Just like your sink, your oven and your fridge, your washing machine and dryer both need to be cleaned at least once every couple of months. This not only ensures a healthy, well-running machine, but it ensures that the machines won’t actually stain or ruin your clothes instead of cleaning them. Yikes!
Nowadays, front-loading washers and dryers are more popular than ever. And for multiple reasons. First, they are energy efficient which we all know helps decrease the amount of energy and water required to run a load. But these types of machines are also more prone to growing mold from stagnant water, and of course, smells ensue.
We’ve culled the internet for our favourite tips, which are environmentally sound and utilize ingredients everyone typically already has in their cupboards. The washing machine and the dryer will both require different methods, so we’ve broken them down in a few simple steps for you below. Remember to let us know what you think once you’ve given them a try.
You’ll need 2 cups of white vinegar, quarter-cup of baking soda and a quarter-cup of water.
Mix the baking soda and water together in a small bowl or cup. This will act as the “detergent” that you will place in detergent container of your front-load machine. Next, pour the vinegar directly into the drum of your machine (where you put the clothes). Turn the machine setting on a normal load with hot water and start the machine. The combination of vinegar and baking soda act to remove mold and mineral deposits that may have developed at the bottom of your washing machine’s barrel. This will ensure you have clean, fresh smelling clothes for a long time to come.
Don’t forget to use a scrub brush to clean the outside of the machine as well around the opening of the machine. There might be mold or build up around the door where you remove your clothes. Once clean, wipe the area clean with fresh water.
Not surprisingly, your dryer is a breeding ground for dust and lint. Start by removing everything from inside and on top of your dryer. Give the machine a once-over with a dry cloth or an old sock to collect any dust and lint. Remove the lint trap and try to wipe as much of the area as you can.
Use the vacuum hose to suck up as much of the debris collected in the lint trap as possible. This can be a huge fire hazard as the machine can get really hot during a cycle and the lint can catch fire. With a damp cloth, collect whatever is leftover, and wipe down the drum of the dryer. The lint trap also needs to be cleaned, so rinse it out with some soapy water and dry it off before replacing it in the machine.
If you feel comfortable, you can also try to gently remove the top of the dryer with a screwdriver. Once opened, use the vacuum to clean out what’s floating around the drum of the machine before putting it back together. If you’re not comfortable with this part of the job, remember there are professionals you can always call to help you with the dirty work.