Why does my washing machine smell?

A washing machine is an essential piece of electronic equipment in every home. It not only saves you time and energy but also helps you to maintain your hygiene. But what if the machine itself is in unhygienic condition?

You don’t want your washer to smell like rotten eggs or sewer. Your laundry is supposed to smell with a comforting fragrance. But due to the stinky smell of the automatic washer, all your clean clothes have absorbed the foul smell.

If this is the condition, then your machine needs a thorough cleaning. This article will walk you through the causes of such stinky smell, how to get rid of such conditions and what are the preventive actions to avoid such bad conditions.

So why does my washing machine smell bad?

Why does my washing machine smell so bad?

why does my washing machine smell

Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Like Mildew or Mold?

Places with moisture and wet conditions are bound to smell bad if proper cleaning is not done regularly. Most of the time, a washing machine is filled with water, detergent, soap, bleach which get stuck on the outlet and rubber door gasket.

Mold, bacteria, and mildew find such places perfect for their growth.

The main causes of washing machine smell are accumulating bacteria, mildew, soap scum, or limescale — or some amalgamation of all these. Especially the highly efficient front-loaded washing machines are prone to this problem. The residue of the moisture and detergent or fabric softener makes the washer a perfect home for mildew, mold, and bacteria.

Without regular cleaning and airflow, these generate a foul smell in the laundry machine.

Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Like Rotten Eggs?

The gas which smells like a rotten egg is chemically known as Hydrogen Sulfide.

If your washer is smelling like a rotten egg, this means hydrogen sulfide is getting generated inside your laundry machine. The probable cause may be the generation of microorganism which releases this gas.

Other possible reasons are a natural gas leak or a sewer issue.

Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Like Sewer?

Often your washing may smell like a sewer, and there are two possible reasons – the accumulated bacteria releasing Hydrogen sulfide gas or there is a plumbing issue that is causing the sewer gas to get inside the washer.

The latter one is more dangerous as it is inflammable and injurious to health.


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Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Bad: Eliminate the 3 Causes of Smell 1

How do you get rid of washing machine smells?

Now you have identified that this is the high time to give your washer a much-needed thorough cleaning.

Before calling the repair guy, roll up your sleeves and start using the simple techniques to clean the stinky washer.

Cleaning with Vinegar:

Front-loaded machine:

Step 1: Most of the advanced front-loader cloth washer has a cleaning cycle option. As a first step, use this cleaning cycle. If your machine doesn’t have this, start the warm water setting.
Step 2: Get ¾ cup of white distilled vinegar and pour it inside the bleach dispenser.
Step 3: After the laundry machine completes its cycle, run the rinse cycle one more time
Step 4: Clean the inside of the machine with a microfiber cloth or towel
Step 5: Clean the bleach and fabric softener dispensers with warm water and replace them after they dry properly
Step 6: Take out the rubber door gasket and clean it with a soft cloth and plain white vinegar. After cleaning, dry it with a dry cloth.

Top loaded machine:

Step 1: Use the hot wash cycle and start the longest cleaning cycle
Step 2: When the top-loading machine is filled with warm water, pour 4 cups of distilled white vinegar into the agitating water.
Step 3: Close the lid and allow it in the washer to agitate the water.
Step 4: After some time, open the lid and let the vinegar solution sit in the water for an hour.
Step 5: Close the lid again and allow the washer to complete the cycle.
Step 6: Once the cycle is completed, clean the inside thoroughly with a soft dry cloth.

Using baking soda and vinegar:

Step 1: Mix ¼ cup of baking soda and ¼ cup of water and put this mixture in the detergent’s container
Step 2: Pour two cups of white vinegar inside the drum and run the machine at deep cleaning and high heat setting mode.
Step 3: After some time, clean the inside part with the side of a sponge, dipped in a solution of one part vinegar, one part water.
Step 4: Rinse the machine with water and dry it with a clean microfiber cloth.

Using Commercial Washer Cleaner:

Nowadays, commercial washing machine cleaners are available, which are affordable and effective. Apart from removing the bad odor, these products are highly efficient in removing stains, suds, and residues. The procedure of using is simple.

  • Select the normal cycle with hot water mode to opt for the clean washer cycle.
  • Put a tablet of the commercial cleaner inside the laundry machine.
  • Let the washer complete the full wash cycle without laundry
  • After completion, dry the rubber door gasket and the machine with a soft towel

How to prevent a stinky washing machine?

However, cleaning your washer at a regular interval helps you to avoid generating nasty smells, but some simple regular habits and best practices work amazingly to maintain a fresh washing machine.

Clean the drainage:

First thing first, check the drainage system properly.

Remove the dirt from the poor drainage, fix it and thoroughly rinse the washing machine with clean water. In most cases, this can take care of the washing machine’s odors.

Use heated water:

You may need to change your cleaning habit as well.

To save energy and protect the delicate fabric, cold water is a perfect choice. But it is not capable of removing the residue. In this way, you are creating a breeding ground for the microorganisms.

Use hot water to run your last load and keep your washer clean.

Use appropriate cleaning products:

Most hi-tech machines, especially the front-loaded washers manufacturers, recommend the right detergent, fabric softener, and other products.

These are the most suitable agents to clean the laundry and keep the machine hygienic at the same time by producing fewer suds.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to get the best results.

Increase circulation

Proper airflow is highly needed to keep your washer dry and avoid generating microorganisms.

After removing the laundry properly, keep the door open for some time to let the moisture evaporate completely.

Clean the soap dispenser:

We often forget to clean the small places, which may be the real cause of the problem.

In this case, cleaning the soap dispenser with baking soda and water with the help of an old toothbrush can make a lot of difference.


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Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Bad: Eliminate the 3 Causes of Smell 1

Keeping smells at bay

Apart from keeping your washer neat, tidy, and hygienic, you can use some high-quality microfiber cloth to keep it clean all the time.

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