How to Clean Your Washing Machine Part Two: Monthly Maintenance

After writing my How to Clean Your Washing Machine: Part One article on daily and weekly maintenance, I have been really on my game keeping on top of my washing machine. I am still guilty of not switching loads as promptly as I should, but with a busy family it’s important that I just try my best in this department. How have you been doing?Now it’s time to talk about monthly maintenance. Monthly maintenance doesn’t take much hands-on time and it just a matter of staying on top of doing it on a regular basis. I actually remember getting a sample of Affreshwhen we bought our washing machine a few years back and although I thought it was a neat product, didn’t completely understand what it offered.After going through two months of maintenance with Affresh I can say that it is the easiest, fuss-free way to thoroughly clean your washer. I will note that is it not the cheapest choice on the market if you compare it to vinegar or bleach, but it can cut down on additional cleaning or appliance maintenance that may result when using products that don’t reach all the parts of the washing machine. I didn’t realize until this review since my Clean Washer selection on my washer even says Bleach Only, and although I rarely have bleach in my home, figured bleach or vinegar would do the trick.
Monthly Routine

1. Clean the interior drum and hosingof the washer. A product will need to be used to reach all of the un-reachable places, so although bleach, vinegar or similar products may be used, keep in mind that these will be drained early in the wash cycle so won’t reach all of the parts of the washer. Affresh tablets are a product specifically made in a tablet form so that it lasts through the duration of the cycle and has the opportunity to produce oxygenating bubbles that foam up to clean throughout the hosing as well.You can clean the interior drum with a couple cups of vinegar or lemon juice, but whatever product you use, you will want to use the hottest temperature setting when cleaning your washing machine to ensure build up stains and odors have a chance to be zapped away.  Note: if you use cold cycles on a regular basis you may need to do more frequent drum maintenance, because although cold water can wash clothing just fine with the right detergent, residue will not dissolve as well on a cold setting.2. Wipe down the inside drum, rubber lip and door to get all of the remaining residue off of the reachable places after the cleaning cycle is complete. Affresh Grit Grabbers are a product made specifically for this task in front-loading HE machines, but a textured or microfiber cloth may also do the trick. Remember you should be wiping down the rubber lip and door during the week, so this is a step specifically recommended to get the remaining residue that may be lifted up after a monthly cleaning regimen.

3. Remove and scrub down the detergent and fabric softener dispensers in the sink then dry thoroughly before putting them back in place. While these are drying and the cleaning cycle is running, you can make sure your hosing is snugly in place so you don’t have any leaks or other issues and check to see if your washer feet are properly balanced to avoid unnecessary jiggling during a cycle.

4. Repeat once a month. I personally believe that even cloth diaper users can limit their monthly maintenance to once a month with a products like Affresh if they follow the daily and weekly maintenance. If you choose to use vinegar, bleach or another product approved by your manufacturer, you may want to clean your washer twice a month and keep in mind if any odor issues evolve over time, it may be coming from the hosing you cannot reach.

Below is a video from Affresh about their product, but I like how it explains how the product works and why it is necessary to clean your washer. So whatever product you choose to use, this video clip can be informative in outlining what parts of the washer need to be cleaned.

 
 
“I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of affresh and received product samples and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.”

photo by: T Gibbison
{If you enjoyed reading How to Clean Your Washing Machine Part Two: Monthly Maintenance I would be tickled pink if you left a comment. To read more about my green(er) parenting aspirations, advice and adventures be sure to subscribe to my RSS feed or get updates via email.}
Emi

Emi

By Emi Stapler. I am a cloth diaper advocate, green parenting blogger, mother of three and a military wife who enjoys sharing my motherhood adventures and advice. Follow me at The Cloth Diaper Report on Facebook, Twitter @TheCDReport , Google +, Pinterest and Instagram.
Emi
Emi

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  1. [...] biggest challenge that I can avoid by following steps 1 and 2, and doing a weekly wipe down.  In How to Clean Your Washing Machine Part Two I will discuss the monthly maintenance of cleaning the detergent dispenser, inside drum and other [...]

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