Cleaning the Washer and Dryer
How to Clean the Washer and Dryer
We just want the washer and dryer to clean our clothes.
They wash and dry faithfully, day after day without us giving them a second thought.
It’s inconvenient when your washing machine or dryer breaks or starts performing poorly, but it’s even more annoying to find out it’s something you could have prevented.
Well, now it’s time to give these essential appliances a little love from Mrs. Clean. Here are some easy cleaning tips to keep your washer and dryer cleaning great, and help to prolong the life and efficiency of these time saving appliances.
Cleaning the Washer:
- Wipe the exterior of the washer using a soft towel along with a mild cleaning solution of soap and water.
- Clean the top of the lid and underneath the lid of the washer with a damp sponge
- If a load of clothing is really grimy and there is residue left from the dirt, grime or laundry soap, wipe it clean with a damp cloth before the scum dries on the inside of the washer basin.
- If the washing machine comes with a lint trap, clean it out after every washing. If debris has built up you can run it under a faucet.
- If you don’t have a lint trap, adding one to the machine will prolong its life and reduce lint in the dryer and on your clothes.
- Periodically clean out the bleach and fabric softener dispensers. Do this before they look dirty or have condensed gunk built up.
- If the washer is setup to empty in to a large utility or laundry sink, make sure there’s a strainer in the drain. Depending on your water the type of debris on your clothing you might need to pour a little drain cleaner into the p-trap to keep the pipes running freely. If the pipes get clogged, you could have a very serious problem if water from the washing machine overflows to the floor.
- Get rid of mold and mildew odors by running the machine empty with hot water and about 1 cup of bleach. Don’t use more bleach than this because bleach damages rubber gaskets and makes them brittle.
- Fabric softener built up on the inside of the tub can be removed by running a empty washer with 2 quarts of plain white vinegar and hot water.
- For those who have well water or hard water caused by excess minerals and they have built up on the inside of the machine, you should check with the washing machine manual from the manufacturer for suggestions. Running a cycle of hot water and 1 gallon of vinegar may help to dissolve mineral deposits without having to purchase commercial hard water removers. You may need to let the washer sit full with the vinegar and water solution for an hour before running the machine to allow the vinegar time to dissolve the mineral deposits.
Keeping the Washer Clean:
- Consider purchasing and installing a lint trap for your washer if you have a septic system and a lot of pet hair or other debris in your clothes.
- If your washing machine moves or “walks” during cycles, balance it with the adjustable legs underneath .
- Change out the hoses connecting your washer to the water sources (hot and cold) every 3-5 years. These hoses can split if they get old, causing a serious flood.
- Periodically check hose connections to make sure they are tight to prevent leaks.
- Leave your washer lid open when it’s not in use to avoid getting a funky smell in the washer.
- If your bleach dispenser cup is removable, take it out and clean off the residue. If not, use a pipe cleaner or a scrub brush to get out any residue.
- Clean your fabric softener dispenser periodically if you have one.
- If you have hard water, install a water-softener or use a laundry water softener as hard water can easily damage your machine.
Cleaning the Dryer:
- Take the detachable lint trap out of the dryer. Run it under the faucet or use the crevasse tool from the vacuum cleaner to remove any stuck on or embedded pieces of lint from the trap.
- Use the vacuum and vacuum up all dust, lint and debris that have settled on the floor under the dryer, and behind it and along the walls.
- Use a damp mop to clean the floor and remove any remaining traces of lint and dust. Let the floor air dry.
- Clean the dryer duct going into the wall and vacuum up any lint that is visible.
- Clean the duct on the outside where it exits the home and make sure the vent flaps are moving properly and are not being blocked by lint.
- Use a clean damp sponge and wipe down out outside of the dryer and the dryer lid.
Keeping the Dryer Clean:
- Clean the lint filter in your dryer every single time you use it.
- If the lint filter gets clogged with dust and debris, run it under a faucet.
- Detach the dryer lint duct and clean it out every year – this will prevent fires AND make your dryer work faster – you can usually do this with a vacuum hose.
- Replace the dryer lint duct every 2-3 years
- Don’t overload the dryer – it makes the dryer have to work too hard and too long.