How to Maintain a Washing machine.
Your washing machine is a very essential appliance in the home. It is one home appliance that has truly brought a difference to our lives. The invention of the washing machine has helped reduce the manual labor spent on the cleaning of the clothes either domestically or commercially. All you have to do is put the clothes in the machine and select the wash mode.
Thanks to the washing machine, our daily routine tasks can now be managed in a beautiful manner giving us more time to engage in our other precious activities. In addition to this, they have helped greatly in saving time used in the cleaning of clothes and water consumption as compared to manual washing.
A washing machine is one such technological wonder that has made our lives hassle-free. This time-saving miracle technology has made an enormous impact on the lives of those fortunate enough to afford it. And if you have made a considerable investment in buying it, you want to make sure it has the longest possible service life.
Why is it so important to maintain your Washing machine?
Firstly, if you want to get a much better value for money, you want to save money on your energy bills, and you want your clothes to be washed to a higher standard, then maintaining your washing machine is of paramount importance. Because it is only when you do this that you can enjoy all of the above wishes.
It is no doubt that your Washing machine would have cost you a pretty penny, even if it was one of the "cheap" ones. To make that investment as sound as possible, your washing machine needs a long and reliable service life, as with every other kind of machine. Maintenance needs to be periodic to keep it working as reliably and efficiently as possible.
What risks would your Washing machine face if not properly maintained?
Several major factors can affect the effectiveness and efficiency of your washing machine in the long run. I would mention a few.
* Gradual wear and tear of parts.
This is to be expected with any machine that is constantly used. Continuous use would eventually lead to wear and tear of the motor parts and if not properly taken care of, it would eventually lead to damage. The same thing goes with the washing machine.
The motor and the drum, in particular, are parts that are in constant use when your machine is on, and over time they can wear out. You don’t have to wait until parts break before doing something about it. Regular maintenance checks on your washing machine by a professional can help you identify worn out parts before they break down.
It is more cost and time-efficient to replace a part than to replace your whole machine. Also, an otherwise perfectly serviceable machine continues to be used rather than being dumped and traded for a new one. And so, it is also an environment-friendly option.
* Buildup of limescale.
The effects of limescale build-up in your washing machine not only affects the machine itself but also the quality of your clothes. With a limescale build-up, clothes can become itchy and uncomfortable, as well as not coming out of the machine as clean as you want them. Some products can help to break down this limescale.
Both vinegar and lemon juice will do a great job of removing any limescale deposits and freshening up the insides of your washing machine at the same time.
How do you go about it? Just use a large cup of either liquid in place of your usual detergent in the Washing machine and run a normal washing cycle (without clothes).
That being said, it is no doubt that your washing machine is one of your priciest home appliances. It’s also one of the items you would struggle to do without. So, we have got some tips to help you ensure that you never have to.
Just a general note of caution to kick things off: before you go digging around into hoses and filters and wandering feet, unplug your machine from the electrical supply. It is safer that way. The other thing to bear in mind is that if you are in doubt about anything to do with your machine, check the instruction manual
Here are 8 Essential maintenance tips to help keep your Washing machine working efficiently for a longer period.
* Wash the interiors of your Washing machine.
Yes, you need to wash your Washing machine. I know you might be thinking, "I thought the washing machine usually gets washed when it is washing my clothes". Well, that's far from it. Although the job of the washing machine is to clean your clothes, it still needs to be cleaned regularly so that it can wash your clothes effectively.
Cleaning your washing machine regularly would help to keep it clean and smelling fresh. Use a washing machine cleaner or lime juice once per month to keep high-efficiency washing machines free of odor-causing residue. Just run the machine with water and 2 cups of lime juice on the hottest wash but without clothes.
You get to remove the detergent build-up, grease (due to washing greasy clothes), and dirt from the tub, dispenser, and water pipes. Doing this once a month would clean the interior of the machine and outlet pipe from grease, hard water residue, and other dirt build-ups.
* Replace the Washing machine's water hose.
Washing machines usually have two or three hoses of which two are inlets and one is an outlet. Make sure the inlets are properly connected to the water source and have no cracks or leaks. Check hoses regularly for bulging, cracking, fraying, and leaks around the ends. Replace the hose if a problem is found or every three to five years as part of a proactive maintenance program.
Also, make sure the hose fittings are tightly screwed on to avoid leakage. Also, do not forget to check the condition of the outlet or drain hose from time to time. Since it takes out the dirty water, lint, and micro fabric particles, they could build up in the drain filter and block the pipe.
* Clean the Machine's Lint filter.
The lint filter helps to extract the lint and other dirt particles from the washing process and collects them in a bag. Depending on your machine, the lint filter may be located in the agitator tube, which is the center column of most machines, or near the top of the washtub. You have to clean this filter once in a while too.
You have to keep the lint filter clean to help your washing machine run efficiently. This is because once the filter is full, it is not able to collect the debris which will continue to remain in the water. This debris will get stuck on your clothes and build up in the machine as well.
If not properly taken care of, it will lead to the reduction of the life of your machine and negatively affect its performance. It can even damage the agitator or pulsator in extreme cases.
* Don't Overload the washing machine.
I understand the temptation of putting those extra t-shirts into your already full washing machine, you just want to get everything done in a single cycle. However, every washing machine clearly states its washing capacity for a reason. Constantly going over the washing machine capacity would harm the machine eventually.
Overloading your washing machine puts pressure on the motor and results in overheating. Also, a packed load will result in poor or no spinning at all. Your washing machine is not your travel bag where you can stuff more things than its capacity. Not only will you damage the machine's motor, but you will also be stuck with partially cleaned clothes and so you lose on both ends.
* Use the Right type and amount of detergent.
The choice of a good washing machine detergent depends on your budget and specific washing needs. Some people prefer to use machine-specific detergents while others use regular detergents. The point to remember is that the detergent you use must not be too harsh or heavily alkaline, as this will damage both the machine parts and your clothes.
Another thing you have to take note of is the amount of detergent you use. People often think that more detergent is needed to get sparkling clean clothes. We load the machine with dirty and greasy clothes and add heaps of detergent and hope that at the end we would get stain-free clothes. This, however, shouldn't be the case.
It is advisable to always wash clothes in small loads with less detergent. The use of excess detergent would not only damage the clothes, but also the water pipes and motor of the washing machine.
* Keep your Washing machine well ventilated.
It is always good to leave the washing machine lid or door open between loads to dry out the unit and keep it smelling fresh. Opening the washing machine's door and keeping it open as wide as possible between washes will allow air to circulate inside. This will help to prevent the damp conditions that can encourage mold.
You can leave the door open for 15 to 30 minutes to remove the moisture and prevent mold and bacteria from building up in your machine. This also properly dries up the tub and protects delicate parts from damage caused by moisture.
A good way to ensure the inside has no moisture is to wipe it off with a thick dry towel 15-30 minutes after the washing has ended and the leftover moisture has dried somewhat. On front loading washing machines, wipe down the rubber seal around the door after doing your laundry.
* Ensure that your Washing machine is leveled.
If your washing machine is wandering about too much, it’s probably not properly balanced. Other signs that it isn't properly balanced are; clothes that are still wet after the final spin, longer cycle times, or the washing machine pausing during operation.
Because your washing machine is so heavy, it can vibrate strongly during the spin cycle, rock, or walk across the floor when it is not level. This can damage the floor or the machine, not just this, it may also cause damage to anything near the machine. You should be able to adjust the legs so that they provide a solid, non-wobbly base.
To check for wobbliness, hold onto opposite corners of your washing machine and see if it rocks. If it does, you need to adjust the height of its legs. You can balance the washer by turning the legs clockwise to lower it and counter-clockwise to raise it.
Your washing machine should have adjustable, front leveling legs with a lock nut. You adjust the leg to the proper height, then tighten the lock nut up against the body of the machine to keep the leg from rotating.
* Take great care of your Machine's exterior.
New looking and clean home appliances enhance the appearance of your place. However, an old washing machine usually does not look good and may even impair the look of the room or the house. Some people ignore this aspect and do not care to clean the outside or top of the machine, but you must do.
Front-load washing machines are the ones that suffer the most from this. Their plain top surface makes them a magnet for assorted stuff that keeps gathering on them. Clean the top and sides of your machine with a glass cleaner so that it does not damage the finish. Maintaining the pre-installed factory finish is the best way you can keep your machine look bright for long.
It is also perfectly safe to use a little dish detergent and a damp rag to clean all of its surfaces, especially for painted steel surfaces.
Your washing machine offers your household loads of support, so it is only reasonable to take the time to return the favor. Washing machine maintenance can help you avoid breakdowns that could put the appliance out of commission, or worse, lead to leaks and costly water damage.
The above tips are simple things you can do that could make a huge difference in reducing wear and tear on your washing machine. After all, it’s a major investment, you want to keep it in good shape so it lasts for years to come.