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How to clean mold from the washing machine best in 3 steps explained!

How to clean mold from the washing machine best in 3 steps explained! / Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay
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How to clean mold from the washing machine? – You have noticed mold where the freshness should be fragrant.

What you can do against mold in the washing machine, you will learn in the following article. 

 

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How to clean mold from the washing machine? Causes, Fight, and Prevent Mold!

Causes, Fight, and Prevent Mold
How to clean mold from the washing machine? – Causes, Fight, and Prevent Mold! / Image by bierfritze from Pixabay

Indeed, the horror is great when mold infestation is getting detected in the washing machine. There, where pure laundry is getting provided, disgusting mold has no place.

Mostly the detergent compartment is affected and possibly also the supply pipe and the rubber seals. Citric acid has proven to be very useful for removing mold in the washing machine.

 

1. What causes mold in the washing machine?

What causes mold in the washing machine?
How to clean mold from the washing machine? – What causes mold in the washing machine? / Image by Damian Sochacki from Pixabay

Mold is only getting killed at temperatures above 60°. Since most textiles are getting washed at low temperatures, mold can quickly spread in the washing machine.

In Summary:

  • If you do not allow the washing machine to dry sufficiently after removing the laundry, mold can develop.
  • A lack of adequate ventilation when the machine is not in use often leads to undesirable mold growth.
  • The lint filter is also sensitive. If it is not getting cleaned for a longer time, the lint in the remaining water will strive forward.
  • Often you can see mold first by the seals in the door or the detergent compartment.

Maintain and clean: In every particular and immaculate household, great importance is getting attached to hygiene in all rooms and cleaning laundry. Accordingly, a lot of time is invested in washing, cleaning, and the like until everything is sparkling and shiny. However, it is often forgotten that household appliances and cleaning devices should also be maintained and cleaned.

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So also the washing machine. Because if you don’t clean and maintain the washing machine regularly, it’s only a matter of time before mold will grow. It is not only unhygienic and disgusting; it also happens that the washing machine stinks. But why is the washing machine so susceptible to mold?

Lack of ventilation: It can primarily be explained by the moisture created when washing the laundry, whereby mold preferably forms in the detergent compartment, the drum, and the sealing rubber in the door, often in black deposits. The leading cause for the mold formation is to be found in the lack of ventilation of the washing machine, for example, when the device is closed after the washing cycle and remains closed. Since there is still residual moisture everywhere inside, a perfect breeding ground for mold is getting given.

Temperatures are too low: Another problem is that the laundry in modern washing machine models is often only washed at a water temperature between 30 to 40 degrees. Thanks to highly efficient and effective detergents and at the same time conserve energy, and the temperatures are too low for this to kill mold spores inside the machine. So the mold will not disappear either. The situation is different with the dishwasher, however. Here, the washing temperature is usually 50 degrees upwards so that the mold is loosened and washed away.

On the other hand, many consumers still think detergent or fabric softener’s choice can mold growth. However, this is an old myth that is far-fetched. Only a lack of care and ventilation of the washing machine can cause mold formation.

 

2. Fighting mold in the washing machine

Fighting mold in the washing machine
How to clean mold from the washing machine? – Fighting mold in the washing machine / Image by Antonio Cansino from Pixabay

The mold between the seals and the detergent compartment is usually only superficial, and it can easily remove it.

In Summary:

  • Put some vinegar in hot water and clean the affected areas thoroughly.
  • Then wipe with a dry cloth.
  • To permanently destroy mold spores, you can wash one wash load once a month in the cooking program. Alternatively, you can also use a descaler.

If you have found mold or black deposits in the drum, the detergent compartment, or the rubber seals, it is vital to remove them. But how? Below, you will find an overview of the best and most effective tips and household remedies with which you can remove the mold – guaranteed to help!

Let the door open: The most important rule to avoid mold formation is to always leave the washing machine door open after washing. It allows the residual moisture to dry out nicely and takes away the basis for mold. But there is not frequently enough space in the bathroom, the kitchen, the utility room, or wherever the washing machine is getting located so that the door can be open complete permanently. No problem, because even a small open gap is entirely sufficient for the moisture to evaporate. Think beyond that of the detergent compartment, which should be likewise open or wholly taken out in the washing machine’s retirement to dry out completely.

Mild cleaning agents: If mold has already settled down, the black deposits can usually remove it without any problems. Use a mild cleaning agent to clean away the stakes in the detergent compartment.

Cleaning with citric acid: If the drum or rubber seals are also affected by mold, a wash cycle with citric acid has proven effective. Get 500 grams of citric acid, which you can buy at the pharmacy or drugstore, for example, and start a wash cycle at 90 degrees. Germs and bacteria don’t stand a chance and are thoroughly getting eliminated.

No vinegar: You should not use vinegar, even though it is a popular household remedy. But since vinegar also has an aggressive effect on the washing machine’s metal parts, the damage can ultimately be greater than the benefit.

Dental Cleaner for Detergent Compartment: Dental Cleaner is also an excellent way to remove mold from the detergent compartment. It sounds a little strange, but it is useful. Dissolve a denture cleaning tab in a bowl or sink of hot water, and then place the detergent compartment in the water bath. Allow to work for a few minutes and then brush it off thoroughly, rinse it off and let it dry sufficiently.

High-proof alcohol: If the mold in the induction bowl is exceptionally stubborn, we recommend high-proof alcohol. With 2-propanol, also known as isopropyl alcohol or isopropanol, you should wipe the induction bowl thoroughly. But be careful: the intense smell of 2-propanol is reminiscent of a hospital, so it is best to keep the window open when cleaning and fighting mold.

Bottlebrush for inaccessible places: But mold can also form in areas in the washing machine that are difficult to access, such as in the area behind the induction bowl. You should take a look at this area now and then, and it is not uncommon for deposits to form here as well. To reach these, you can go for a long, narrow bottle brush that is getting dipped in water with detergent. Scrub the mold behind the detergent compartment thoroughly and vigorously, and then rinse with plenty of clean water. 

Do not forget the lint filter: Mould can also quickly form in the lint filter, which is why regular cleaning is firmly getting recommended because the fluff collected by the sieve finds paradisiacal conditions for mold growth in the damp environment. Even if the washing machine stinks, the problem’s cause is often getting found in a filthy lint filter.

 

3. Preventing mold growth in the washing machine

Preventing mold growth in the washing machine
How to clean mold from the washing machine? – Preventing mold growth in the washing machine / Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

With these tricks, you can prevent a new mold infestation.

In Summary:

  • Clean the lint filter and the detergent compartment regularly.
  • Always leave the door of the drum a gap open when the machine is not in use. With top loaders, keep the drum and lid open.
  • Opening the detergent compartment also helps ventilation.

If you have cleaned the washing machine from mold, this is only a stage victory. Because if you do not change your washing habits, the mold will come back sooner or later. It does not have to happen – at least if you follow these tips. These tips show you how you can effectively prevent mold in the long term.

Drying after washing: For mold to grow and spread, a humid climate is required, provided after each washing process due to a remaining low residual moisture content. Therefore, always leave the washing machine door open after washing – a gap is sufficient. It would help if you also pulled out the washing machine compartment a little or completely. It allows water to escape and evaporate and prevents mold growth.

Clean the detergent compartment: Take the trouble to regularly clean the detergent compartment to free any detergent and fabric softener residues; if you want to be on the safe side, clean after each wash cycle.

Run washing machines through hot: Nowadays, a low temperature of 30 or 40 degrees is sufficient to get your laundry clean. But such a low temperature is less helpful for hygiene and keeping the machine clean, as germs and bacteria are not getting killed. Therefore, it is best to run your washing machine every four to six weeks without washing at 60 or 90 degrees. It will also prevent the formation of mold.

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Use special washing machine cleaners: Although there are plenty of household remedies to combat mold, it is advisable to use special washing machine cleaners now and then as a preventive measure. These are effective, efficient, and ensure that germs and grease cannot settle at all.

Put the detergent directly into the drum: In the sense of mold prevention, it is getting recommended that liquid detergents be put directly into the washing drum. In the detergent compartment and the inlet, residues of the liquid detergent in gel form and fabric softener are usually getting left behind, providing an excellent breeding ground for mold. By adding directly to the drum, neither the detergent compartment nor the inlet will contact the liquid detergent. Of course, it does not harm the laundry if the detergent is added directly into the drum.

Clean the lint filter regularly: As already mentioned, it is in the interest of washing machine hygiene if the lint filter is emptied and cleaned regularly. It prevents the lint collected in the screen from forming mold and prevents the lye from being pumped out.

 

FAQ How to clean mold from the washing machine

How can you kill mold?

With a spray bottle filled with a spirit, you can fight small mold stains. Not only expensive unique products help against mold. Household products such as hydrogen peroxide or methylated spirits are also effective against mold stains.

How dangerous is mold in the washing machine?

Mould in your machine is not only very disgusting but can also be dangerous. After all, mold spreads further in the washing machine and deposits on the washed clothes. So you wear sweaters, pants or shirts with mold spores.

How do I clean the compartment in the washing machine?

Clean the detergent compartment - If the case is only soiled with the detergent residue, clean it with boiling water, then wipe it with a cloth soaked in household vinegar. If mold has formed, a more thorough cleaning with a sponge is necessary.

How does mold grow in the washing machine?

With modern washing machines, the detergent compartments can be removed entirely from the device and then cleaned thoroughly. The mold does not come from certain detergents or fabric softeners but the machine's heat and humidity.

What to do if the washing machine stinks?

Where a lot of stinky bacteria live, there will always be lousy scent! After the program ends, take the laundry out of the machine as soon as possible, wipe the rubber seals and grooves dry - and very importantly, leave the porthole or lid open and pull out the induction chamber so that the machine can dry.

What to do if clothes become moldy?

Remove small mold stains in the laundry by washing at 60 degrees and using a suitable detergent, if possible, with chlorine bleach. If not, soak the garment for about 30 minutes in hot water with heavy-duty detergent and then wash as usual.

Can moldy laundry be washed?

Put clothes with mold or stains in the washing machine immediately. A washing temperature of 60° C (or even higher) destroys mold. Delicate items that can only tolerate 30° or 40° C should wash according to the care instructions on the label, but more often.

 

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Conclusion:

Black deposits and an unpleasant smell lead to one conclusion: mold has formed in the machine. It can best be getting removed with various cleaning agents.

Vinegar is not an alternative, however, as it affects the seals and metals in the machine. Alcohols and citric acid are much more efficient. In contrast, preventing the formation of mold is quite simple.

It is best always to leave the door of the machine open so that getting it can be ventilated. Treatment with detergents is also getting recommended.

 

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