If you are hit with an awful smell in your laundry room you may be surprised to learn that your front loading washing machine needs a clean.
Yep! That’s right...your washing machine needs cleaning too! If it’s your laundry day and you are hit with an unpleasant odor, it's time to make it fresh again.
I am sharing with you five simple steps to clean a smelly front loading washing machine
Why does my washer smell?
Like all things that have anything to do with water, if you are not keeping your washing machine clean and dry, the smells will come- and let me tell you those smells won’t be pretty.
Over time, washing machines build up sludge from detergents, fabric softeners, and different fibers from our clothing. This sludge then gets trapped in a warm, damp machine.
As the sludge sits there, mold or mildew form. This creates a smell we definitely do not want to have in our homes. Also, If your washing machine is in a small laundry room - as most of them are - the smell builds even more so since it doesn’t have enough space to ventilate the air around it.
5 Simple steps to clean a smelly front loading washing machine
With these 5 simple steps you will be able to get rid of that yucky smell that sometimes comes with a front loading washing machine.
You will need the following supplies to get this job done:
- Baking soda
- Towel for wiping off grime
- Affresh washing machine cleaner (optional)
1. Make a baking soda and vinegar mixture
- Start by mixing ¼ cup of baking soda with ¼ cup of water.
- Add this solution to your machine’s detergent container.
- Next you will need to pour two cups of white vinegar directly into the drum.
- You will run a normal cycle at high heat.
When cleaning I don’t like to use a bunch of harsh chemicals, especially on something I use all of the time like my washing machine. So this is a perfect solution, using a simple mixture of baking soda and vinegar to get the job done. I even use this same mixture to clean my oven.
The baking soda and vinegar will break up that sludge stuck to your drum.
It will also kill any mold. And no mold means, no more yucky smells.
2. Remove and wipe
Once your cycle has completed you will now wipe out the drum to remove any moisture. Grab the detergent dispenser and clean the tray and any attachments. You may have to refer to your owner’s manual to see how to pull these trays out to clean.
Once you have cleaned and dried the detergent dispenser replace it directly back into your machine carefully.
3. Clean the washer gasket
The washer gasket is going to surprise you. Just wait and see. You will be surprised to see how efficient your gasket is at holding in moisture for your machine. Don’t be too upset, it is the gasket’s job. So be thankful that it is working so hard instead of letting water spill out all over your floor. But in doing it’s job, it traps other gunk and grossness, allowing mold and mildew to grow.
To clean the gasket I like using a sponge for this step of cleaning my smelly front loading washing machine. Grab your sponge and add a touch of vinegar to it and scrub, scrub, scrub.
You may have to rinse your sponge and reapply vinegar a few times during this process till you get all the grim and junk out especially if you have an animal that sheds a lot of hair!
4. Clean the glass
This step can actually be done daily but it is also important when doing your monthly cleaning of your washer. Not only is it important to wipe down the inside but be sure to focus on wiping down the outside as well. When wiping down the glass of the door that faces the inside of the drum you are removing moisture that could possibly be trapped inside a closed washer for days at a time.
5. Clean the filter
6. Leave the door open
When your cleaning cycle has completed and you have also given it a good wipe with a soft cloth to remove any excess moisture you are done cleaning your washer! This last step is the most important. It is simple, leave the door open. You want to do this not only after your monthly cleaning but after every wash cycle
Leaving your door open after every wash helps the moisture evaporate quickly. This will help in keeping those unflattering smells from returning.
Can I buy a washing machine cleaner to use?
If you are looking to buy an effective product that you can use to clean your smelly front loading washing machine and don’t want to have to worry with the mixing of vinegar and baking soda I highly recommend Affresh. Affresh is a safe choice for anyone looking to use something with safe ingredients. You will love that their box has a place for you to mark off each month you cleaned your washer so no more forgetting if it was done or not!
How often should I clean my front loading washing machine?
It would be best if you cleaned your front load washing machine once a month to help keep your washer smelling so fresh, and so clean. Just remember it is important to keep that door open after each cycle to help cut down on the yucky smell that could come from your front loading washing machine.
Tips and tricks to keep your washing machine smelling fresh between each monthly cleaning
- After each cycle transfer the clothes to the dryer immediately-set a timer to help you remember when your clothes are done washing.
- Wipe down the glass door after each load
- Give the gasket a quick wipe down using an old rag you keep near the washer every few washes
- Keep the door open when you are not using the washing machine. If it is hard to keep it all the way open just make sure it is not tightly shut
With these 6 simple steps to clean your smelly front loading washing machine and your laundry room will forever be a place of fresh scents.