Washing machines are a lifesaver when it comes to doing laundry. However, over time, they can develop a nasty smell that can transfer onto your clothes. Washing machines are damp and dark, making them a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and mold.
If you’re wondering how to clean a stinky washing machine, you’re in luck. In this article, we’ll go over some tips and tricks to help you get your machine smelling fresh again.
What Causes a Washing Machine to Smell?
Before we dive into how to clean a stinky washing machine, let’s first understand what causes the smell. The most common culprit is mold and mildew that grow in the damp and dark environment of the washing machine.
Other factors that contribute to the smell include using too much detergent, using the wrong type of detergent, and not leaving the door or lid open after each use to allow the machine to air out.
How Often Should You Clean Your Washing Machine?
To prevent your washing machine from developing a foul smell, it’s important to keep it clean. You should aim to clean your machine at least once a month.
If you have a high-efficiency machine or use your machine frequently, you may need to clean it more often.
How to Clean a Stinky Washing Machine
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get into how to clean a stinky washing machine.
1. Check the Manufacturer’s Instructions
Before you start cleaning your washing machine, it’s important to check the manufacturer’s instructions. Some machines require specific cleaning products, while others may have special cleaning cycles.
2. Clean the Dispensers
The detergent and fabric softener dispensers can harbor bacteria and mold. To clean them, remove them from the machine and wash them in hot, soapy water. Use an old toothbrush to scrub away any buildup.
3. Clean the Drum
To clean the drum, run a hot cycle with no clothes and add two cups of white vinegar. The vinegar will help kill any bacteria and remove any buildup. Once the cycle is complete, wipe down the inside of the drum with a clean cloth.
4. Clean the Seal
The rubber seal around the door or lid can also harbor bacteria and mold. To clean it, mix equal parts water and vinegar and use a sponge to wipe it down. Be sure to get into all the crevices.
5. Leave the Door or Lid Open
After each use, leave the door or lid open to allow the machine to air out. This will help prevent bacteria and mold from growing.
6. Use the Right Detergent
Using too much detergent or the wrong type of detergent can contribute to the smell. Use a high-quality detergent that is designed for use in washing machines.
7. Run a Maintenance Wash
To keep your machine smelling fresh, run a maintenance wash once a month. Run a hot cycle with no clothes and add a cup of baking soda. The baking soda will help neutralize any odors.
If you’re wondering how to clean a stinky washing machine, the key is to keep it clean and dry. Follow these tips to help prevent bacteria and mold from growing and keep your machine smelling fresh.