Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Keeping your front-loading washer clean and fresh....

I read a great article the other day in Real Simple magazine.  A reader asked the question, "Why does my front-loading washing machine smell like mildew?

We recently purchased a new washer for that very reason.  It smelled bad and I couldn't figure out why or how to fix it.  Our solution was to buy a new one.  I wish I would have known how to prevent this problem and then how to fix it if it did happen.

Here are the tips that were suggested in the magazine:

1-Don't use too much soap!  Front loaders use 1/3 of the amount of water of a regular washer.  If you put in too much soap, there won't be enough water to wash it away.  The residue left by the soap can result in mildew.  Make sure you use HE detergent and then only the recommended amount.  Less is actually more in this case.

2-Check to make sure your front-loader is level.  If the machine is not perfectly level, it could not be draining properly.  If you find this is the problem, then call a service man to adjust it.

3-Re-think using liquid fabric softener.  It has a waxy bas which sticks to the tub of the machine giving mildew a place to grow.  If you do choose to use it, use a VERY small amount. 

Quotes from Real Simple Magazine, "To get rid of the mildew odor, run an empty machine on the hottest setting with bleach or Affresh ($8, homedepot.com), a cleaner that deodorizes a washer's interior.  And after each load of laundry, leave the door ajar to allow the interior to dry." 

Many newer front loaders have a cleaning cycle also.

Good luck and I hope this helps. :)

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