Even though washing machines are used to clean your clothes, the appliances themselves are susceptible to getting dirty. Both front-loading and top-loading washers can develop an odor problem if not properly maintained. Read on to learn what the culprit of a smelly washer is and what you can do about it!
Causes of a Smelly Washing Machine
Mold, mildew, and bacteria are the microscopic causes of a smelly washing machine. But where do they come from?
The mold, mildew, and bacteria trifecta can form in a few different places in a front-loading machine. They usually grow when lint, soap scum, and dirt or debris from your laundry get trapped or left behind. This can happen under and around the door gasket, as well as around the drum.
For a top-loading machine, soap scum and water can collect in the bottom of the drum. If left there, this special concoction can become a breeding ground for smelly microscopic organisms as well.
Front-Load Washing Machine Maintenance
If lint, soap scum, and dirt are what cause mold, mildew, and bacteria to form, it makes sense the that trick to a fresh-smelling washer is to remove those culprits. Once you know how to fix the problem, it’s relatively easy to maintain an odor-free front-loading washer!
Follow these easy steps to keep your front-loading machine smelling fresh and clean:
- Only use a high-efficiency (HE) laundry detergent. Regular detergents produce too many suds, causing a buildup of soap scum in high-efficiency front-loading machines.
- Skip the fabric softener. Again, this will cause buildup and give mold and mildew a breeding ground to grow.
- Regularly remove any lint, debris, or soap scum from the door gasket and wipe it down weekly with a vinegar solution.
- Keep the lint trap clean!
- Remove washed clothes immediately so they aren’t sitting damp in the washer.
- Let the washer dry in between uses by leaving the door open. You can also use a fan or dehumidifier to help the process.
Just like you clean your shower or bathtub to keep it fresh, your washing machine needs some TLC in between uses as well. With regular preventative and maintenance steps, you can say goodbye to washing machine odor issues.
Top Loading Washer Care
While front-loading washers are more susceptible to smells caused by bacteria, mildew, and mold, top-loading machines can be at risk as well. If water, soap scum, or lint back up in the bottom of the machine, these same stinky visitors can form.
Luckily, running the rinse and spin cycle on your top-loader (without any clothes!) usually solves the issue. If it persists, you can also try running those cycles through with a vinegar solution to clear out any lingering buildup.
With regular care and attention, you should be able to keep your top-loading or front-loading washing machine free and clear of any buildup or odor. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of…well, fresh laundry!
If you’re having washing machine issues that go beyond an unpleasant smell, such as strange noises or incomplete cycles, feel free to reach out to the licensed and insured appliance experts at Morris County Appliance Repair. We’re your go-to appliance repair service company in Rockaway and the surrounding area.
Call us today and we’ll put our 50+ years of experience to work for you. Morris County Appliance Repair—You Can Count On Us!