Front loading washing machines are an ergonomic, efficient solution to the problem of doing laundry. Due to their complexity, however, it can be difficult to keep them clean. How to clean a front load washer, then? The experts at Appliances Connection have compiled a list of cleaning methods, all of which work for different issues in front load washing machines.
Baking Soda and White Vinegar
This is an all-natural way to clean the inside of your front load washer, and it uses ingredients you likely have in your home already. Pour 1/3 cup of baking soda into the drum of the machine, and 2 cups of white vinegar into the detergent tray. Run the washer on the hottest cycle and heaviest soil level possible. This mixture will fizz up inside the drum as the cycle runs, getting into every little crevice and restoring your washing machine to its original clean state.
If you have mold or mildew problems in your front load washer, you may need to use bleach as a cleanser instead. Pour 2 cups of bleach into your washing machine's bleach dispenser and then run an empty load on the hottest, heaviest wash cycle the machine allows. Make sure to leave the washing machine's door open when the load is done, as this increases ventilation inside the machine and allows any leftover water to evaporate. Be careful, however, as if the drum of your machine is made of stainless steel, bleach can damage it.
This method of how to clean a front load washer is a great way to reduce odors and keep your washing machine clean using hydrogen peroxide. Add two cups of hydrogen peroxide to the tub, and then run an empty load on the washer's hottest setting. You can repeat this cycle monthly to keep mold and mildew at bay, even in humid environments. If you want some extra cleaning power, you can combine the hydrogen peroxide with 1/2 cup of baking soda. You can even regularly spray the interior of your washer down with a mixture of two cups of water and 1/2 cup of hydrogen peroxide to keep persistent odors at bay.
Washing Machine Cleaner
There are a lot of commercial washing machine cleaners out there. Some of these come in tablet form, while others are powders or liquids. If you go with one of these options, make sure you find one that will work with your specific washer: some cleaners only work with HE washing machines, while others are better for top loading or front loading washers. In all cases, you can follow the directions that come with the cleaner.
Don't Forget the Parts
Front load washing machines tend to have more removable parts than their top loading counterparts. Look in your washing machine's owner's manual to see whether you can remove the detergent dispenser and/or the gasket. If you can, take these off and clean them separately using a scrub brush and hot, soapy water. This is critical in order to clean the areas that are bypassed by the flow of water through the machine. Lint and hair can also build up in a front load washer's gasket, leading to extra mold and mildew, as well as the potential for clogs.
How do you get rid of mold in a top loading washing machine?
Mold is one of the most common issues in washing machines, and it's important to get rid of it right away. In most cases, bleach will kill mold in washing machines, but you don't want to use bleach on stainless steel tubs. For these, we suggest the other methods listed above such as vinegar or commercial cleaning products.
Do dishwasher tablets damage washing machines?
In general, dishwasher tablets won't harm washing machines, but the detergent in them isn't meant for clothes, so it's critical to make sure that you fully rinse the machine before using it to clean your laundry again.
Do I really have to clean my washing machine?
Yes, it's important to keep your washing machine clean. This is especially true in humid areas where water doesn't evaporate as quickly and can build up in the corners of your machine. If you notice the scent of mold or mildew on your fresh laundry, it's definitely time to clean your washing machine.