Cleaning a Top-Loader Washer

As we were washing clothes the other day, we noticed a rather nasty odor coming from the washer. Yuck-o, right? So I looked up some ways to clean our top-loader washing machine. Most recipes called for bleach and vinegar. Well, I only had vinegar on hand and beside, bleach is stinky! After trying out what I found I think next time I would tweak it a bit.

2-4 cups White Vinegar
1/2-1 cup Baking Soda
Toothbrush that no one's using or will use ever again

That's it!

Step 1: Fill up your washer with the hottest setting temperature on the largest load. (My washer says HOT COLD on EX SUPER. I don't know why it says hot and cold but it was indeed super hot while filling it up.) After it fills and before it agitates stop the cycle.
Step 2: Now pour in the vinegar and the baking soda. Turn back on the cycle for about 3 minutes and let it agitate. Turn off the cycle again. Now we're going to let it soak for 1 hour with the lid open.

While this soaks, pop off the liquid bleach spout thingy and clean that out. WARNING: this may be really dirty and disgusting. I also cleaned the lid, the hinge behind the lid, and the softener component. Fun fact: liquid softner is bad for you clothes and machine. It can create build up on both. I pulled off the softener dispenser and got to work. There was so much grime on it I still couldn't get it all the way clean after scrubbing and scrubbing. I popped it back on and poured some vinegar down there and let it all soak. I also scrubbed the agitator a little bit which helped since I don't think our machine had ever been washed and probably needed more care than usual.

Step 3:  After the 1 hour of soaking turn back on the cycle and let the machine do the work. An extra rinse may be a good idea. I just wiped everything down after the cycle was over. Keep the lid open.

So pretty! I didn't even know the letters on the bleach and fabric softener dispensers weren't black...Gross huh?

A handy trick in making sure you don't have a stinky washing machine as quickly is to leave the lid open after you are done washing clothes. This allows the machine to dry out before mildew can start to grow. Also, clean your machine regularly. A cleaning trick is to use vinegar as a fabric softener instead of actual fabric softener.


Just Jaime said...

Good to know!! We stored our washing machine for 2 years and it was reeeealllly nasty the first few times. We used bleach because we had a major problem

Also, HOT COLD means hot water when it fills and cold water when it rinses. My husband just taught me that a month ago

Susan Westberg said...

A little tip for the removable dispenser, if you pop it off and throw it in with a load of towels, it comes out sparkly clean!

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