Ultimate Guide to Washing Machine Maintenance
A broken washing machine is not only an inconvenience but can also lead to water damage in your home. At Irwins Megastore, we believe that with a little TLC, you can ensure your washing machine stays in tip-top shape. With only a few simple maintenance practices, you can prolong your washing machine’s lifespan and avoid costly repairs. In this blog post, we'll share our tips to help you keep your machine running smoothly for years to come.
What You Need To Know About Washing Machine Maintenance
Regular cleaning is the foundation of a well-maintained washing machine. Removing lint, dirt, and detergent residue not only improves performance but also prevents unpleasant odours. We'll show you how to effectively clean the drum, filter, and detergent dispenser, leaving your laundry smelling fresher.
Before cleaning, please ensure that the washing machine is completely turned off and unplugged from the power source for safety.
Watch our latest video on how to keep your washing machine in tip-top shape:
Daily Washing Machine Care
A busy household uses a washing machine at least once a day, so it needs some daily care too.
Each day that your washing machine is used:
- Clean the outside of your washer with a soft, damp cloth and a mild detergent.
- To clean the washing machine drum: wipe down the drum with a damp cloth to remove any loose debris.
- For stubborn odours, mix equal parts water and white vinegar and scrub the drum using a soft brush.
- After a particularly busy laundry day, clean as above and then run a rinse cycle to remove any remaining residue.
- Finally, wipe the drum and exterior dry with a clean cloth.
- To allow air to circulate and moisture to evaporate, leave the door open. This will help keep your washing machine clean and fresh. However, if you have small children or pets, ensure that the open door does not pose any safety risks.
- Also, be sure to read your machine’s manual for any tips specific to the washing machine model that you have.
Weekly Washing Machine Care
At the end of a busy week of laundry, these quick tasks will help maintain your washing machine’s effectiveness.
- Clean the detergent drawer:
- Remove the detergent draw and soak it in warm, soapy water.
- Using a toothbrush or sponge, scrub away any residue
- Rinse thoroughly before reinserting.
- Remove lint from the washing machine filter:
- Consult your washing machine's manual to locate the lint filter.
- Once located, carefully remove the lint filter from its housing. It is usually a removable plastic or mesh screen.
- Rinse the lint filter under warm water and gently scrub away any lint or debris trapped on the filter. Make sure to clean both sides thoroughly.
- While the filter is drying, wipe the filter housing with a damp cloth to remove any lint or debris.
- Placing the filter back into its housing and ensuring it is securely in place.
- Inspect and clean the seal:
- Around the outer edge of the washing machine drum is a rubber seal (also called a gasket) that prevents leaks.
- Each week check around the seal and inner door for any dirt, grime, or mould.
- Wipe the seal using a cloth dampened with mild detergent and water.
- Dry thoroughly to prevent moisture buildup.
- Run a maintenance cycle:
- Check the washing machine's manual for instructions for a self-cleaning or maintenance cycle. Not all machines have this function.
- If you have a self-cleaning function available, run this cycle according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Monthly Washing Machine Care
Some washing machine maintenance can be done less often but are equally as important for maintaining wash efficiency.
Check the drain pump filter monthly.
- Refer to your washing machine's manual to find the exact location of the drain pump filter.
- Place a shallow container or a towel beneath the access area of the drain pump filter to catch water or debris.
- Slowly unscrew the drain pump filter in an anti-clockwise direction. Be cautious as water may begin to drain out.
- Carefully pull out the filter and remove any lint, hair, debris, or foreign objects trapped in it. Thoroughly rinse the filter under running water to ensure it is clean.
- Use a damp cloth or sponge to clean the inside of the filter housing, removing any accumulated dirt or residue.
- Place the filter back into its housing and securely screw it back in a clockwise direction. Ensure it is tight but avoid overtightening.
- Run a short test cycle to ensure there are no leaks and the machine is functioning properly.
Inspect your washing machine inlet and outlet hoses monthly.
- The inlet and outlet hoses are connected to the back of the washing machine.
- Examine the hoses carefully for any signs of wear, cracks, bulges, or leaks. Pay close attention to the areas near the connections and along the length of the hoses.
- Gently run your hand along the hoses to check for flexibility. If the hoses feel stiff, brittle, or excessively rigid, it may indicate deterioration and the need for replacement.
- Confirm that the hose connections to the washing machine and water supply are tight and properly secured.
If you notice any damage, leaks, or concerns with the hoses, it's best to replace them promptly.
How To Prevent Washing Machine Blockages
When a washing machine pipe becomes blocked it can lead to leaks and flooding in your home. But did you know that waste build-up from your washing machine can also cause plumbing issues in your home plumbing?
Avoid washing machine blockages and bunged-up plumbing with these easy tips.
- Keep the lint filter clean to prevent lint from accumulating in the drain pipes, reducing the risk of clogs and drainage issues.
- Before loading your clothes into the washing machine, ensure that all pockets are empty. Small items like coins, keys, tissues, or even hairpins can get lodged in the machine's drain pump or hoses.
- For delicate items that tend to shed fibres, such as socks, stockings, or lingerie, place them in a mesh bag. This helps prevent loose fibres from clogging the drain or filter.
- Follow the manufacturer's guidelines regarding the maximum load capacity of your washing machine. Overloading the machine can strain its components and increase the likelihood of blockages.
- Use high-quality detergent that is suitable for your machine and follow the recommended dosage. Using excessive detergent can create excessive suds that may clog the drain system.
If you notice anything unusual about your washing machine, such as noise or water leaks, contact a repairperson right away.
If you are looking to replace your current washing machine, take a look at our handpicked washing machine range. We have the latest models from the most respected brands instore and online at Irwins Megastore.