Just purchased a new front load washing machine? Of course, you want to keep it as clean and fresh as your clothing you are putting in it. We recommend that you clean a front load washing machine on a monthly basis using these procedures.
Front load washers are a huge improvement over top load machines. They have better cleaning performance, are gentler on clothing, have larger capacities, and use less water and energy. However, a common complaint is that the washer develops an odor over time. This can be easily solved with regular preventive measures and cleaning.
As a preventive measure, leave the washer door slightly open following use. Also, it is a good idea to use a dry cloth to dry the rubber door gasket after each use. These simple steps may lengthen the time between cleaning intervals.
First, check your user guide or manual that was included with your machine before attempting any of the following procedures. We recommend you follow manufacturer cleaning instructions – ignoring their suggestions may void your warranty.
Cleaning the Interior Wash Tub:
Many newer front loading machines have specially designed cleaning cycles. If yours does, follow the steps described in the manual that was included with your machine, if not we recommend that you follow the following simple steps.
First, only clean an entirely empty washing machine being sure to remove any and all clothing. Never add laundry detergent for this process.
Open the washer door and pour one cup of liquid bleach into the basket. Close the door and select the normal wash cycle. If you machine has an extra rinse option select this too. Run the cycle as soon as possible after adding the bleach. Note that some manufacturers recommend not adding bleach directly into the tub but instead filling the detergent compartment instead. Check you manual for manufacturer recommendations.
Start the wash cycle and without interruption allow the cycle to fully complete. Once complete, run the cycle again with no bleach or detergent to completely rinse the tub. Repeat the rinsing cycle as needed.
Note that after this procedure your machine may have a slight bleach odor. This is normal. Also, it is recommended that you run a light color load after this cleaning procedure.
For especially foul odors in washers repeat the cleaning process with the bleach and/or also fill the bleach dispenser to the fill line. This will add a second dose of bleach to ensure odors and bacteria are stopped in their tracks.
Cleaning the Door Gasket:
Open the washer door and remove all clothing from the wash tub. Also, inspect the inside of the gasket making sure there are no small items of clothing stuck inside. If there are, remove these as well.
Wearing rubber gloves, mix a solution of ¾ cup liquid bleach to 1 gallon of water. Using a cloth damp with this solution, carefully and fully wipe down the entire gasket. Let stand for 5 minutes and rinse well with cold water.
Cleaning the Dispenser:
Detergent and fabric softener can build up in the dispenser of a front load washer. When this happens the following procedures may be followed.
Remove the dispenser using care to avoid breakage. Machines may differ on how this is done, so check owner’s manual for guidance on your particular machine. Most have some sort of tab that will need to depress to unlock the dispenser. If the dispenser is made of multiple components, disassemble again using care so as not to cause any damage.
Wash thoroughly and completely using hot water and a mild detergent. Rinse with cold water and dry.
To clean the drawer opening use a small brush, such as an old toothbrush, to remove all residue.
Reinstall clean dispenser.