Deep clean your washing machine in 7 steps

It washes all of our clothes but have you ever considered cleaning your washing machine? I’ve just taken a closer
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It washes all of our clothes but have you ever considered cleaning your washing machine? I’ve just taken a closer look at my 3-year-old washing machine and was shocked to find it is so filthy. I only wash clothes for two people, and nothing heavy duty, but still, the amount of gunk within the machine and around the lid makes you think twice about those “clean clothes” on the line.

So I set out to find the cheapest, easiest way to clean my washing machine, including the lint filter, the drum and the pipes.

After trying this, I was surprised how much fresher my clothes smelt! With no exaggeration, it was as if I had used a new washing machine. It sounds silly but I don’t remember the last time my clothes really smelt like the detergent or fabric softener, and this is likely due to how overworked and unclean the machine was.

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What you need:

  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Toothbrush (I used a grout brush)
  • Microfiber cloth

1. First thing’s first, I wiped away any dirt that I could myself:

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2. Next, I put the cycle on the hottest setting. I followed this with a litre of vinegar, followed by a cup of baking soda. I let it fill up but didn’t let it start washing (via a pause button):

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3. I then took out any removable parts such as the softener container and the lint catcher* – we’ll go more into that later.

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4. Using a toothbrush, I cleaned around the lid, the sides of the drum, and other hard-to-reach areas:

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5. After an hour, I closed the lid and let the machine clean itself. While it did that, I wipe and scrubbed the lid and the keypad:

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6. Give it one more hot wash with a litre of vinegar to clean away any residue loosened and left behind by the first cycle. Also, note this gunk under the lid. You can get that out with a toothbrush:

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7. How to clean lint collector

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The lint collector is usually quite noticeable, and on my machine, it was like a sort of pocket within the drum of the machine. If you can’t see it in there, it could be around the top of the tub and just needs to be pulled up, it could be inside the agitator, attached to the drain hose, or on the front panel.

Once you’ve found it, pluck off or throw out as much as of the lint as you can. This should be fairly easy. The hard part is getting all the little bits off. I had to give mine a soak in hot water for 15 mins then used the toothbrush to scrub off the remaining fluff.

All clean!

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If in doubt on how to clean your machine properly, see the manual. If you don’t have the manual, most are online so you can simply Google search the model number.

Tell us, have you washed your washing machine lately? What other tips do you have?

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