How to get rid of the smell in Washing Machine?

If your washing machine has started to smell, it is important to take action to clean it as soon as possible.

A smelly washing machine is not only unpleasant, but it can also cause your laundry to smell. There are a few simple steps you can take to get rid of the smell and keep your washing machine smelling fresh.

One way to remove the smell from your washing machine is to run a cycle with vinegar. Add a cup of vinegar to the wash cycle, and let the machine run through a full cycle. The vinegar will help to break down any build-up in the machine and remove the source of the smell.

If you want to get rid of the foul smell coming from your washer then this topic is for you. Let us understand the reason behind such causes and how to overcome these circumstances.

Why does my washer smell bad?

The main cause of a smelly washing machine is a build-up of mold and mildew, which can occur when the machine is not used regularly or when it is not properly cleaned.

There is always a higher possibility of accumulation of dirt, detergent residues, mold, mildew, and bacteria inside your washer.

Even the lint (tiny fibers from your clothes) may have been accumulated inside the washer. Over the period of time, if uncleaned, these lints attract mold & mildews and release a bad smell.

To prevent mold and mildew from taking hold, it is important to clean the washing machine on a regular basis, using a cleaning solution designed specifically for this purpose.

In addition, it is important to leave the door of the machine open after each use to allow air to circulate and prevent moisture from building up.

Also Read: How to troubleshoot a portable washing machine?

What areas of the washer need attention in smelly conditions?

It is very essential to identify the areas of the washer from where the smell is generated.

Lets me explain to you the common areas of a washer that is most likely to get affected and become a source of a foul smell.

Gasket seal

A gasket seal is located between the tub and the door.

Its purpose is to prevent water from leaking out of the washing machine, therefore considered an extremely important component in your washer.

Over time, With regular usage, the gasket seal can attract mold, mildew, and bacteria, thereby causing a foul smell.

The inner tub

The inner tub of your washer is the area where all these laundry activities are performed, hence the corners of the inner tub are prone to accumulation of the residues.

Detergent Dispenser

The detergent dispensers are attached inside the washtub, and this rarely gets the opportunity to completely dry out. Formation of mold, and mildews are a higher possibility.

Agitator or Impellers

Top loaders usually operate on agitators or the impellers for rotation and spinning activity during the wash cycle. The mold, mildew, and bacteria formation around the agitators are also one of the common causes of foul smell.

Also Read: How to clean the washing machine agitator?

Drain hose/pipe and the Sewage

A clogged drain pipe may be one of the causes, as it may not release the waste and the residues which over time releases a bad odor. For Sewage area inspection and cleaning, it is advised to call a plumber to avoid any accidental damage.

Electrical Components

At times you may notice a burnt smell from the washer. This can be possibly due to a burnt motor, a damaged drive belt, damaged dryer vent areas, or any other electrical parts of the washer. Do not try to manually fix them, just call the expert in such circumstances.

As you are aware of the common areas responsible for releasing foul smells, check out below for useful tips on alleviating the smell from your washer.

Also Read: How to use portable washing machine effectively?

How to get rid of the smell in Washing Machine?

Getting rid of the smell from your washer may become challenging if regular cleaning is not performed. Hence it is important that you clean the washer at regular intervals.

Let’s take a quick look at some easy remedies for removing the foul smell.

There are two ways to achieve this, one way to remove the smell would be to use a cleaning solution readily available online OR in a local store.

The other way is to come up with a home remedy (discussed below).

For a powerful homemade cleaning solution, you will need the below items.

Also Read: How to calculate washing machine capacity?

What you will need

  • White Vinegar
  • Lemon
  • Warm or slightly hot water.

Steps to clean and remove odor on Top-Loaders

  • Fill the washtub with warm or hot water in a one-third proportion (1:3) or fill it with a little less than half the washtub’s capacity.
  • Add 2 cups of white vinegar to the water and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice (you may squeeze one lemon into the solution).
  • Run an empty cycle for 10 to 15 minutes. Running the empty cycle for 15 minutes should be sufficient.

Note: Adding lemon to this solution will boost the cleaning process.

Wasn’t that an easy task?

Highly affected areas with mold, mildew and bacteria formation such as the agitator corners or the gasket rubber seals may need additional attention. Here you may use a spray bottle, mixed with warm water, vinegar, and lemon. A cleaning brush or a toothbrush can be very handy in order to achieve this.

Also Read: 11 Things you must know about High Efficiency laundry detergents

Steps to clean and remove odor on Top-Loaders

  • Mix 1 cup of white vinegar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice with warm water in the spray bottle. 
  • Let it mix well, once done start spraying the solution on the gasket rubber seal area, and inside the washtub wherever applicable.
  • Allow the solution to settle for a couple of minutes, and now start scrubbing slowly on the affected areas. Wipe off with a cloth and repeat the process if required to get the desired results.
  • Also, follow the same process to clean detergent and fabric softener compartments.
  • Once done with the above steps, run an empty wash cycle with vinegar. Simply, add some vinegar to the detergent compartment and run the clean cycle.

Also Read: 16 Things you must know about a Washing Machine Drum?

Final thoughts

Make sure not to use excessive detergents above the required quantity, and allow enough water to mix as per wash type.

Balancing the mixture well leads to less residue formation inside the washer during the wash cycle.

It is always a good idea to clean the washer at regular intervals to avoid constant foul smells. This also helps in maintaining the performance of the washer in the long run.

After every wash, it is a good practice to keep the door or the lid open for a while, as this allows the moisture out of the washer.

Visit our FAQ section for information on maintaining your washer.

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