Your washing machine is one of the most important appliances in your home. It saves you time and energy by washing your clothes for you. However, if you don’t clean your washing machine regularly, it can become a breeding ground for bacteria and mold. This can lead to foul odors and even health problems. Here’s how to clean a top loading washing machine and keep it running smoothly for years to come.
Gather Your Supplies
Before you start cleaning your washing machine, you’ll need to gather some supplies. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Baking soda
- Cloth or sponge
- Hot water
Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Your Top Loading Washing Machine
Step 1: Empty the Washing Machine
The first step in cleaning your washing machine is to empty it completely. Remove any clothes, towels, or other items that may be inside. Make sure the drum is completely empty before proceeding to the next step.
Step 2: Clean the Detergent Dispenser
The detergent dispenser can become clogged with detergent and fabric softener over time. To clean it, remove the dispenser from the washing machine and soak it in hot water for a few minutes. Use a toothbrush to scrub away any buildup, then rinse it thoroughly and let it dry before replacing it.
Step 3: Clean the Drum
The drum of your washing machine can also become dirty over time. To clean it, fill the drum with hot water and add 1 cup of vinegar. Let the machine run for a few minutes, then stop it and let the water sit for 30 minutes to an hour. After the water has had time to soak, turn the machine back on and let it complete its cycle.
Step 4: Clean the Outside of the Machine
The outside of your washing machine can also become dirty and grimy. Use a cloth or sponge and some hot water to wipe down the outside of the machine. For tough stains or buildup, you can use a mixture of baking soda and water to scrub the surface clean.
Step 5: Run a Second Cycle with Baking Soda
After you’ve cleaned the drum and the detergent dispenser, it’s time to run a second cycle with baking soda. Fill the drum with hot water and add 1 cup of baking soda. Let the machine run for a few minutes, then stop it and let the water sit for 30 minutes to an hour. After the water has had time to soak, turn the machine back on and let it complete its cycle.
How often should I clean my washing machine?
You should clean your washing machine at least once a month to prevent the buildup of bacteria and mold. If you notice any foul odors or your clothes are coming out of the machine smelling musty, it’s time to clean your machine.
Can I use bleach to clean my washing machine?
Yes, you can use bleach to clean your washing machine. However, you should only use it sparingly and make sure to rinse the machine thoroughly after using it. Bleach can be harsh on your machine and can cause damage if used too frequently.
Is it safe to use vinegar in my washing machine?
Yes, vinegar is safe to use in your washing machine. It is a natural cleaning agent that can help remove buildup and odors from your machine. However, you should avoid using it if you have a septic system, as it can disrupt the natural balance of bacteria in your tank.