Your washing machine is a particularly helpful appliance that is used on a regular basis. It not only allows you to clean large amounts of clothing at a time, but you can also wash larger, more difficult items such as towels, bedding, and even area rugs. However, it is important to realize that because your washing machine is an appliance that can perform cleaning duties, it also accumulates dirt and other debris. This combined with the constant moisture running through your washing machine can lead to additional problems.
Mold in Washing Machines
One such problem is that washing machines can become breeding grounds for mold with the combination of debris and water. This is why cleaning your washing machine on a regular basis is important. Without consistent cleaning, it won’t be difficult for mold colonies to grow in your washing machine which can affect your clothing.
Usually, mold in washing machines can be found in the rubber seal for front-loading washers and components of top-loading machines. So, if you do find that mold has grown in your washing machine, then do not hesitate to act right away. You don’t want to ignore the problem only for it to lead to damage to your expensive washing machine or your clothing.
Make sure you check your washing machine regularly for mold growth and debris. Refer to the following tips if you need help removing mold from your washing machine.
Removing Mold in Washing Machines
1. Create a Mold Cleaning Solution
To start, you will need to create a mold cleaning solution. Although it may seem somewhat daunting, you can easily use household ingredients to create a safe and effective mixture. There are even multiple solutions you can make based on the severity of the mold growth.
If the mold in your washing machine is minimal, then a solution of 4 parts water and 1 part vinegar can do the trick. For more severe cases, you should try out the following mixtures.
Combine ¼ cup of lemon juice, ½ cup of hydrogen peroxide, and 2 cups of water to treat more extensive mold growth. If you don’t have hydrogen peroxide on hand, then substitute it with distilled white vinegar. A solution of 4 parts water and 1 part bleach can also be used if the aforementioned solutions are not effective at removing the mold in your washing machine.
2. Treat the Affected Areas
Once you have created your mold cleaning solution, transfer it to a spray bottle and apply the mixture to the affected areas. Make sure you protect yourself by wearing rubber gloves and a face mask.
For spots that are worse, allow the solution to sit for a couple of minutes, then scrub the area with a toothbrush. If the mold growth is minimal, you can spray and wipe the area using a clean towel or cloth right away.
3. Clean the Drum and Hoses
After treating the moldy areas, the next step is to clean the washing machine drum and its hoses. This is important because it ensures that lingering mold and its odors are eliminated entirely from the machine. To do this, add your mold cleaner to the machine and run it on the hottest water setting. Running a cycle will get the cleaning solution into the drums and hoses to wash away any residual mold.
4. Preventing Mold in Washing Machines
With the proper actions, you can prevent mold from growing in your washing machine in the first place. Aside from regular machine cleaning, the most effective ways to prevent mold growth in your washing machine is with moisture control and proper drying.
This means allowing the machine’s drum and other components to dry fully by leaving the door open so that moisture can evaporate. If you shut the machine’s door too soon, it will take much longer for the water to dry out. This can then create a damp environment that is ideal for mold growth.
You should also promptly remove your load from the wash so that the wet items don’t sit around. The longer wet items remain in the washer, the greater the chance of mold growth. This also encourages the development of a musty odor and may force you to have to wash your clothes a second time.
Furthermore, you should use only the appropriate detergent for your washing machine. For example, if you have a high-efficiency (HE) washing machine, then you need to use HE laundry detergent. Using a standard, non-HE detergent will make for an inefficient wash that leads to excessive suds, which can leave behind residue and encourage mold growth.
Professional Mold Remediation Services
Your washing machine isn’t the only place you should be concerned about being affected by mold growth. In fact, if your washing machine suffers a malfunction such as an overflow, then it could lead to water damage to your property — and mold growth in the surrounding areas.
If you have a mold problem at home, then do not hesitate to seek immediate help. The longer mold-affected areas and appliances go untreated, the worse the damage will be. With enough time, mold can cause serious damage to your home and appliances and increase the risk of related health effects.
At ServiceMaster EMT, we can help residential and commercial properties in Southern California and Nevada through our professional mold remediation services. Within these mold removal services, our professional technicians locate and address the moisture source that caused the mold growth, contain the mold, restore the damaged materials, and decontaminate the affected areas.
With mold removal help from ServiceMaster EMT, your property will be clean and safe once again.
For our mold remediation services in Southern California and Nevada, give us a call at (949) 229-3699, where we are available on a 24/7 basis.