If cleaning and organizing are two mainstays on your house to-do list, likely, keeping your laundry in order falls close behind. Like any other appliance, the best way to prolong the life of your laundry machine is to perform preventive maintenance tasks. Not every task is equal; some need a professional and need to be completed at least once a year, while others can be incorporated into your daily routine. The best thing is, you and your family can do most of these things right at your home. Here are a few laundry room maintenance tips and tricks that will keep your washing machine running smoothly and efficiently.
Keep the interior and exterior of your washer and dryer clean
If you start to notice that your clothes are not coming out as clean as they used when the appliance was new, maybe you need to carry out a deep interior cleaning. The machine’s interior gets dirty due to the scaling mainly caused by micro-residuals present in the water, especially hard water. In such a scenario, carry out a deep cleaning using a strong machine cleaner that can eliminate all the scaling without damaging the plastic and metal part of the appliance.
Dust, dirt and grime are significant sources of problems in washing machines. Keeping the outside of the machine clean will improve the overall exterior look of your laundry .Also, it will prevent contaminants or pollutants build up that can find their way inside the machine, causing damage. In addition, you get a chance to clean out all the spilt detergent so that it doesn’t soil any clothes that is accidentally placed on top of the machine.
Check the hoses regularly
Check both the inlet and outlet hoses regularly for any signs of leaks, clogs and tears likely to happen. Ensure the inlets are correctly connected to the water source and have no leaks and cracks. Since outlet hoses take out the dirty water, they are prone to lint and micro fabric particles, leading to building up and blocking the pipe. Thus, it is essential to check the condition of the drain pipe often. In case of such an issue, try to unblock it or call a professional technician to replace the drainpipe with a new one.
Clean the lint filter
Every machine comes with a lint filter that extracts lint and other dirt particles from the washing process. It is essential to clean the lint filter at least once every two weeks. If you don’t clean the filter, it becomes full; hence it cannot collect debris. They remain in the water and sometimes get stuck on your clothes. In addition to that, build up in either the lint screen or the duct prevents proper airflow in the dryer, causing it to overheat. This can easily cause a fire. Cleaning the lint trap will not only improve the dryer’s efficiency but also increase the lifespan of your machine.
Check your hardware and belt
Regularly inspect the belts for signs of wear and tear, such as rip or cracks. It is recommended to have a replacement belt in hardy for quick repairs. In addition, inspect the screens and filters for signs of replacing and do it immediately where needed. Generally, belts should be replaced at least once per year. It is important to install the right belt in your machine.
Open the door for air circulation
Leave the door of the washing machine open for about 15 to 30 min immediately after washing it. Washing machines can be a breeding ground for mould and mildew. Leaving the door gives the machine a chance to remove the moisture and thus prevent mould and bacteria from building up in the machine. An excellent way to ensure that the interior has no water is to wipe it off using a thick towel after leaving the washer open for about 15 minutes.Also, if you’re using a front loader, wipe down the rubber seal around the door after doing your laundry.
Don’t overload the washer or the dryer
Overloading the dryer or the washer reduces its efficiency and lifespan due to overusing. For instance, a dryer needs space for hot air circulation to dry clothes. Overloading the machine impedes this circulation and thus increases the drying time. In the washer, use the appropriate amount for the size load. For instance, wash bulky and heavy clothes in small loads since they’re harder on the machine.
Frequently asked questions on laundry maintenance
- How long should a washing machine last?
The lifespan of a washing machine depends on how you use and maintain the machine, plus the quality of the washing machine itself. However, a quality washing machine that is well maintained should last up to six years before replacement.
- Is installing a washing machine in the bathroom safe?
It is not safe to put washing machines in the bathroom because they have electrical parts such as a motor circuit board, and it is hazardous if water comes into contact with the electrical components. Additionally, a washing machine has parts made of plastic and metal, and splashes of water can easily corrode the metal parts. Even when you intend to keep it at the corner, it is still hazardous because steam from got water can enter the washing machine and damage it.
- What is the primary cause of mould, mildew and scaling in a washer and dryer?
Mould and mildew love damp places, and hence they grow very fast inside the washing machine. To prevent this, open the door for about 15 minutes immediately after using the appliances. Afterwards, use a thick towel to wipe the left out moisture inside the machine before closing it. Scaling is caused by mineral residual deposited inside the machine, such as magnesium, phosphorus and calcium. Use a robust cleaning machine to remove the scale.
- What precaution should I take in case power goes out while a fully automatic machine is working?
To prevent damage to the machine, unplug and replug once the power comes back. Manually select the approximate time left before the electricity went off. Most automatic machines have a memory function, so they’ll continue the wash cycle from the point the power went off.
- What should I do if I find out my machine is leaking?
Switch it off and disconnect the electricity plug immediately. Check whether the water is leaking from the outlet/inlet pipe and change them if they are damaged or loose. If you can’t find any leakage outside the machine, call a professional to check inside the washing machine.