Top load washers are a popular choice for many homeowners, thanks to their affordable price and large capacity. While these washers are fairly easy to use, they can also be a breeding ground for bacteria and dirt if not cleaned properly. Follow these five tips to keep your top load washer clean and functioning properly.
5 tips for cleaning your top load washer
1. Keep your top load washer clean by following these five simple tips:
-Clean the seal and gasket regularly with a damp cloth to prevent mildew buildup.
-Remove any excess detergent or fabric softener from the dispensers after each load. These products can cause build-up over time and affect the performance of your washer.
-Run an empty cycle once a month with hot water and bleach to clean the interior of your machine.
-Wipe down the outside of your washer with a damp cloth to keep it looking new.
-Remove any lint or fuzz from the lint screen after every load. This will help prevent clothes from getting caught in the screen and will keep your machine running efficiently.
1. Sanitize your top load washer
If you have a newer top-load washing machine, it probably has a sanitize cycle. This cycle uses hot water and a bleach or other disinfectant to kill bacteria and get rid of any grime or dirt. If your washer doesn't have a sanitize cycle, you can create your own mixture that will clean and disinfect your washer. Just mix 1 cup of bleach with 1 gallon of hot water. Pour this mixture into the washer and let it run through a complete cycle. Be sure to wipe down all surfaces of the washer when the cycle is finished. You can also use a solution of hot water and white vinegar to clean your top-load washer. Just put equal parts vinegar and water into a spray bottle and give all surfaces a good spritz. Let the solution sit for a few minutes, then wipe it away with a damp cloth.
2. Clean the detergent dispenser on your top load washer
If your washing machine has dispensers for detergent, bleach, or fabric softener, these dispensers or the compartments that hold them can be a magnet for gunk and grime. To clean them, take a hot washrag to these areas as well. If they're particularly difficult to reach, an old toothbrush can be a handy tool to reach difficult nooks and crannies.
3. Clean the filter on your top load washer
Keeping your top load washer clean is key for ensuring optimal performance and avoiding any nasty build-up. To clean it, start by removing the filter and using a soft brush to clean off any build-up. If you can, remove the screen and let it soak in boiling water for 15 minutes before placing it back into the washer. You should also check your manual to see if your machine has any other areas that need to be cleaned. Regularly cleaning your top load washer will help keep it running smoothly—and who doesn't want that?
4. Clean your washer basket
4. Clean your washer basket: If your washer basket has developed stains or discoloring, vinegar and baking soda may not be enough to thoroughly clean it out. In this case, you can use a quart of chlorine bleach to sanitize it in the same way as the tub. Just make sure not to include any clothing in this cycle, as it will damage them.
5. Wipe down the outside of your washer
Many people don't think to clean their top load washer--possibly because it's not as visible as the front-loading kind. But over time, the build-up of soap scum, detergent splashes, and just general dirt and grime can take its toll. Use a clean cloth and some hot soapy water to give the machine a good wipe down. Be sure to get into all the nooks and crannies, and don't forget to pay special attention to the door seal.
Other washing tips
Now that you know how to clean your top-loading washing machine, here are a few extra tips to keep it running smoothly. First, it’s important to know that if you don’t clean your machine on a regular basis, you might find suds overflowing from your washing machine, creating moisture where you don’t want it, which can cause mildew. This is an especially important step to take just after your cycle finishes, for at least an hour or so. Secondly, if you have a front-loading washing machine and/or a water softener in your home, you should run an empty cycle every few weeks with vinegar added to the rinse cycle. Finally, if you have a top-loading washing machine and live in a hard-water area, add 1/2 cup of baking soda to the wash cycle every month to help soften the water and keep your machine clean.
Top load washers have come a long way in terms of design and functionality, but even the best ones need a little TLC every now and then. Follow these 5 simple tips to get your top load washer clean and running like new again.
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