How to Clean the Washer

Ah, the fresh scent of clean laundry tantalizes our nostrils and adds a bit of pleasantness to our day. That is, until we look at the laundry and notice that it isn't quite as clean as we thought it was. Maintaining a clean washer helps to ensure that the laundry looks its brightest and smells its freshest.

Follow a few simple strategies on a regular basis, and your washer will produce the results that you want. Probably the most important step you can take is to read the manual provided by the manufacturer with the washing machine. Use the methods described in the manual for proper maintenance and cleaning of your machine if any are provided for you.

Fortunately, most of these cleaning steps are only necessary on an as needed basis. If you prefer, complete most of them once a month for a sparkling clean washing machine. Follow these helpful pointers or the ones in your manual to produce a nice clean washer.

  • Wipe the outside of your washer with a soft cloth and a mild solution of soap. This is especially important if you use the washer lid as a landing station for your laundry.
  • Whenever a load of wash is extremely dirty and leaves a bit of residue on the interior or inner tub of your washer, use a clean, damp cloth to wipe it clean.
  • If your washer is equipped with a lint filter, remove all lint accumulation on a regular basis such as after every wash cycle.
  • Clean the bleach and fabric softener dispensers as soon as they show any sign of dirt or residue. Avoid using laundry detergent to clean the fabric softener dispenser since it may interact with the fabric softener the next time you use it.
  • If desired, apply a coating of appliance wax following the instructions provided with the container. This helps to protect the exterior of your washer.
  • If your washing machine is set up to drain into a laundry tub, you should have a strainer placed in the drain to gather all traces of lint and larger particles of dirt. If the plumbing becomes clogged, your washer may not work properly. A clogged drain can prevent the water from draining properly. Remove any build-up in the strainer after each washing cycle.
  • Clean the washing machine about once a month by running a hot water cycle with bleach. Be sure that you do not use more than the recommended dosage of bleach for your washer. This information may be visible on the bleach dispenser or in the washer's manual.
  • Clean underneath the lid of the washer using a soft cloth or sponge and clean water or a mild soap solution. While you are at it, clean the top of the washer that sits beneath the lid as well.
  • If you have hard water and mineral deposits have appeared on your machine, refer to your manual for removal instructions. If you do not have the manual, contact the manufacturer by telephone or email. Additionally, you can search online for possible suggestions. Certain types of materials may not react well to specific cleaning methods; therefore, it is essential that you check before you use anything such as vinegar or a cleaning agent that includes vinegar.