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Washing Machine Cleaning Solutions

washing machine cleaning

If you want to know why your washing machine smells strange, it's time to clean it. If you never thought about cleaning, you still need to clean it. Follow these simple steps and you'll have a fresh, tasteless washing machine. My washing machine is two years old, so this is a chance to try out the cleaning experience and gradually do a good job.

1. Prepare tools

White vinegar or bleach (I use vinegar because I try to avoid bleach in household cleaning), baking soda, toothbrush, microfiber cloth, and worried about your laundry room smelling like pickles? Once rinsed, you don't smell the vinegar.

2. Set the washing machine with maximum load, maximum hot water setting and maximum washing time.

3. Remove the lid and, when the tub is full, add a quart of white vinegar (or bleach). 

I use vinegar because it disinfects the washing machine without producing the toxins in bleach. Next, add a cup of baking soda. Close the lid and let the washing machine stir for about a minute. Remove the lid again and let the water, vinegar and baking soda soak in the laundry tub for an hour so that the vinegar can do its job to remove bacteria, mold and mildew from the machine as well as the hose.

4. Remove all other parts, soak and clean nooks and crannies under the lid.

Soak and scrub moving parts such as bleach and fabric softener. Dry thoroughly and replace. Use a toothbrush to clean hard-to-reach areas on top of the blender and under the lid and around the edge of the tub. You can also use this time to clean the front and sides of the machine, but do not close the lid!

5. After an hour, close the lid and complete the cycle.

In the meantime, you can use vinegar to clean the top of the washing machine, the panel and the indicator dashboard.

6. Repeat.

Do a hot wash with a quart of vinegar to remove any residue that came loose and remained during the first cycle.

7. Once the washing machine has dried, wipe the sides and bottom of the tub with vinegar to remove any last residue. 

You can extend the cleanliness of a new washing machine by opening the lid between uses. This dries the interior thoroughly and prevents mildew.

After completing the cycle with the vinegar, repeat the process if the washing machine gets dirty. Vinegar is great for removing any buildup, not to mention softening any soap and other residue in washing machines and hoses.

In this solution, it took more than an hour to complete these steps, and then it was time to deal with the outside of the washing machine and the fabric softener and bleach containers. Using a clean cloth or microfiber cloth, dip it into the vinegar solution and wring it out. Wipe the exterior, lid and control panel, taking care not to make it too wet. Remove the bleach container and wipe it around the dirt collection box area. Rinse the cloth and remove the softener container from the machine and wipe its exterior and interior. Close the lid and allow the washing machine to complete its cycle.

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