Mold in Washing Machine – How to Clean Your Washing Machine

clean mold in washing machine - Leaving clothes inside will grow mold in washing machine

In general, you can detect mold in washing machine by the odor. In some cases, the washing machine doesn’t smell, but the clothes do. If either happens, you should think about cleaning your washing machine.

How dirty can a washing machine get? Extremely dirty if it develops mold in the drum.

The danger with mold is not just the odor. If mold sticks to your clothes, it can affect your health. Inhaled toxic mold can cause a bunch of sicknesses that have symptoms like chronic fatigue, cold symptoms, flu-like symptoms, or even memory loss.

Notice how the symptoms can be very hard to diagnose? It’s important to keep your home clean by keeping your cleaning tools and machine sanitized. It’s essential to stay healthy especially at this time.

How Mold Develops

Damp and dark places develop molds because they are not exposed to sunlight on a regular basis. Indoor washing machines are susceptible to molds because they are usually placed in a corner with no ample sunlight. Even if the room has some sunlight, the washing and drying drums are usually not exposed to light.

The only solution is to regularly clean your cleaning machines. Ideally, you should clean up after every use. Cleaning after use will help you prevent mold accumulating in your washing machine.

Mold Prevention

#1. Sun exposure is a great way to prevent molds from forming in your washing machine. You can remove the agitator, clean it and let it dry under the sun.

#2. There are some Whirlpool washing machines with removable barrel/drum. You only need a screwdriver to detach it. Check your machine’s manual to see if the manufacturer recommends taking out the barrel or not.

If it’s not recommended in the manual don’t remove it even if it looks easy. Sometimes the barrel will be easy to remove but very hard to put back in. If you can’t remove it then just clean the insides of your machine with a detail brush set or home scrubber.

Here’s how to remove the drum from a top loader washing machine. Again, don’t do this if it’s not recommended in the manual as you might cause irreversible damage to your machine.

#3. Don’t keep your clothes in your washing machine. Take out your clothes immediately after you’re done. Some people will forget to take out the clothes which will cause them to smell. This contributes to mold growing even more inside the machine.

How to Clean Washing Machine Naturally

clean mold in washing machine

What you need.

  1. Scrub brush or home scrubber
  2. Vinegar (bleach can be an alternative)
  3. Water

Steps to Clean Frontloading Washing Machines

It’s easier to clean modern washing machines made in the last five years. They usually have a self-cleaning button. Buttons are labeled and you should easily find the right button to self-clean.

If your machine is not self-cleaning, you can follow the steps below using the highest cleaning settings.

Step 1: Make sure the tumbler doesn’t have any clothes inside
Step 2: Pour hot water in the machine
Step 3: Pour one or two cups of vinegar into the detergent tray (for cleaning & deodorizing)
Step 4: Push the clean button or use the highest cleaning setting
Step 5: Put water and run one cleaning cycle to rinse
Step 6: Let dry or repeat the steps as needed
Step 7: Clean the detergent tray
Step 8: Clean the door cover, seal and the machine exterior with a home scrubber soaked in vinegar
Step 9: Wipe it down with a dry, non-scratch all-purpose cloth
Step 10: Let it air dry or put it under the sun to dry

How to Manually Clean Frontloading Washing Machines

What you need.

  1. White vinegar
  2. Essential oil blend (optional)
  3. Empty spray bottle
  4. Rubber gloves
  5. Old cloth rag or home scrubber or scouring scrubber

If you still see water scum and mildew after using the cleaning cycle method, then follow these steps to get rid of the remains.

Step 1: Mix vinegar and essential oil (essential oil should make the solution smell less like vinegar)

Note: Vinegar smell will disappear fast so essential oil is just optional

Step 2: Spray the seal and the insides with the mix
Step 3: Pat down the vinegar with a home scrubber

Note: You can wipe the machine surfaces if you have a no-scratch home scrubber or no-scratch scrubber brush

Step 4: Let it dry

Warning: Watch out for molds when cleaning washing machines that have not been cleaned for a long time. Use a face mask.

Step 5: If your machine is moldy take a home scrubber cloth soaked in vinegar then wipe the mold away.

Step 6: Let the vinegar sit for a few minutes.
Step 7: Rinse after a few minutes
Step 8: Air dry or preferably dry under the sun

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