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How do I clean my washing machine?

(30 Posts)
80QuidYoniJob Thu 25-Apr-13 14:31:15

I've googled it and it mainly says to use bleach but I'm a bit weird about using bleach except in toilets and plug holes. White vinegar also came up alot but I don't have any.

Any other ideas would be greatly appreciated!

breadandhoney Thu 25-Apr-13 14:33:09

I've just come on to ask the same question! I went to put a load in mine and it STINKS! Hope someone knowledgeable comes along soon.

80QuidYoniJob Thu 25-Apr-13 14:35:55

Mine stinks too. That horrible mouldy smell! I've just done a load of washing but think I'll have to re do it as it smells. sad

Glitterspy Thu 25-Apr-13 14:38:10

White vinegar is the way forward - just shove a small glassful into the detergent drawer and run a 90/boil wash. It de-limescales the insides, too!

MolotovCocktail Thu 25-Apr-13 14:38:37

I clean mine on a 'maintenance cycle', which is an empty drum with the usual amount of liquid in the drawer, on a 90 degree wash. No bleach. No vinegar.

A friend of mine, who is a plumber, says that bleach added to maintenance cycles can damage in machine's pipes.

Remember to do this once every 6m and clean the machine's filter once every month.

Clean the inside glass with a warm soapy cloth and wash the drawers when they get mucky smile

MinnesotaNice Thu 25-Apr-13 14:41:58

I don't have any other suggestions other than what you've already googled. Vinegar does work well to get the smell out. Also, it is recommended to leave the door open whenever the machine is empty and not in use to let it air out. We had a some of mold in the seal and both bleach and vinegar (not at the same time) along with a couple of disinfectant wipes seem to have sorted it out.
BTW, you can through the vinegar in the fabric softener spot with a load of towels and it will soften the towels as well. No vinegar odor afterwards, I promise. smile

80QuidYoniJob Thu 25-Apr-13 14:43:19

Cocktail, I only have fairy non bio powder, no liquid, is that okay to use?

If not I'll just get some White vinegar and go with glitters idea. Thank you both. smile

80QuidYoniJob Thu 25-Apr-13 14:45:07

Sounds like White vinegar would be worth getting then.

StrangeGlue Thu 25-Apr-13 14:48:20

Put it on empty on its hottest setting I think

Caitycat Thu 25-Apr-13 14:51:27

Just bought a washing machine cleaner in the point shop that I'm planning to try, I figured it prob won't do any harm so will let you know the results!

80QuidYoniJob Thu 25-Apr-13 14:57:25

My hottest cycle is 95, it goes on for over 3 hours though!

breadandhoney Thu 25-Apr-13 15:10:45

Think ill give the white vinegar a go. I have a bottle inside for washing windows. I've tried running it empty on hottest cycle but it didnt do anything.

PigletJohn Thu 25-Apr-13 16:21:40

the grime is mostly a sludge of congealed soap, fabsoft and grease.

Vinegar and bleach don't remove it.

A hot hot hot wash with no powder (because you are trying to reduce the soap content) and a cup of washing soda will do it.

If you have a machine that reduces the amount of water automatically for small loads, fill it up with old cotton towels (preferably white ones that will not fade in the hot wash) because you want the hot cleaning water to reach (at least) the tide mark inside the drum. Some machines have a cleaning setting, check your instruction book.

If the water froths up and goes grey, that's the old soap sludge dissolvong. Do it again until it stays clean.

scrub out the soap drawer and its slot first, and empty the pump filter and wipe the grooves in the door seal after.

MolotovCocktail Thu 25-Apr-13 16:43:24

I wouldn't use powder OP - I thought powder is more likely clog the machine? That's why I use liquid, anyway smile Might for the vinegar a go myself in future, too.

MolotovCocktail Thu 25-Apr-13 16:44:15

'give' not 'for', whoops!

breadandhoney Thu 25-Apr-13 17:53:38

I have a question. Where would I find the filter? <thick> blush

Queenbee245 Thu 25-Apr-13 18:05:01

Filter will be at the bottom usually, behind a little panel, pull the panel off and untwist the cap, have a towel ready though because there's usually a bit of water in there

ilovepowerhoop Thu 25-Apr-13 18:25:49

liquids do not contain bleach so can cause a sludge build up in the machine. Powders do have bleach (apart from colour safe stuff) and help keep the drum cleaner.

Try some soda crystals on a hot wash and clean out the rubber seal and dispenser drawer and the bit the drawer fits into.

my filter is behind a removable kick plate on the front of the machine

PigletJohn Thu 25-Apr-13 18:36:19

the sludge also seems to be related to the cool washes which are now so popular, and are not so good at dissolving soap.

breadandhoney Thu 25-Apr-13 18:36:20

Thank you. I didn't even know it was possible to clean the filter so after 6 years of use I'm guessing it could be pretty grim.

PigletJohn Thu 25-Apr-13 18:42:14

if you have lost the instructions you can probably download them from the maker's website. You will need the model number.

4yoniD Thu 25-Apr-13 19:05:54

I would raise the towel to a dish or bowl, with another on standby. I get waaaaay more than a towels' worth of water out my filter.

PattieOfurniture Thu 25-Apr-13 19:13:43

Big cup of soda Crystals, in drum on hot wash. Voila!

PigletJohn Thu 25-Apr-13 21:02:31

our bosch has a tiny rubber hose next to the filter, so you can drain it out under control before undoing the cap.

If you have not had the cap off for some years, it might have stuck in place. Rubber gloves will help you grip, or in some cases a jar-opening aid. A new cap will only cost ten pounds or so if you break the old one, but it will be inconvenient not being able to use the washer until it arrives.

I only recently realised about the low water level with an empty machine only cleaning the bottom part of the tub.

looselegs Thu 25-Apr-13 21:44:42

We did ours last week-ran it empty on a hot wash-95 degrees-with a VERY SMALL squirt of washing up liquid in it. Worked a treat!

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