If you have noticed foul odors coming from your washing machine, don't throw in the towel just yet. The solution may be as simple as adding a few ingredients to the wash or giving the components a thorough cleaning. Follow these easy steps to eliminate nasty odors and keep your washer smelling fresh and clean.
1. Eliminate the Germs (to Eliminate Odors)
Some appliances tend to develop foul odors due to a build-up of bacteria. If your washing machine is harboring germs, you may begin to notice a rather strong odor. The remedy is pretty simple.
Chlorine bleach is known to disinfect a variety of surfaces. It is especially powerful at destroying odorcausing mildew. Simply add some bleach to your wash cycle, but be sure not to mix it with any detergent.
If you prefer not to use bleach, you might scout your stores for a more natural solution. Sanitize or disinfect your washer by using a commercial sanitizing product developed for washing machines.
When using a store-bought disinfectant, read the labels to ensure the product kills a high level of germs. Also, if you must add the solution to the wash, and you are using cold water, be certain the product works in all water temperatures. In addition, read the label to be certain the sanitizing product is safe for your delicate fabrics.
2. Clean Your Washing Machine Dispensers and Components
Most washers contain soap and bleach dispensers. Some of the modern machines also contain a dispenser for adding water softeners. If your washing machine is equipped with these components, you need to clean them periodically. Failing to do so may result in an accumulation of residue, and this often causes nasty odors to develop.
Remove the dispensers and clean them with warm soapy water. You might want to use a soft bristled brush or cotton swab to remove debris that tends to get into the crevices. Give the dispensers a thorough scrubbing and finish up by allowing them to soak in a solution of vinegar and water for 10-20 minutes.
The washing machine lint trap is another component to clean regularly. Lint and debris may be causing the odors.
3. Avoid Bargain Brand Detergents
Using cheap-quality detergents may contribute to a build up of sudsy residue, and this may be causing your machine to smell. Using the right kind of laundry detergent is important, especially if you have a front loading washer. Read the labels on your laundry soap.
It's a good idea to use products designed for your top loading machine, as these tend to create low suds.
In addition, follow the directions carefully. Don't overload the washer with too much detergent, as the suds may leave behind residue that creates odor-causing mildew to form.
4. Call in a Repair Technician If All Else Fails
In some cases, the solution is not quite so obvious. If nothing seems to be working to eliminate those stubborn odors in your machine, there could be a problem that needs to be professionally checked. A clogged drain pump or water hose may be the culprit of those hard-to-eliminate odors. If you are not inclined to correct the issue yourself, it may be worth your while to call in a professional.
In addition to checking the connections, the repair technician may inspect the drum for limescale. The heating elements may also need to be checked, as limescale may be causing the odors. He or she may also inspect and replace the door seal or filter housing, both of which may be harboring germs and odors.
Follow the above mentioned tips to help keep odors at bay and enjoy a fresh smelling washer.