How to Clean Your Front Loader Washing Machine

3 Materials
1 Hour

Like all things that have anything to do with water, if you are not keeping your washing machine clean and dry, the smells will come- and let me tell you those smells won’t be pretty. Over time, washing machines build up sludge from detergents, fabric softeners, and different fibers from our clothing. This sludge then gets trapped in a warm, damp machine.

With these 5 simple steps you will be able to get rid of that yucky smell that sometimes comes with a front loading washing machine.

You will need the following supplies to get this job done:

  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Towel for wiping off grime
  • Sponge
  • Start by mixing 1/4 cup of baking soda with 1/4 cup of water. 
  • Add this solution to your machine’s detergent container. 
  • Next you will need to pour two cups of white vinegar directly into the drum. 
  • You will run a normal cycle at high heat.

The baking soda and vinegar will break up that sludge stuck to your drum.

 It will also kill any mold. And no mold means, no more yucky smells. 

Once your cycle has completed you will now wipe out the drum to remove any moisture. Grab the detergent dispenser and clean the tray and any attachments. You may have to refer to your owner’s manual to see how to pull these trays out to clean. 

Once you have cleaned and dried the detergent dispenser replace it directly back into your machine carefully. 

When your cleaning cycle has completed and you have also given it a good wipe with a soft cloth to remove any excess moisture you are done cleaning your washer!

To clean the gasket I like using a sponge for this step of cleaning my smelly front loading washing machine. Grab your sponge and add a touch of vinegar to it and scrub, scrub, scrub. 

You may have to rinse your sponge and reapply vinegar a few times during this process till you get all the grim and junk out especially if you have an animal that sheds a lot of hair!

This step can actually be done daily but it is also important when doing your monthly cleaning of your washer. Not only is it important to wipe down the inside but be sure to focus on wiping down the outside as well. When wiping down the glass of the door that faces the inside of the drum you are removing moisture that could possibly be trapped inside a closed washer for days at a time. 

This last step is the most important. It is simple, leave the door open. You want to do this not only after your monthly cleaning but after every wash cycle 

Leaving your door open after every wash helps the moisture evaporate quickly. This will help in keeping those unflattering smells from returning

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Adrienne Carrie Hubbard | Crafty Little Gnome
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 19 questions
  • Nha52812160 Nha52812160 on Dec 28, 2021

    Can I use cleaning vinegar in a top loading washer?

  • Mau52463922 Mau52463922 on Jan 01, 2022

    What do you do if you don’t have a front loader how do u clean your washer

  • Patsy Patsy on Jan 04, 2022

    How do I clean my top loading washing machine?


Join the conversation

2 of 53 comments
  • Dykes Dykes on Dec 29, 2021

    Is there anything you do different if it's a top loading washer instead of a front loading washer . I still get those bad smells and I've not had my washer long at all. It's one of those without the agitator and the clear glass so you can see the inside of it when itt's washing. It doesn't seem like Ive ever gotten a load of clothes outt that smells good !! I dispose the set I have. Even worse it took me forever to choose !! I've also used Affresh on the the setting for it. It's a Whirlpool Bravo Super Duty Commercial. It also takes forever to wash and dry a load !! 😈 I'd love to get rid of both !!!! WORST DECISION I EVER MADE !!!! SORRY I had to vent !!! 😭. 🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋