Doing the laundry feels like a real pain. But what’s more painful is cleaning the washer after every wash. Thinking of skipping the step? It might not be a good idea. The condition of your dryer and washer has a significant impact on the cleanliness of your laundry. If you don’t clean your washing machine and dryer regularly, they won’t be around for long to wash your laundry.
Routine upkeep includes removing the lint after every wash, along with periodic cleaning. Here are effective tips to keep your washer and dryer clean. Also, find bonus tips on how to keep your washer in good condition for years!
Tips To Keep Your Washer Clean
- Clean with baking soda
Empty your washing machine and add about 2 cups of baking soda directly into the tub. Baking soda effectively scrubs the washer’s inside and prevents stale and moldy odors left behind after the wash. After adding soda, run a long hot water cycle and let it be. If your washer has a self-clean cycle, you can use it as well.
- Add vinegar
After running the hot water cycle with baking soda, add 2 cups of white vinegar and 8 to 10 drops of essential oils like lavender oil or tea tree oil. Essential oils help remove mineral and mildew deposits and also act as a mild disinfectant. Next, run another longest cycle you can find in the settings with hot water. Vinegar gets rid of any odors and deposits left by detergents and fabric softeners.
After running both cycles, you can wipe the drum with a microfiber cloth. If you still see any stains, use a paste made with baking soda and water and scrub the area with a non-scrubbing sponge. The paste should remove every smell and stain.
- Sanitize your washer with chlorine bleach
Worried about the hygiene of your younger kids? You can ensure proper cleanliness by regularly sanitizing the washer. For this, you can use chlorine bleach. Follow these steps to sanitize your washer using chlorine bleach:
- Empty the washer and set the temperature to the hottest setting you can find.
- Now add 1 cup of chlorine bleach to the empty washer drum and make sure there are no clothes left in it.
- Set the washer to a complete cycle and allow it to run through the entire cycle.
- After the cycle finishes, check the gaskets and rubber seals for any build-up. If you find any, make a mixture by adding 1/4 cup chlorine bleach and 1 quart of water. Now scrub the area with a soft brush.
- Now set the washer to the spin/rinse cycle to thoroughly clean out the bleach.
How To Clean The Dryer?
- Clean the lint in your dryer
Usually, the lint filter is inside the door of your dryer. The lint filter traps lint and dust particles while your clothes are drying. Lift out the filter and clean the accumulated lint. If you still see any trapped lint, take an old toothbrush and gently scrub off any residual lint.
- Wipe down the drum
Wipe down the drum of your dryer with a damp cloth to clean any accumulated dust. You can mix 1/4 cup of chlorine bleach and 1 quart of water to form a solution for deep cleaning. If you don’t have chlorine bleach, you can use a solution of phenolic disinfectant, pine oil, or quaternary disinfectant.
- Rinse the drum
It’s crucial never to skip this step as it’s essential to rinse all the surfaces with a clean cloth and plain water. Next, put some old towels and rags in the dryer and run the dryer for 5 minutes on the highest setting to clean any residual cleaning solution.
- Clean the dryer duct
Cleaning the duct would require a little bit of extra work. However, it’s vital to occasionally clean the dryer duct because lint can clog it, which can be very dangerous. For this, disconnect the dryer duct and clean it with a rotary brush. You can easily find a rotary brush at any departmental store. Cleaning the duct dislodges any clogs and lessens the chance of a fire.
- Don’t forget the exterior of the dryer
To complete the cleaning routine, wipe down the dryer’s exterior with the cleaning solution you made with water and chlorine bleach (or pine oil or any disinfectant). Now rinse the exterior with a cloth dipped in plain water to remove any cleaning solution left.
Extra Effective Care Tips For The Smooth Running Of Your Washer And Dryer
- Clean the lint trap after every single wash. For best results, include it in your routine to pull out the lint trap and clean it after taking out a final load of clothes.
- Wipe down the dryer drum periodically.
- Leave the washer door open after every wash. The washer is designed with an airtight seal which is essential when the washer is in use. In addition, keeping the door open after use will allow moisture to escape, preventing mildew growth inside the washer.
- Even if you don’t follow all the tips, make sure you follow this one. It’s advised never to leave wet clothes in your washer for a longer time. Doing so can escalate mildew growth.
- Make sure you read about the capacity of the washer and dryer and never overload it, or the cycle won’t function properly due to the excess stress.
- Periodically or twice every year, you should inspect the hoses for leaks, cracks, or other damage signs to avoid more significant issues.
- Use the specified laundry detergent for your machine. For instance, high-efficiency washing machines need different detergents as compared to others.
- If you live in a hard water area, it’s advisable to run a hot water cycle with about 3 liters of white vinegar once a month or every ten loads, whichever is earlier.
- Wipe the exterior of your washer with a damp sponge once every month to keep it fresh.
The Bottom Line
Maintaining your washer and dryer is essential. They’re pretty expensive to replace or repair, and you absolutely can’t function without them. Also, taking proper care ensures excellent performance and long-lasting durability. Follow these cleaning steps once every month, and your washer and dryer will thank you.