If you’ve ever had to visit a laundromat or use coin-operated laundry of any kind, then you know just how great of a luxury it is to have your very own front-loading washing machine right there in your home. However, this great convenience can turn into a great inconvenience if not maintained properly.
In this week’s installment of our Mold Matters series, we take a look at what can be lurking in your luxurious front-load washing machine. Yes, it’s true. Ironically, mold CAN grow in the one appliance that was purchased to keep the clothes you and your family wears clean.
Finding mold is the first step to getting rid of it. We noted in last week’s installment of the Mold Matters series that mold can rear its ugly head in your chimney. As we continue our Mold Matters series, we take a look at front-load washing machines and what you can do to make sure the appliance and your clothes are clean and safe.
As you can imagine, with all of the wetness and residue from detergents and fabric softeners, front-loading washing machines can easily build-up molds and become smelly, and of course, you’d like to avoid that at all costs.
Thankfully, it’s not hard to get rid of the mold or to keep it from accumulating. Below are some tips to avoid mold growth in your washing machine.
1. Clean Gaskets
The gasket is the large rubber seal that keeps water from leaking out of your front loader. Underneath that flap is a great place for mold to live, so be sure to give that a good cleaning every once and a while.
2. Clean Dispensers
You can also clean out the dispensers where you pour your detergents to make sure there’s no leftover soapy residue.
3. Use Bleach
To clean the inside of the drum, try running a cycle without any clothing using bleach in the place of detergent. That way, you’re sure to get a deep down clean all along the inside of the washing machine.
4. Leave Door Ajar
As a precaution, you can leave the door to the washing machine open so that everything dries out much faster. The less moisture, the less mold there will be!
5. Choose Your Detergent Carefully
Choosing a detergent with less foaming power will limit the amount of soap residue left behind. Try using powder detergents over liquid ones for less suds.
6. Use Less Detergent
Using less detergent in general will also help out. If you only use the amount recommended for each load size you’re better off. (Because you all know we’re guilty of just pouring an amount inside of the cap without really measuring!)
7. Skip Fabric Softener
Less fabric softener means less residue and mold accumulation. A dryer sheet can get your clothes just as soft, and help with the mold issue, as well. Plus you’ll save money. That’s a win-win!
No one wants to deal with a moldy washing machine. Following the above tips will lessen the likelihood of mold growth. It’s important to note that leaving your clothes in the washing machine for an extended period of time also opens a major opportunity for mold growth.
In addition, any leaks coming from your washing machine can lead to mold issues as well. Make sure you provide routine maintenance to prevent mold from spreading to the floor and walls.
There are so many cracks, creaks and crevices where mold can hide. In our next installment of our Mold Matters series, we’ll take a look at the potential of mold growth around your window sashes and seals.
If you are concerned about mold growth in and around your front-load washing machine, contact the experts at Sage Restoration.