing.
This will prevent your washing machine from giving off offensive smells. Also, if you use more detergent than is necessary for a high efficiency (HE) machine, the detergent residue will build up inside your machine and on your clothes.
- After each wash, go a step further and take out the detergent tray so it can dry. Use a dry cloth or paper towel to wipe down the rubber seal and drum.
- Another thing to note is to not let your clothes sit in the machine. As soon as you complete a wash cycle, take the clothes out of the washer.
Allowing your clothes to sit in the front-loading washer is one sure way to get it to have an unpleasant smell.
Instead of having to rewash your clothes due to bad odor, take them out of the washer immediately after washing.
- Also, in humid weather, mold or mildew is likely to form as a result of leaving damp laundry in the front-loading washer.
- Finally, in this section, you need to carry out a deep cleaning on your front-loading washing machine at least once a month.
Please note that the other tips mentioned earlier are to be used on a day-to-day basis, while the deep cleaning could happen once a month.
Let us now consider what is needed to carry out a deep cleaning on your front-loading washer.
How To Clean A Front Loading Washing Machine — Items Needed
To deep clean the front-loading washing machine, you will need the following supplies:
- Liquid chlorine bleach
- One-third cup of Baking soda
- Two cups of vinegar
- Hydrogen peroxide (optional)
- Mild detergent
- Soft, absorbent cloth
- Small nylon brush
- Old toothbrush (optional)
How To Deep Clean A Front-loading Washer
To do a good job of deep-cleaning your washer, concentrate on cleaning each part of the washer one at a time.
Deep-cleaning The Gasket
The first place to concentrate on is the gasket. The gasket is that rubber ring that runs along the opening of the washer’s drum.
The gasket acts as a seal, preventing water from leaking out of your washer’s door. Due to its close contact with water, the gasket is famous for playing host to growing mildew.
- Before you start cleaning the gasket, pull back the rubber to see if any objects had been caught in the rubber folds.
These objects are usually forgotten items inside the pockets of clothes. If they are not discovered and removed on time, these sharp objects which include hairpins, paper clips, and even nails, can cause damage to the gasket when the machine is turned on.
This poses possible damage to the washing machine as a whole. So, you need to check the pockets of clothes to be sure they are empty before washing them.
To deep-clean the gasket, spray some vinegar into the rubber folds. Get some baking soda onto a cleaning rag, and use the rag to rub-down the rubber folds.
The reaction between the baking soda and vinegar will get your gasket clean. However, if you notice molds or mildew growing on your gasket, you can do one of two things.
The first option is to apply hydrogen peroxide to the affected parts of the gasket and then scrub off the mold with an old toothbrush. Hydrogen peroxide is known to eliminate molds.
The second option for killing mildew is to add one cup of chlorine bleach into the empty machine and then run a hot cycle.
You can decide to add half a cup of bleach to the fabric softener compartment before running the hot cycle to ensure that your whole machine is clean.
After the hot cycle is complete, it is advisable to run a few more cycles without adding bleach to get the smell of bleach off the machine.
Cleaning The Drum
To clean the drum of the front-loading washing machine, sprinkle one-third of a cup of baking soda into the drum and close the door.
This will ensure that every bad odor either from dirty clothes or mildew is gotten rid of. Add two cups of vinegar into the detergent tray, and turn the dial of the machine to cleaning cycle.
If your machine does not have a ‘cleaning cycle’ setting, select the hottest load setting. The reaction of vinegar and baking soda is powerful enough to clean your front-loading washing machine.
Let the machine run through a complete wash and rinse cycle. This should last for about an hour or an hour and thirty minutes.
Please note that no matter how dirty you feel your washing machine is you are never to mix chlorine bleach with any other cleaning agent. Any such mixture can result in the production and emission of toxic fumes.
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Cleaning The Dispenser Drawers
It is important to properly clean the dispenser drawers as fabric softener and detergent may build up in them causing odors or operational malfunction.
The drawers will need to be removed to be properly cleaned. Please consult the manufacturer’s manual that came with your washing machine for directions on how to remove the drawers.
If there are separate inserts for the bleach and fabric softener compartments, please remove them to clean separately.
Get hot water and rinse the drawer and inserts in it. This way, traces of accumulated residues will be removed.
If you notice that the drawers are coated with build-ups, allow them to soak for about ten minutes in the hot water. Rinse them and allow them to air-dry.
Do not forget to clean the drawer opening on the washer. You could use a small soft brush to remove residues from the upper and lower parts.
Once the drawers and inserts are clean and dry, return the inserts to their respective compartments.
Replace the dispenser drawer to its place and run a prewash cycle or any short cycle without any laundry in the drum to completely flush the system.
Cleaning The Body Of The Washer
It is not enough to maintain a neat interior. The exterior of your washing machine should also be kept clean.
This should even be done more regularly than the interior cleaning. It can be done weekly or even after every wash. Sometimes, it is enough to just wipe the top and sides of the washing machine with a damp cloth.
However, using warm water mixed with a mild soap won’t hurt. Be careful with enameled surfaces, though. Never use harsh or abrasive cleaning agents on them.
If you notice mildew growth or stains on the door or console, clean with diluted chlorine bleach.
The mixture should be a quarter of a cup of bleach in one quart of water. After cleaning with the diluted bleach, rinse several times with clear water.
If there is any residue from the tape or the labels, just use some warm water (with a little bit of detergent) to get it off.
In addition to all the tips given, please endeavor to not store or keep your laundry products on top of the washer at any time.
If they spill, they could cause damage to the finish of the machine or even the electronic controls.
All that is left for you to do is to get up and clean your front-loading washing machine.