How to clean the inside of a washing machine and keep it that way

Ssreek

Adept
How old is your machine? to get an idea of how long it took for that stuff to buildup
It‘s 6 years old.

No, but at least once a month you want to run an empty wash on the hottest setting. How old is your machine and what is the model#?
Model is Samsung front load model (2016) with Eco bubble tag. I usually run ‘eco drum clean’ mode every month or once in 2 months. That mode is simply 60C wash that runs for an hour and half. The service guys told me to use half cup of surf liquid for that drum clean wash. Maybe I have to try vanish method u mentioned in first post.

Do you have an IR thermometer, one that can record temperature?
No. That temperature detail I mentioned is basically what is displayed on washing machine panel.
 

blr_p

Skilled
PFA photos sir :)
Good, this is exactly what people need to see. The tub is clean but its what's underneath that counts.
From Feb of this year. What did it smell like?

Good thing your machine is a semi-automatic so most of the gunk was near the impeller. Otherwise, that stuff would have coated the inner tub if it was a front or top loader.
Machine is prolly 7-9 years old. I don't think it is because of SA8.
What about fabric softener? Was that used at any time?

This is what a record of cold washing will do. Has your machine ever seen a hot wash in its entire life? approaching 60 degrees

Any way to hook up a solar water heater? that will improve things across the board. Better wash quality, rinse quality and make maintenance washes easier.

It's rare to see agitators in washers these days. They are harder on clothes but as a result, the wash quality is better than with impellers.


As to what product to use to prevent it. Read this earlier post to get an idea.

You need an oxygen bleach, either Vanish or Labogens. The second tool, chlorine bleach is optional, preferably the Suma tabs instead of Rin.

Since your machine is all plastic, the max hot water temperature you can use is 60 degrees. Water out of the geezer will do. That will be 50-60.

You can decide on the frequency. Once every three or four months or more often.


Given the design of the machine, lint will still build up in there as your machine does not appear to have a lint filter. Maybe the next time you take a look underneath it won't be as unpleasant.

Thing is, the problem is much reduced in your case with a semi-automatic as there is no inner tub that holds water like a top loader with a steel basket. So build-up only occurs in one place and is easily removed manually.

You could just do a disassembly once a year and continue as you are. No need for Vanish or anything else.
It‘s 6 years old. Model is Samsung front load model (2016) with Eco bubble tag. I usually run ‘eco drum clean’ mode every month or once in 2 months. That mode is simply 60C wash that runs for an hour and half.
Can you post a photo of the front console which shows the model number?

The service guys told me to use half cup of surf liquid for that drum clean wash.
Liquid surf will do nothing to clean the machine. You need a detergent with oxygen bleach for this purpose and no liquid detergent contains it.

Do you notice any smell when you take clothes out after a wash cycle completes? You can only catch it when the machine is still wet from a wash.

My machine is as old as yours and it developed a mildew smell which would not shift.

Maybe I have to try vanish method u mentioned in first post.
Do that and make sure to also use half a kilo of clean fabric as well. Don't use dirty clothes. The tub clean cycle is meant to clean the machine.

The fabric is necessary when using Vanish otherwise the machine will fill up with foam caused by the higher water level used during the drum clean cycle.

The fabric also acts as a sponge to spray the water higher up in the inner tub that water won't reach.

I keep about 4 mops and an old towel in a bag just for this purpose.

The manual says to run the drum clean with nothing because during this cycle the imbalance sensor is disengaged. So out of balance spins can occur if there is too much fabric. I think half a kilo is fine and should present no problems. You don't want two kilos of fabric in there for a drum clean cycle.

You can do the Vanish tub clean every three months. Perhaps more often if you use fabric softener which you really should not be using.

In the intervening months just run a boil wash once a month with nothing. Max temp.

If you do not have hard water then this is all the maintenance you need to do.
 
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Rockfella

Staff member
Section Mod
Good, this is exactly what people need to see. The tub is clean but its what's underneath that counts.

From Feb of this year. What did it smell like?

Good thing your machine is a semi-automatic so most of the gunk was near the impeller. Otherwise, that stuff would have coated the inner tub if it was a front or top loader.

What about fabric softener? Was that used at any time?

This is what a record of cold washing will do. Has your machine ever seen a hot wash in its entire life? approaching 60 degrees

Any way to hook up a solar water heater? that will improve things across the board. Better wash quality, rinse quality and make maintenance washes easier.

It's rare to see agitators in washers these days. They are harder on clothes but as a result, the wash quality is better than with impellers.

As to what product to use to prevent it. Read this earlier post to get an idea.

You need an oxygen bleach, either Vanish or Labogens. The second tool, chlorine bleach is optional, preferably the Suma tabs instead of Rin.

Since your machine is all plastic, the max hot water temperature you can use is 60 degrees. Water out of the geezer will do. That will be 50-60.

You can decide on the frequency. Once every three or four months or more often.

Given the design of the machine, lint will still build up in there as your machine does not appear to have a lint filter. Maybe the next time you take a look underneath it won't be as unpleasant.

Thing is, the problem is much reduced in your case with a semi-automatic as there is no inner tub that holds water like a top loader with a steel basket. So build-up only occurs in one place and is easily removed manually.

You could just do a disassembly once a year and continue as you are. No need for Vanish or anything else.
It smelt like gutter, horrible stench.
Yes this is why I purchased a semi automatic.
I don't use any fabric softner.
This machine has seldom seen hot water.
No way for a solar DIY.
Yes, even when I bought this one, I had to hunt for it, tried a few shops and they had like few machines with agitator. IIRC WHirlpool had/has a patent on it. I knew about agitator and my geeky brain told me to get this one or fully auto not the impeller ones. It cleans a lot better, so much that my mom does not use her machine and only wants to use this one. They are hard no clothes yes but I use it with more water than usual and it takes less time was better washes. I even wash shoes, wrist wraps, wrist bands comforters in this beast. 7-9 years no torn/damaged cloth till date.
Yes it is very easy to clean it. The agitator just pulls out completely and it is fun cleaning it.
Thing is, the problem is much reduced in your case with a semi-automatic as there is no inner tub that holds water like a top loader with a steel basket. So build-up only occurs in one place and is easily removed manually: Another reason why I still prefer semis.
You could just do a disassembly once a year and continue as you are. No need for Vanish or anything else. I still want to use vinegar to clean it maybe twice a year.
Question for you : Since agitators are rare now (Whirlpool official site has no models with agitators) what do you recommend for the next purchase?
 
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blr_p

Skilled
It smelt like gutter, horrible stench.
Liquid detergents are made from oils and leave a fatty residue. This then attracts other dirt and build up as you found out. Hot water clears it out but you can't do that in your machine. This is the same case with top loaders as well. Someone made a video about removing the impeller and looking underneath



@bhp91 and @nRiTeCh should watch these. Will not remove everything since you have top loaders but it does remove quite a bit which tends to descend to the bottom. It will give you a peek into a part of the tub and you can assess how bad things are.

His other video is about descalers. Vanish will be better unless you have scale, in addition, to deal with.
Yes, even when I bought this one, I had to hunt for it, tried a few shops and they had like few machines with agitator. IIRC WHirlpool had/has a patent on it. I knew about agitator and my geeky brain told me to get this one or fully auto not the impeller ones. It cleans a lot better, so much that my mom does not use her machine and only wants to use this one. They are hard no clothes yes but I use it with more water than usual and it takes less time was better washes. I even wash shoes, wrist wraps, wrist bands comforters in this beast. 7-9 years no torn/damaged cloth till date.
An impeller is the same thing with the centre pole removed. Maybe the vanes higher up the pole improve the wash action. Many comments from the US swear by agitators. Fast and does the job
Yes it is very easy to clean it. The agitator just pulls out completely and it is fun cleaning it.
When was the last time you cleaned it?
I still want to use vinegar to clean it maybe twice a year.
Dirt is acidic. Everything we secrete is acidic. Skin's ph is 5 - 5.5. Vinegar is an acid so against other acids vinegar won't do much. Vanish with percarbonate is alkaline and will remove dirt better.

Vinegar might help to reduce scale but it's better to use citric acid to descale as regular use of vinegar, in the long run, will damage the seals that keep the machine watertight.
 
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Nice guide. I do clean that mini filter present in the middle frequently but never cleaned the whole tub or the bottom.
It's been like 9 years now. I imagine it's really bad there now. But the machine never smelled bad so hopefully everything is fine
 

blr_p

Skilled
Not having hard water
No need for a descaler then. I use citric acid instead just to remove any detergent deposits a couple of times a year.
Have used this product yesterday night https://www.amazon.in/gp/product/B07CJXG612?psc=1

Today, I have noticed that Drum stainless steel shine has become dull
Is this normal?
Descaler won't give you any shine. That is what percarbonate will do.

Try with Vanish powder and follow the instructions on the first page.

If your Bosch does not have a drum clean cycle run it on the cottons 90 cycle.
 
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6pack

ex-Mod
I think it's just descaler chemicals leaving a coating on the steel drum. I saw this happen with some generic brand. Had to use a sponge and Colin spray to clean the entire drum and make it shine again. Then rinse again on high.
 

Soyab0007

Gamer
Adept
No need for a descaler then. I use citric acid instead just to remove any detergent deposits a couple of times a year.

Descaler won't give you any shine. That is what percarbonate will do.

Try with Vanish powder and follow the instructions on the first page.

If your Bosch does not have a drum clean cycle run it on the cottons 90 cycle.
had run it on cotton 90 cycle last night.. to get the shine back, has to use percarbonate?
 

blr_p

Skilled
had run it on cotton 90 cycle last night..
Take a photo of how it looks now

Then do a wash with your regular detergent and see if there is any difference.
to get the shine back, has to use percarbonate?
After the above, you can try Vanish. Remember to put half a kilo of clean fabric in the drum when using Vanish.

Take a photo after it finishes

Post both photos.
I use only 1½ spoon of soap powder per heavy load.
what size spoon is it? Is this the 60gm scoop so 90gms or less?
Seems it's not dissolving in water for some reason. Even the water hardness keeps changing according to the source. We get a mix of borewell and tanker water so somedays the TDS is ~300 and sometimes it's like 550-600.
You could try adding STPP to the detergent in a 1:2 ratio. 1 part STPP and two parts detergent


STPP will soften the water.

The trick is to find which ratio works. So you would add the STPP to the water, wait for it to become slippery and that is the amount that you need. Then add the detergent after.
 
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6pack

ex-Mod
I don't know how many grams the scoop is. It came with surf powder decades back. I usually use borax with detergent in 2:1 ratio. It used to work - could see the soap forming foam in water. Didn't buy any borax after some time. Thought it didn't work but it was actually working.
 

blr_p

Skilled
Go back to it then. Borax is the same as washing soda which is in your detergent. Borax is more for odour removal though. It is half the cost or the same if you can get away with half as much STPP.

If Borax doesn't work then try STPP which will be better at softening. If water hardness is approaching 600ppm then Borax will not work much compared to STPP.

Borax is a precipitating softener, STPP is not which makes it better. The downside of STPP is it needs warm water. Might not dissolve in colder water.

Products like D'cal which you leave in the tank work on phosphates
 
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frozenscotch

Disciple
Last month, my 8 yr old Samsung front load washing machine went thru drum repairs. Prior to it, it was lying idle for 1year.
So, the things went like this.
I did a quick wash, its around 20min wash rinse and dry cycle. I noticed weird sound during drying. After 2 days, kept for another wash. It started and stopped after 5mins but there's sound of motor coming as its kind of working. Removed all clothes, ran empty rinse and dry cycle. It completed. So, I opened the front lid and tried to rotate the drum that's when I observed it's axis of rotation got changed. Called local tech. When opened, that joint between drum and main body broke. I dont know material of those legs. Now, new SS legs were welded. While disassembling, he told to change the pumps (can see in the pic, 2 black rods that connected to drum from below and provides stability to it ) Total came around 6500 which includes labour too.
Could not take after-repair pics, they cleaned the drum, now it's shining stainless steely :D Also there's lot of rust at the inner base and sides. Also some patches of rust on the outside. They cleaned with sand paper and anti rust spray coating was done

I believe, atleast once in 2 or 3 years, its good to give for proper cleaning service where they disassemble the machine and do drum clean, anti rusting treatment, clean any salt, muck deposits etc even though we follow descaling, drum clean cycle etc
 

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blr_p

Skilled
Last month, my 8 yr old Samsung front load washing machine went thru drum repairs. Prior to it, it was lying idle for 1year.
How did you maintain the machine during those eight years? how many hot washes did you do? maintenance washes and what products you used.

Did you use powder or liquid detergent? What about fabric softener?

Do you leave the door open after every wash or close it? for some people leaving the door open is not an option because of small children or lack of space.

The drum has limescale on it. But not much on the heater element so your water hardness is borderline medium-hard. How often did you descale it?

Eight years is on the short side, it's not bad but I'm hoping to get people to reach 12 years before spider failure. To do that we have to delay spider corrosion which you can see is completely eaten up, starting from the centre.

I dont know material of those legs.
Aluminium die-cast alloy 3 or AC3 as it is known in the industry. It's a one piece mould and is supposed to resist harsh chemical environments. But there is a limit.

Now, new SS legs were welded.
Does the new spider look like this? that Kochi repair shop offers five year warranty on their custom spiders. The trick is the weld at the centre has to be exceptionally good as that is where the maximum stress is and likely failure point. This is why the stock spider is one piece, instead of welded.
While disassembling, he told to change the pumps (can see in the pic, 2 black rods that connected to drum from below and provides stability to it ) Total came around 6500 which includes labour too.
Could not take after-repair pics, they cleaned the drum, now it's shining stainless steely :D Also there's lot of rust at the inner base and sides. Also some patches of rust on the outside. They cleaned with sand paper and anti rust spray coating was done
What about the bearings? weren't those changed too? and bearing seal which is a rubber cover over them.

Did the machine sound much louder before failure?
I believe, atleast once in 2 or 3 years, its good to give for proper cleaning service where they disassemble the machine and do drum clean, anti rusting treatment, clean any salt, muck deposits etc even though we follow descaling, drum clean cycle etc
People coat the spider with all manner of things but at most that will extend life by a year or two. You can remove salt and muck yourself with regular drum cleans. The Vanish for instance will remove a lot of that brown stuff that coats the inner tub.

Repair guys say you cannot prevent it. True but there is a difference between losing it at 6-7 years or less and 12-13 years. I know someone who is on his third spider in six years. So what changes is the rate of corrosion of the spider. For some, it is accelerated and for others slower. The trick is understanding what the latter are doing that the former are not or cannot do.

Delaying corrosion can be done with regular hot temperature maintenance washes. Hot water alone at max temps will help remove soap residue. On LG' enable the 'intensive' setting as this will prolong the wash cycle by 15 minutes so you get more benefit. I don't know what the Samsung or other brand equivalent of intensive is. But you want the longest wash at the hottest temperature. Maintenance washes use a higher water level than regular washes but don't get as hot. So compliment them with boil washes during months you don't run a maintenance wash. Put half kilo clean fabric in the machine so it acts as a sponge and sprays the water everywhere inside the tub.

The corrosion is caused by detergent which is alkaline. If aluminium is coated with detergent for a long time it will corrode. If the door is closed that coating remains wet and causes faster corrosion. If the door is open then whatever is there dries and the corrosion rate is slower. Always leave the door open after a wash. This is the simplest thing you can do to prolong the life of the spider.

If there was a way to speed up the drying it's even better. One model by GE, the GE GFW850 has an ultra vent system. It spins the drum slowly for 15 minutes every hour for a few hours to speed up the drying. See attached. A feature to look for with other brands in future if it is successful. Even has a mould resistant gasket though that will not prevent mould buildup inside the machine.

The way to remove the soap is to run citric acid or descale maintenance washes. How many per year? two or four. If you have hard water you need to do it more often. If you don't have hard water you need to do it just to reduce detergent deposits.

Some people think liquid detergent is better as it will not corrode the spider as much as powder detergent but I've seen spider failure in a similar time frame using just liquid detergents but maintenance washes were not being done regularly. The door was not left open after washes. You definitely do not want to be doing cold washes with powder as the powder will not completely dissolve. The minimum wash temperature I use is 40 degrees for everything. If the powder detergent dissolves it does not coat the spider as much. If you use liquid then the Vanish or percarbonate will help to reduce the residue caused by liquid detergent.
 

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