How to Clean Portable Washing Machine? (Comprehensive guide)

Portable washing machines are a useful addition to any home.

They make doing laundry more comfortable and faster.

All you need is to throw dirty clothes inside, add soap, press a button, and wait.

After a few minutes, they will come out clean.

Since the Portable washing machine’s work is to clean clothes, one might think that it is unnecessary to keep it clean.

In reality, the dirt and odor from your outfits build up over time, and it can cause the machine to lose its efficiency.

The prolonged accumulation of dirt also provides a breeding ground for harmful organisms like bacteria and mold.

Besides, the accumulated dirt can also spoil the clothes you put in the washing machine.

This explains the importance of cleaning your portable appliance regularly.

So how do you clean a portable washing machine in an efficient and effective way?

The fastest and best way to clean a portable washing machine is by using vinegar and baking soda.

To clean your portable washer:

  • Simply add 2 cups of white cleaning vinegar to the detergent dispenser.
  • Fill the washing machine with water.
  • Run the empty cycle at the highest setting and temperature possible for 2-3 minutes.
  • Once the first cycle is completed, flush the water and wipe the inside of the drum.
  • Now add 1 cup baking soda to the drum and repeat the process.
  • When the cycle is completed, run an empty cycle on plain water (without baking soda or vinegar) so that baking soda and vinegar remains can be cleaned.
  • Wipe the inside of the drum and you are done.

Note: Never mix Vinegar and Baking soda together.

When cleaning your portable washer, it is advisable to start with the interior.

If you start with the exterior, the interior’s dirt could make the exterior murky, forcing you to start over the process.

Let’s get started with the comprehensive guide on cleaning your washer…

How to Clean the Interior of a Portable Washing Machine?

For safety reasons, ensure that your portable washer is unplugged from the power source before you start cleaning.

The appliance must also be empty to make sure that the cleaning process is effective.

Now start by, running a wash cycle with hot water without detergent or any other cleaning solution.

The next step involves adding your preferred cleaning solution.

You can choose either bleach or vinegar, as both are useful in removing calcium stains and soap scum.

However, bleach is more effective in killing bacteria and mold.

That said, you should never mix bleach with vinegar.

This is because a combination of the two produces chlorine, which causes breathing problems, burning, coughing, and watery eyes, even in low concentration.

After adding either bleach or vinegar, run the cycle for one minute to mix with the water.

Then, leave the machine idle for an hour to allow the cleaning solution to remove the grime.

Once this period elapses, use the rinse function on your device to remove the dirty water, followed by a clean water cycle.

When cleaning the interior, pay more attention to the rubber seal on the door and the soap dispenser.

The rubber seal area is prone to mold since water tends to get trapped between the machine and the seal.

Use a sponge dipped in a cleaning solution to remove any growth and then dry it using a paper towel.

The soap dispenser usually gets murky because of the clogging of dirt, traces of soap, and other debris.

To clean this area, use a cloth dipped in an all-purpose cleaner.

Although running a cleaning solution that eliminates most of the dirt, some stubborn stains might need additional effort.

In such cases, it would be best to dip a cloth in a concentrated cleaning solution, followed by a though scrubbing of the stained areas.

Avoid using abrasive cleaners or scouring pads since they can damage the machine.

READ: How to Hookup a Portable Washing Machine?

How to get the gunk out of your portable washing machine?

The information discussed above should work in most cases.

White Vinegar and Baking soda make an excellent fit to clear the gunk in an efficient way, in certain cases, the gunk can be adamant. If that’s the case, simply follow the below process.

For Top Loading washers

  • Take a sponge and dip it in water filled with vinegar.
  • Try to wipe off the gunk by manually reaching to areas you can.
  • Now add 2 cups of vinegar to the detergent dispenser.
  • Run the empty cycle at the highest temperature and highest setting for a few minutes.
  • Once the cycle completes, repeat the process with plain water.

We have a great video that shows how to clean the top loader efficiently. Here’s the quick video.

Note: Some manufacturers also provide their recommended cleaning solutions. Be sure to go through their user instruction manual as using Vinegar and Baking soda inside the warranty period may void the warranty, be sure to check that.

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For Front Loading Washers

  • Spray the Vinegar inside the drum, gasket, and inside part of the door.
  • Let the gunk loosen.
  • Wait for a few minutes and then soak the cloth with vinegar and water.
  • Use the cloth to wipe the gunk.
  • Next move to clean the filter – Remove the filter and rinse it clean.
  • Spray the vinegar on the detergent tray and wipe everything clean.
  • Wipe the inside part of the door.
  • Now put some vinegar in the laundry detergent tray and run a tub clean cycle or empty cycle at the hottest temperature possible.
  • Once all the above steps are completed, proceed to wipe off the exterior.

We have found a nice video that takes you through this entire process step by step, here it is:

Note: Be sure to check the manufacturer’s instruction manual before doing this as it may void the warranty.

Once you are done cleaning the interior, be sure to clean the lint filter as the lint filter may get dirty over time.

The process to clean the lint filter is fairly easy, simply follow the below process.

READ: Top Load Vs Front Load Detergents

How to clean the lint filter?

With most brands, by design lint filters can be found at the bottom.

Also in most user instruction manuals, you can find detailed step-by-step instructions to clean the lint filter.

Having said that, cleaning the lint filters can be very easy.

Simply detach the lint filter and wash it thoroughly under running tap water.

If the filter is in extremely bad shape, try to wash it using water and vinegar.

We have found a nice video that shows, how to clean the lint filter (This video is for front load washer, but the process to clean the filter remains the same).

Ok, once you are done cleaning the interior and the Lint filter, the next thing is to complete the final step.

The last step is to clean the exterior.

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How to Clean the Exterior of a Portable Washing Machine?

Besides making your laundry room hygienic, cleaning the exterior of your portable washing machine helps remove the dirt that falls off your clothes and detergent residue.

Like the interior, you must start by unplugging the appliance from the main switch to prevent electrocution.

Then, turn off the inlet faucet that supplies water to the machine.

Once you cut the water supply, boil water, and add either vinegar or bleach to form a cleaning solution.

Soak a cloth into the mixture and use it to remove dirt and stains on your washing machine’s outer surface.

If you wish to, you can add a washing detergent to make the work easier.

The last step involves cleaning the pipe connections and corners of your washing appliance and leaving it to dry.

Remember to open the lid to ensure that the interior dries too.

READ: How to Use a Portable Washing Machine Effectively?

How to Prevent Bad Odor Buildup in Your Portable Washer?

The most effective method of preventing the buildup of unpleasant smells in your washing machine is by keeping the door open when it is not in use. Closing the door after use traps moisture inside, providing the ideal breeding conditions for bacteria and mold that cause the foul odor.

On the other hand, opening the door allows the water to evaporate and keeps your appliance fresher.

Another way of ensuring your machine remains fresh is by removing your clothes immediately after washing.

Leaving your wet outfits inside for an hour can lead to the growth of mold and bacteria.

These organisms make your machine less effective, and your clothes smelly.

Lastly, you can use scented detergent or lemon juice whenever you clean your washing machine.

The pleasant fragrance produced by these products will keep your washer fresh and appealing.

If you are still facing issues with Odor even after following the above steps, we would recommend you check our troubleshooting guide, it covers other aspects of issues commonly faced by many users.

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Maintaining the Cleanliness of a Portable Washing Machine

While cleaning your machine is mandatory in maintaining its effectiveness, it is a tedious and time-consuming process.

Nobody wants to do it every other time.

The best way to keep your machine tidy is by emptying it immediately after use.

As mentioned above, damp clothes cause foul odors and promote the growth of bacteria and mildew.

Additionally, always keep the lid open to facilitate evaporation and prevent the breeding of bacteria.

More importantly, ensure that you use the machine for its designated purpose.

Some people use these appliances to clean backpacks, sneakers, jackets, toys, and so forth.

Though these items might fail to cause noticeable damage at first, they can destroy the machine after extensive use.

READ: What is RPM in Washing Machine?

How Often Should You Clean Your Portable Laundry device?

It is crucial to regularly clean your washing machine, the same way you do to other domestic appliances like dishwashers, microwaves, and refrigerators.

The frequency at which you wash your device depends on how much you use it.

In an average household, the recommended frequency is twice monthly.

Keep in mind that regular cleaning extends your machine’s lifetime and prevents the accumulation of mold and unpleasant odors.

Hope we have answered the query 🙂

If you have more questions, there are high chances that they may have already been answered in our Portable Washers FAQ section.

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