Smell, mold and your washing machine.


24 December 2020

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A modern washing machine suffers from odors or mold. It can build up to the point where the smell seems to overwhelm all other aspects of the washing experience. The reasons can vary, but are generally due to the fact that moisture accumulates in the laundry tub.

Since the washing machine itself runs full of water, the presence of moisture is typical. Problems usually start when water is not removed at the end of the drainage system or, for some reason, excess water accumulates inside the bathtub.

If you suspect the drainage system, test the clothing immediately after the cycle ends. The 'cheek method' works well. Remove a towel from the finished wash. Place it against your cheek. The towel should feel cool against the cheek without feeling wet. If the towel feels wet, put it back in the washing machine and spin the load again. If another spin removes more moisture, your washing machine will not reach its maximum spin speed.

Associated with a slow spin speed, the washing machine is overloaded. To test for overload, wait until your normal load completes and comes to a complete stop. Then remove two or three items and restart the cycle from the rinse position. Allow the washing machine to fill with water and go through the entire process of rinsing, draining and spinning. Let the machine finish the cycle again and come to a complete stop. If the clothes are now spun correctly, you should suspect congestion.

There are many things that can affect the spin speed. The most common is an unbalanced load. An unbalanced load will not allow the boat to reach the maximum spin speed. It is usually accompanied by the washing machine, which jumps or makes noise. If this is allowed to continue, the moisture will remain inside the tub at the end of the cycle. This makes the machine smell like mold and can eventually lead to the presence of mold.

All washers should have a maximum spin speed to remove moisture from clothes. Although the drain pump removes most of the water, it is the centrifugation that removes the moisture from the clothes. If for some reason the maximum spin speed is not reached, the moisture from the clothes will tend to settle inside the washing machine. This is common for people who leave wet clothes in the machine long after the wash cycle is complete. This simple action often produces odor or mold. For this reason, avoid washing right before bed or before going to work in the morning.

If your washer is a front-load style, the possibility of odor is something to be aware of. Moisture can accumulate both on the inside of the door and on the inside. To solve this problem, wipe the internal surfaces of the door with a clean cloth as soon as the wash is complete. If possible, leave the door open when you have finished washing. This allows warm room air to enter the machine while it is idle,


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