How to Clean a Smelly Washer and Keep it Smelling Fresh

It is not infrequent for us to experience a bad smell in the washing machine that is also likely to be transferred to the clothes during washing if it is not removed. The causes why this happens can be found in the frequent use of this household appliance, limescale buildup or dirty components. Therefore, today we will see together how to remove bad odors from the washing machine using only a bottle with these ingredients!

  • Vinegar

A first remedy that can come to your rescue to remove the smell from your washing machine is to use vinegar, which is known for its degreasing, anti-scale and deodorizing properties. To use it, you will simply pour a 1 quart of white vinegar directly into the drum or even into the washing machine drawer and start, then, the wash cycle on empty. When finished, you will notice that the smell will be just a bad memory!

N.B There is a long debate about the use of vinegar in drains, as it seems that its approach is not really environmentally friendly. So, ideally, alternative methods should be preferred, first and foremost citric acid.

  • Citric acid

A more environmentally friendly alternative to vinegar is citric acid, which is truly a godsend for removing limescale and odors in the washing machine. As if that were not enough, then, it can also be used to deodorize the dishwasher! All you will have to do, then, is dissolve, ½ lb of citric acid in 1 quart of lukewarm water and pour the resulting mixture directly into the basket. After that, start an empty wash cycle at high temperatures: goodbye stink in the washing machine!

  • Baking soda

After vinegar and citric acid, sodium bicarbonate could not be missing from the roll call, which manages to eliminate the stench in the blink of an eye! Not surprisingly, in fact, it is also used to remove bad odors in the refrigerator! So, dilute 1 cup of the product in a bottle containing 1 quart of water, shake it to mix everything and pour it into the detergent tub. After that, start an empty wash, and the smell in the washing machine will disappear!

  • Lemon

Another pantry ingredient that can clean your washing machine and remove bad odors inside is lemon, which releases an intoxicating scent not only in the washing machine but also on the clothes! Therefore, pour 2/3 cup of lemon juice and dilute it in 1 quart of water, then place everything inside the washing machine drum and start the washing with a temperature of 140 °F.

N.B. I remind you that the lemon juice must be filtered well in order to remove the seeds that could clog the pipes of the appliance.

DIY washing machine care

Finally, let’s see how to make DIY washing machine cure, a product considered a natural alternative to commercially available washing machine cures. Preparing it is very simple, as all you need will be:

  • 3 cups of distilled water
  • ¼ lb. of citric acid
  • 15 drops of tea tree oil

Start by dissolving the citric acid in the distilled water and then add the drops of Tea Tree Oil. After that, close the bottle and shake it: the washer care is ready to use! To use, all you have to do is pour ½ cup of this product into the drum or tub of the washing machine and start, then, an empty wash at a temperature of at least 140 °F: goodbye stink!

To make this remedy effective and long-lasting, we recommend that you repeat it once a month. As if that were not enough, then, this mixture can be used to clean all the components of the washing machine such as the drum, porthole, gasket, detergent tray and filter. All you have to do is pour it directly onto a sponge and wipe, then, over these components: your washing machine will be as clean and deodorized as ever!


Please remember to keep the plug unplugged when cleaning the components. In case of a stubborn smell, contact a technician.

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