A clean washing machine not only makes your laundry smell fresh and clean, but it also extends the lifespan of your machine itself. Top loading washing machines are notorious for collecting dirt, grime, and even mold, so it’s essential to keep them clean to avoid these unpleasant side effects. In this article, we’ll go over how to clean a top loading washing machine with a few simple materials and techniques. This guide is for anyone looking to keep their washing machine functioning properly and their clothes smelling clean and fresh.
II. Why You Should Clean Your Top Loading Washing Machine
When it comes to washing machines, most people assume that the detergent and water they use to wash their clothes is enough to keep the machine clean. However, over time, dirt, dust, and soap scum accumulate inside the drum, leading to unpleasant odors and mold. In addition to these, a dirty washing machine can also cause your laundry to come out less fresh and clean than you might expect. Keeping your washing machine clean not only improves the quality of your laundry but also extends the lifespan of your machine.
III. Tools and Materials Needed to Clean a Top Loading Washing Machine
To clean your top-loading washing machine, you will need the following items:
- White vinegar
- Baking soda
- Essential oils (optional)
- Cleaning tablets
- Microfiber cloth
- Lint roller
These items are relatively easy to find and affordable to purchase. You may already have some of them at home.
IV. Different Methods for Cleaning a Top Loading Washing Machine
Let’s go over some of the most effective cleaning methods for your top-loading washing machine and give step-by-step instructions for each:
Vinegar and Baking Soda Method
- Fill your washing machine with hot water and add one cup of white vinegar.
- Let the machine run for a few minutes, and then add half a cup of baking soda.
- Let the machine run again for a few minutes. You should see some bubbles as the baking soda gets to work removing dirt and grime.
- Stop the machine and let it sit for 30 minutes to one hour.
- After an hour, let the machine run through a complete wash cycle.
- Run a second cycle with hot water only to remove any remaining residue or odor.
Essential Oil Method
- Add 10-15 drops of essential oil to a cup of white vinegar and mix well.
- Add the solution to your washing machine and run a full hot cycle. The essential oils will help to remove any odors and freshen up your washing machine.
Cleaning Tablet Method
- Purchase a washing machine cleaning tablet, such as Affresh, Tide Washing Machine Cleaner, or OxiClean Washing Machine Cleaner.
- Place the tablet in the washing machine drum and run a hot cycle.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use, as the tablets may have different guidelines depending on the brand.
Other Natural Cleaning Agents
If you prefer to use natural cleaning products, other elements such as lemon juice, citric acid, and borax can also work well to clean up your washing machine. However, use these with caution as they can be abrasive and harsh.
V. Common Mistakes to Avoid While Cleaning a Top Loading Washing Machine
While cleaning your top-loading washing machine can be a straightforward process, there are a few mistakes to avoid:
- Using too much cleaning solution: Using too much vinegar or other cleaning solutions will only lead to excess residue being left behind in your machine.
- Pouring cleaning solutions directly onto the drum: Instead, mix the cleaning solution with hot water in a separate container before adding it to the washing machine.
- Using abrasive materials: Avoid using abrasive materials like steel wool or abrasive sponges that can scratch your machine’s surface.
- Not cleaning the exterior: The exterior of your washing machine needs cleaning as well. Make sure to wipe it down with a damp cloth to remove any dust or grime.
VI. Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Top Loading Washing Machine Clean Long-Term
Keeping your washing machine clean over time takes more than just an occasional deep cleaning. Here are some tips to help you maintain a clean washing machine:
- Wipe down the drum after every use: A simple wipe-down of the drum after every use can prevent soap scum and dirt from accumulating.
- Clean the lint filter regularly: A clean lint filter can help your washing machine run smoothly and avoid clogs.
- Run a cleaning cycle every few months: A monthly or bi-monthly cleaning cycle with hot water and vinegar can go a long way in preventing buildup and odors.
Cleaning your top-loading washing machine should be a part of your routine cleaning regimen. A clean machine not only helps your laundry smell fresh and clean but also prolongs the lifespan of your machine. By using some natural cleaning solutions and avoiding common mistakes, you can easily keep your washing machine sparkling clean—and your clothes smelling fresh.
Don’t forget to follow our maintenance tips to keep your washing machine in top condition for years to come.