There’s nothing quite like the smell of fresh washing. However, even though front load washers are great when saving water and energy and they have a faster spin, they can become smelly.
There are many reasons as to why this happens and it’s not only annoying when it does happen, but it can make your washing smell far from fresh.
- Why does a front load washer smell?
- Consumer user error
- Ways to prevent a smell
- Don’t use as much detergent
- Don’t close your door if there isn’t a wash on
- Stick to a cleaning routine
- How to clean front load washer drum
- What to do when you notice a smell
- How to combat the bad smell
- Get a cleaning and maintenance routine
- Unclog drains
- Check for faulty parts
- Call a professional
- Tips to improve front load washer smells
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Why does a front load washer smell?
Your front load washer can smell for a variety of different reasons, including;
Consumer user error
It’s not that when you have your front load washer and you bring it home, you don’t know how to use it, but there are times when individuals will purchase a front load washer and not know how to take proper care of it, including how to clean it.
This knowledge would be able to inform you of how to take proper care of your front load washer and what to do in regards to cleaning it and general maintenance.
When you use your washing machine and take your nice smelling clothes out, you may have noticed that there is a rubber gasket right at the front by the door.
This rubber gasket catches anything that may have come out of pockets or any hairs that are attached to clothes. It also gathers the water that hasn’t gone down the drain during the wash.
This means that it is the breeding place for mold and bacteria to grow. If you’re noticing more of a mildew smell than a sewage smell, then you’re better off looking at that rubber gasket for mold. However, if there is quite a big build up of it, it may be impossible to get rid of the odor.
Ways to prevent a smell
Thankfully, there are ways in which you can prevent your front load washer from smelling in the future.
Don’t use as much detergent
You might think that in order to get your clothes smelling fresher and stronger, that you should use more detergent. However, doing this will cause an array of issues, including a smell. If you’re using too much detergent then this can create a build up.
Your detergent amount that you use per load should depend on the size of the load, the machine you’re using.
The hardness of your water supply, the soil level of your clothes and the concentration of the detergent.
Most front load washers are High Efficiency which is usually indicated by the “he” symbol on the washer itself. You should only be using 2 tablespoons of detergent per wash.
Don’t close your door if there isn’t a wash on
One of the biggest and easiest mistakes you can make is shutting your front load washer door after using it. When you leave the door slightly open, this will allow the water to evaporate, making it harder for mould and mildew to grow.
After every wash, grab a tea towel to dry off the gaskets. It’s also best to leave the soap dispenser open too, because there might be a build up of mildew in there too, which can cause a funny smell.
Stick to a cleaning routine
You should be performing a clean cycle on your washer 1-3 months. You may see an option on your washer that states “Clean washer with Affresh” which is a cleaning tablet that dissolves during the process.
Remove and clean the soap dispenser regularly in order to prevent any build up and clean the gaskets once you’re done after every wash.
You can choose to either remove the gasket or grab a tissue and wipe in between the gasket to remove any build up.
How to clean front load washer drum
You might find that it’s your drum that smells. If this is the case then luckily, there are ways in which you can clean it.
- Take ⅓ cup of baking soda and put in the empty drum
- Grab 2 cups of white vinegar and pop it in the detergent tray
- Run a regular wash with hot water or a cleaning cycle
- If you continue to have a build up of mildew, pour 2 cups of bleach in the dispenser and run a second wash cycle
What to do when you notice a smell
When you notice a smell, you can either choose to do things your way and do the DIY or call a professional who can tell you exactly where the smell is coming from. Either way, the problem will most likely get fixed.
There are times when the smell could be coming from the pipes that are laid into the wall to get rid of the used water. If this is the case, then it’s better to wash it down with white vinegar and hot water. You also need to find out if this is the case first, although washing the pipes won’t do any harm.
It’s best to find the source of the smell before you take any additional steps in order to get rid of the smell. Be mindful that it may not be the washing machine that a smell is coming from, it could be a bin or another room close by.
How to combat the bad smell
There are a few steps you can take to combat bad smells that are coming from your front load washer. In not so serious cases, you can do it by yourself, but if there is a serious smell that is affecting the whole house, you’re better off getting a professional in.
Get a cleaning and maintenance routine
The best thing to do to prevent any smells at all coming from your front load washer is to ensure that you’re cleaning it after every use and keeping up with any maintenance.
Clean it as often as you’re using it and be sure that you use vinegar and soda to deodorize it. Ensure that you’re getting all the spaces within your front load washer.
This is more important than you might realize. Any ventilation pipes coming from the front load washer can become clogged and redirect the used water into your home.
You have to be ready for how dirty this can get. There could be all sorts of items stuck in the pipes and removing these items will rid your home of that awful sewage smell.
Check for faulty parts
A washing machine is mechanical and this means that there are lots of little parts in the back that aren’t visible.
Machines are prone to having faults and damages, and this can cause a smell to come from your washing machine as it doesn’t end up working properly. If you notice there is an electrical fault then you’ll want to phone for a professional to help.
Call a professional
If you’re not wanting to find the problem for yourself and would much rather someone else do it for you, or you’ve found that there is a more technical problem, you can call a professional who will be able to assist you.
Tips to improve front load washer smells
- Don’t use more detergent just because you want your washing to smell stronger, this will cause a blockage which will cause a smell in the long run.
- Use a HE-approved detergent and only use 2 tablespoons per load. It’s important to measure how much you’re putting into the dispenser.
- If you’re using laundry pods, use one per average-size load. Use two pods for larger or soiled loads.
- It’s best to avoid using fabric softener and using white vinegar instead as this works best to soften your clothes without adding any residue to the washing machine.
- Ensure that you have a fan in your laundry room in order to improve the air circulation.
- Clean your washing machines lint trap often as if this isn’t done, it can cause a smell.
- Leave your door ajar in order to let the air circulation flow and prevent the build up of mould and mildew.
There are so many reasons as to why your washing machine can smell of sewage or rotten eggs, and the first thing you should be doing is identifying the exact reason as to where the smell is coming from.
If you continue letting it happen, then it will only get worse. There is no way for it to ‘fix itself’.
However, be mindful that if it is too complex of a job to complete, you should definitely consult a professional who will be able to assist you further and ensure that the job is done properly.
We hope these tips and tricks in this article have helped you in making your washing machine smell as new and how you can prevent the smells from happening further.
As a busy mom, Raz knows firsthand the challenges of balancing parenting and household management. Raz is constantly searching for ways to simplify her life and loves sharing her experiences and tips with others. Whether it's finding creative meal solutions for picky eaters or discovering the latest time-saving home organization hack, she is always on the lookout for ways to make life easier for her family and herself.
Last update on 2023-03-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API