Washing machines are one of the most essential yet underrated pieces of technology in many households. Without these handy appliances, you won’t be able to keep your clothes, beddings, curtains, and other fabrics clean and in good condition. Unfortunately, while washing machines have a valuable purpose to households, some homeowners tend to don’t pay much attention to maintaining and taking care of their washers. To get right into the discussion, here are five washing machine maintenance tips and tricks to keep your washing machine in tip-top shape:
1. Check for Clogs After Every Use
Improper draining of water is a prevalent issue in washing machines. This problem typically happens because homeowners forget to inspect the entire appliance before finishing the chore. If you’ve experienced standing water in your washing machine, it can root from two causes: an internal issue with the pump or clogging in the drain tube.
To identify the cause, try detaching the draining tube and blowing inside. If the blockage is still there, it’s worth calling a washing machine technician to fix the pump instead of opting for DIY solutions.
As a lesson, make sure to check your washer for clogs every time you use it. Not draining the water and allowing it to stand on the machine for too long will be a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and mold.
2. Avoid Underloading or Overloading the Machine
Teddy bear and her baby with protective mask about to be washed in the washing machine with resignation expression for possible infection by a coronavirus
A washing machine’s load capacity is one of the most important factors people consider when buying a new washing machine. The load capacity is specified by its manufacturer for a reason. Depending on the number of clothes you wash regularly, you should pick the right load capacity to prevent a handful of problems.
When your washing machine is underloaded, your clothes will accumulate on the drum’s side as it reaches its spin cycle. Since the load’s weight is concentrated only on one side, they’ll tend to bang against the drum, causing excessive vibrations that can hurt the machine in the long run.
Meanwhile, overloading your washing machine adds additional stress to the machine’s tub bearings and motor. The load also needs enough space to move around and allow the detergent to get distributed and clean your clothes properly.
3. Clean the Lint Filter Regularly
As for fabric spins and tumbles around your machine, the high heat and pressure in its environment cause your clothes, bedding, linens, and towels to shed fibers called lint. Although these fibers seem small, they can accumulate from different garments in the machine and potentially obstruct your vent hose. However, thanks to lint filters present in updated models today, this won’t be a problem.
However, the lint filter will eventually reach its capacity and you’ll need to clean them regularly to ensure they’ll do their job. Ideally, you should clean the screen for every batch of clothes.
Aside from preventing clogs, cleaning your lint filter regularly also offers the following advantages:
Lengthens the lifespan of your washing machine
Helps dry your clothes faster in the dryer
Reduce your energy costs
4. Use the Right Type and Amount of Detergent
When it comes to choosing a laundry detergent, perhaps everyone has their own preference. It turns out that your washing machine also has a say on which detergent to use.
Regular washing powders will suffice in semi-automatic washing machines, but you’ll need a special detergent for a fully automatic washing machine. Laundry detergents specified for fully automatic washing machines work better in the machine’s running conditions, involving the length of cycles, higher temperatures, and mechanical agitation levels.
If you’re using a top load washing machine, it’s recommended to use low-sudsing detergent as they work at high speeds. Using a detergent meant for handwashing will produce excessive sudsing.
Also, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how much detergent you’re using. Unknown to many users, using too little and too much detergent is among surprising ways of shortening a washer’s life.
5. Protect the Outside
Maintaining your washing machine means taking care of both its interior and exterior. Protecting the outside of your machine is relatively easy if you practice it as a habit every time you finish using it.
Once you’re done washing all your clothes, don’t close the door immediately to allow the machine to ‘breathe’ after use. Leave the door open for about 15 to 30 minutes to prevent moisture from getting stuck inside the machine that can encourage mold and bacteria growth.
Consequently, it’s important to protect the appliance by wiping any stains and spills using glass cleaner. Invest in a washing machine cover and avoid placing heavy items on top of the appliance.
Because of the bulky appearance of washing machines, owners may tend to ignore the special care and maintenance they constantly require. As a must-have appliance in your household, taking care of your washing machine will eventually pay off, as it’ll be a long time before you’ll need a replacement.