What’s the best thing to clean a washing machine?

The best thing to clean a washing machine is a combination of vinegar, baking soda, and hot water. This natural and inexpensive solution can remove dirt, grime, mold, and odors from your washer without damaging it. In this article, we will show you how to use this method to clean your washing machine in a few simple steps.

Why do you need to clean your washing machine?

You might think that your washing machine is always clean because it washes your clothes. However, this is not the case. Over time, your washing machine can accumulate dirt, soap residue, hard water minerals, and bacteria that can affect its performance and hygiene. If you don’t clean your washing machine regularly, you might notice some of these signs:

  • Your clothes come out smelling musty or sour
  • Your clothes have stains or spots that were not there before
  • Your washing machine makes loud or unusual noises
  • Your washing machine leaks or overflows
  • Your washing machine has a foul or moldy odor

These problems can not only ruin your clothes, but also pose health risks for you and your family. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), exposure to mold can cause allergic reactions, asthma attacks, respiratory infections, and skin irritations. Therefore, it is important to keep your washing machine clean and fresh.

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How often should you clean your washing machine?

The frequency of cleaning your washing machine depends on several factors, such as how often you use it, what type of detergent you use, what type of water you have, and what type of washing machine you have. However, as a general rule, you should clean your washing machine at least once a month to prevent dirt and mold buildup. You should also clean it after washing heavily soiled items, such as pet bedding, diapers, or towels.

How to clean your washing machine with vinegar and baking soda?

Vinegar and baking soda are two common household items that can effectively clean your washing machine. Vinegar is a natural acid that can dissolve mineral deposits, grease, and soap scum. Baking soda is a natural alkali that can neutralize odors, soften water, and remove stains. Together, they can create a powerful cleaning solution that can reach every part of your washing machine.

Here are the steps to follow to clean your washing machine with vinegar and baking soda:

  1. Set your washing machine to the hottest and longest cycle. Add four cups of white vinegar to the detergent dispenser or directly into the drum. Run the cycle without any clothes or detergent.
  2. When the cycle is finished, open the door and wipe down the inside of the drum, the door, and the rubber seal with a damp cloth. You might need to use a toothbrush or a sponge to scrub away any stubborn dirt or mold.
  3. Sprinkle half a cup of baking soda over the bottom of the drum. Fill the detergent dispenser with one cup of vinegar. Run another hot cycle without any clothes or detergent.
  4. When the cycle is finished, open the door and let the washing machine air dry. You can also wipe down the exterior of the washing machine with a cloth and vinegar to remove any dust or dirt.
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How to maintain your washing machine?

After cleaning your washing machine with vinegar and baking soda, you should notice a difference in how it looks and smells. However, to keep it that way, you should also follow some maintenance tips, such as:

  • Leave the door or lid open after each wash to allow air circulation and prevent mold growth
  • Use the right amount and type of detergent for your washing machine and water hardness
  • Remove wet clothes from the washing machine as soon as possible to avoid odors and bacteria
  • Clean the detergent dispenser, the filter, and the hoses regularly to prevent clogs and leaks
  • Check the manufacturer’s instructions for any specific cleaning or maintenance recommendations for your washing machine model


Cleaning your washing machine is not a difficult or expensive task. You can use vinegar and baking soda, which are natural, safe, and cheap, to remove dirt, mold, and odors from your washer. By following the steps above, you can improve the performance and hygiene of your washing machine and extend its lifespan. You can also save money on repairs, energy bills, and laundry products. Plus, you can enjoy cleaner and fresher clothes every time you wash them.