How to Clean Your Washing Machine

Never have we once wondered about the good old device which helps in keeping our clothes clean and if we did, never have we bothered to clean the washing machine unless you notice an unpleasant smell coming from the washing machine, or even from your freshly washed clothes.

When the washing machine does not function properly, it calls for some pampering and repair. Repairing a washing machine is one’s worst nightmare and no one wants to be in such a situation. To avoid a breakdown we need to return the favor and periodically maintain the washing machine. So, here are some tips on cleaning the washing machine.

What you’ll need:

  1. White cleaning vinegar
  2. Microfiber cloth/old brush
  3. Toothbrush
  4. Baking soda/Bleach

Best Way To Clean A Top-Load Washing Machine:

Top loading machines usually have dirt around the lid and near to the drains. Here’s how to clean with vinegar and baking soda.


  • Make sure the washing machine is empty and then run it with the largest load setting and highest temperature. Add 2 or 3 cups of cleaning vinegar and let the machine run for a minute. This will ensure that vinegar gets properly mixed.
  • Now add about half a cup of baking soda or depending upon the requirement. Switch on the machine to make sure the baking soda gets mixed well. Stop the machine after sometime allow it to sit for the next hour.
  • While the vinegar, hot water, and baking soda are settling in, use a microfiber cloth or an old toothbrush dipped in vinegar water to rub the washer. Make sure to thoroughly clean the washer and basin top since these places have a lot of soap residue.
  • After wiping thoroughly now resume the washing cycle and drain the basin while in operation. Again, let the washing machine run and this will allow the vinegar and baking soda to be completely removed before you wash your clothes.
  • We can also use the washing machine tub cleaning powder, washing machine drum cleaning powder instead of using baking soda and vinegar.

The Best Way Of Cleaning A Front-Loading Washing Machine:

Front-loading machines have multiple areas where dirt gets built up, so it requires more attention while cleaning.


  • Make sure to thoroughly clean around the washer. This region will, in general, get loaded up with hair and soap residue. Clean it using vinegar and eventually add baking soda to it.
  • Now add some baking soda and vinegar-water mixture to the basin.
  • Run the machine at its highest load setting and at the highest temperature setting of the machine.
  • Run another cycle to ensure complete removal of dirt and wipe the inner padding with a microfiber cloth.
  • Another place where there’s a lot of dirt is the filter, which is at the bottom end of the machine, enclosed by a lid. Here’s how to clean the washing machine filter. Before opening the chamber make sure to use a waste cloth so that the contents don’t spill out and spoil the floor. Pop open the chamber and remove the filter and just wash away the dirt using ordinary tap water.
  • A lot of dirt is built up in the basin where detergents are fed. There’ll be lots of soap residue buildup in this chamber over the years, which needs to be removed. The residue can be washed away or can be scraped off.

How To Care For Your Washing Machine?

  • Position the washing machine such that there is enough gap between the wall and machine, the hose may get bent if the machine is too close to the wall.
  • Make sure that the stands of the machine are at level with the floor, else the vibration caused when the operation may damage the body or even worse damage the internal wiring and motors.
  • Wash the soap residue and add a cleaning solution or a mixture of baking soda, hot water, and vinegar to clean the stringent soap residue.
  • Leave the lid open between washes to properly aerate the inner chambers. This avoids musty odors.
  • Use the detergent as per requirement excess detergent may result in the formation of more residue.
  • Don’t overload the machine with more clothes than mentioned in the manual of the machine. Each machine has its own capacity and it’s better to wash them in multiple stages rather than to smoke the machine trying to do it all at once.

How Often To Clean?

There are no general instructions as to how often a washing machine needs to be cleaned. But it would be great if washing machines are cleaned on a monthly basis. This doesn’t allow time for residue formation, so the work is easier. Another way around is to use the washing machine cleaner in between wash cycles. If this isn’t possible then maybe twice or thrice every year will be suitable. But if your clothes begin to smell, then the machine definitely needs to be cleaned and no further delay should be entertained.

Even a machine which is built to clean and wash also needs to be cleaned at times to increase its longevity. If one understands this and cleans the machine regularly then both man and machine will be in harmony and we don’t need to fear about ruining our washing machine.

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