You May Be Unknowingly Ruining Your Washing Machine

Using a washing machine correctly seems simple, right?   How hard could it possibly be?  It's easy, just stuff your washing machine full of dirty clothes (not leaving any space for the clothes to move around), add lots of laundry soap to make sure your clothing is nice and soapy , close the lid, and press start.  Does this sound about right?  If this is the way you're using your washing machine, this is incorrect.  These bad habits could potentially break your washing machine.   Following these useful washing tips will give your washing machine a longer life, saving you from premature repairs and replacement.  

Empty Out The Pockets Of All Clothing

It sounds a little silly that something left in a pocket could cause potential damage to a washing machine.  However, there are many items that can cause serious damage.  Coins, keys, or any type of sharp object can get trapped in the inner part of the washer causing damage.  It's also a good habit to turn all clothing right side out, and to zip up sweatshirts and jeans. This will deter these items from getting hooked onto other clothing or even to the agitator (this is the device in the middle of the washing machine that is responsible for stirring up the clothes in order for them to get clean).  Somehow crayons tend to make their way into the washing machine.  Melted crayons not only ruin your clothing, but can also cause damage to the washer. Paying attention to what actually makes it into your washing machine only makes good sense.  

Smaller Load of Laundry

Yes, washing machines have come a long way.  They are now designed to carry a much heavier load than prior models.  However, you still don't want to overload the washer.  You need to leave enough space in order for the water to move freely about the clothes and for the agitator to do its job.

Use Less Laundry Detergent

In the case of laundry detergent, less is definitely more.  Too much detergent causes too many suds.  This can cause damage to the inner mechanisms of the washing machine.   Take special care if you have a high efficiency washing machine, you must use detergent especially made for these machines.  When lower water levels are used to wash (high efficiency machines use much less water than traditional washers), the suds increase making it difficult for the laundry to get thoroughly cleaned, and could potentially leave the washer with suds that may cause damage.  This special detergent is made with ingredients that will decrease the amount of suds present when washing is in progress.   

Cleaning Your Washing Machine With Vinegar

Cleaning your washing machine frequently will ensure that your washer is free of any build up that occurs from regular use.  Using vinegar to keep your washer clean is a suitable option.    

  • Set your washer to the hottest temperature
  • Add a few cups of vinegar
  • Start your washer
  • Once your washer fills up, open the lid and let stand for a few hours
  • Close the lids and let the washer go through the entire washing cycle  

In order to protect your investment, make these simple changes when washing your laundry and talk to appliance dealers for more ideas.  You'll be glad you did.