How to clean washing machine drum?

Keeping the washing machine clean is as imperative as washing your clothes. Only, washing machines need less frequent cleaning. It would be best if there was a scheduled cleaning plan so that the machine runs as smoothly and effectively as possible.

Therefore, it is essential to know what can happen if it is not cleaned and how it can be cleaned at home.
Regardless of the type of washing machine, be it a front loading machine or top loading one, the drum inside needs to be in top condition. 

What happens if you don’t clean your washing machine?

washing machine model

When you use the washing machine regularly, and over many cycle runs, it will collect mildew, mold, dirt, bacteria, and soap residue. Over time, these can affect the cleaning and leave the clothes with bad odors. If it is placed on the balcony, it can become dusty, too. The dust can also enter the washing machine. 

There are a few essential steps to keeping a clean washing machine.

✔ Run a full cycle after adding a half cup of liquid chlorine bleach into the dispenser. Bleach can get rid of bacteria and remove mold.
✔ Run the machine for a second cycle to rinse and spin so that all remnants of bleach leave the machine along with any leftover dirt.
✔ Using a soft toothbrush, remove the dirt from the soap dispenser. Some dispensers can be removed and washed under a hot water supply. Reinsert the dispenser after wiping it dry.
✔ In the case of a front-loading washer, dry the rubber seal, which is where water collects and where mold and mildew are likely to grow.

Now, for a list of simple tips and tricks to clean your washing machine at home:

You will need the following cleaning supplies:

You will need the following cleaning supplies;

✔ Microfiber cloth
✔ Distilled white vinegar
✔ Baking soda
✔ Toothbrush
✔ Spray bottle

Vinegar and baking soda can work wonders to deep clean the washing machine. Now that you have all the supplies handy, we can start the cleaning process. We will start with cleaning a front loading washing machine. 

How To Clean Front Loading Washing Machines?

Washing machine trends

Spray The Drum

To clean a front load washing machine, use the spray bottle filled with white vinegar, and spray around the drum. Vinegar is great as a cleaning solution. Then, wipe the wash drum with a microfiber cloth thoroughly. Vinegar helps in removing soap residue, hard water buildup, and other stains, including grease.

Wipe The Rubber Gaskets

Rubber gaskets seal the door of a front load machine and need proper cleaning. The rubber seal is where you will find soapy residue, cloth fiber, hair, and mold. Wipe the rubber gasket dry.

Clean The Detergent Dispenser

Here again, you will find some dried soap scum. You can clean this by pouring two cups of distilled white vinegar into it and running the washing machine after setting the water temperature at the highest level. Program the machine to run on the longest wash cycle.

Baking Soda To Clean The Drum

Half a cup of baking soda can go into the wash drum directly. Just as the step above, program the machine to run on the longest wash cycle with the water temperature at its hottest setting.

Wipe The Door and Front

The exterior of the washing machine is just as important to keep clean. So, spray some distilled vinegar onto the microfiber cloth and wipe down the door with all its crevices, knobs, and control panel. Also, wipe the front of the machine thoroughly. A paper towel can also be useful to wipe off any moisture.

Let in fresh air

Once a cleaning cycle is complete, keep the door open for some time. The washing machine will do better if it gets air-dried after every wash. Fresh air will prevent mold and mildew.

How To Clean Top Loading Washing Machine At Home?

top loading washing machine

Add Vinegar And Start The Wash Cycle

If you have one of the top loading machines, program it to run at the hottest setting. Pour in four cups of white vinegar and let the machine fill up with water. Pause for a few minutes so that the water and vinegar can work on the insides of the washer drum. Power it on and let it run the longest cycle.
Use the microfiber cloth and a little vinegar to wipe the entire surface. Ensure that you clean the washer lid, sides, back, and every inch of the machine.

A fully automatic washing machine cleans clothes better. It uses more water, removes 99% of detergent, removes stains, and leaves the clothes cleaner. It also leaves the clothes almost dry and unwrinkled.

Pay Attention To The Detergent Dispenser

The top loader has a detergent dispenser that is also used as a fabric softener dispenser. You can use a toothbrush to scrub the openings clean.

Baking Soda To Clean

After the first cycle with vinegar, run a second cycle with baking soda, also known as sodium carbonate. Pour a cup of baking soda and set the machine on the hottest and highest setting.

Leave it open to air-dry

All washing machines benefit from air drying after each wash cycle. Keeping the door cracked open a little after a wash can help prevent mildew.

3 Common Washing Machine Mistakes People Make

1. Too much detergent

People think that adding more detergent will get them cleaner clothes. That is a myth. It will only increase soap scum in the drum and soap dispenser. In a normal cycle, it is best to add the exact amount of detergent mentioned in the owner’s manual to avoid excess suds.

2. Mix whites with non-colorfast clothes

People in a hurry always put the clothes together and without separating the whites from other clothes that run color. They spend a lot of time trying to make the whites white again. Sometimes, these clothes cannot be salvaged and are ruined forever.

3. Overloading

It is an easy mistake to make when you have too many dirty clothes piled up. Overloading in a washing cycle doesn’t allow the clothes to move around freely in the soap water. So, they don’t get washed properly. This is true of front load washers as well as the top loading washer.


1. How to use Comfort in Washing Machine

Comfort is a conditioner that is used after the clothes are washed in the detergent. You can pour a cap full directly into the washer before the final rinse cycle.

2. What is tub clean in IFB washing machine?

IFB washing machines include a run a tub clean program. This program allows you to clean the inner filter, lint filter, and inside of the door. By using a descaler, the limescale deposits left from hard water can be removed.

3. What Are 3 Compartments In A Washing Machine Drawer?

Pre-wash compartment: This compartment can be used for a full rinse before the wash cycle if the clothes are too dirty and require a heavy duty wash.
Fabric softener compartment: This compartment is for pouring a conditioner like Comfort, starch, and other fabric softeners.
Main wash compartment: Here, you put in the detergent powder. Do not add too much detergent. It is best to stick to the measures given in the instructions based on the load quantity.

4. Which washing powder is the best in India?

Ariel washing powder or liquid is considered the best in India. It is expected to remove all stains in one wash, and to keep your white clothes bright.

Wrapping Up

If you want to ensure that your washing machine runs optimally, keeping it clean is essential. Airing it after every wash and wiping the drum and compartments dry with a microfiber cloth will help. A deep cleaning every month that includes the drum and all the filters will be ideal.

About the Author

Neha Pik

Neha Tiwari, Member at

Neha is the one who is aware of current trends and best practices in our desi community. She also helps and educates people looking for a solution to their problems via online. Her work has been published on countless blogs and notable magazines.