How To Maintain Washers and Dryers to Extend Their Lifespans

How much did you pay for your washer and dryer? Are you ready to pay just as much in two years? Or maybe tomorrow?

Many homeowners mistakenly believe that their appliances can work for years without any effort on their part. They’re surprised when washers and dryers break down after a year of work is truly genuine.

Meanwhile, each appliance needs care and maintenance to last as long as possible. All you have to do is give it a little of your attention. In this article, we’ll teach you how to do it.

Ultimate Washing Machine Maintenance 101

Let’s start at the very beginning. The installation. Even if you’ve had the washer for a while, you can still fix some of the unfortunate mistakes made during installation.

If you’ve just bought one, you are in luck. You have all the chances of extending its lifespan.

1. Check Installation Nuances

While fixing electrical and piping connections may be out of your league, what you can and should do is check the leveling. Is the washer leveled? If it’s not, you’ll see it jumping around during the cycle. While it may not affect the quality of its work immediately, it will eventually cause damage and leaks.

Your washer has leveling legs. Adjust them so the machine is perfectly leveled. While you are leveling the appliance, inspect it. If some of the connections seem to be off, call professional technicians.

Meanwhile, check if the machine is at least four inches away from the wall so hoses don’t kink.

2. Run a Maintenance Wash

At least once a month, you should run a maintenance wash. Do it more often if you notice the following problems:

·         Your white clothing is looking greyish.

·         The dark residue is left on the colored clothing.

·         You see buildup around door seals and the drum.

·         You notice mold formation.

·         An unpleasant smell is coming from inside the machine.

If you have a new washer, it probably has a pre-set maintenance cycle. So all you have to do is put a special bleach-containing detergent for a maintenance wash inside the machine and run it.

If you don’t have a pre-set cycle, run the longest and hottest cycle your machine allows. Then set it to the highest spin cycle. Remember, the washer must be empty.

The maintenance wash can get rid of bacteria, mold, buildup, mildew, and many other unpleasant things inside your machine. Just because you don’t see them, it doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

3. Inspect the Machine for Damage

Make a close inspection of your machine at least once a month. If you notice any damage, call the repair service. According to technicians at Tampa Appliance Repair, you can prevent the majority of washer problems simply by discovering them on time.

Make sure you take time searching for a respectable repair company in your area. An improper repair could reduce the lifespan of your appliance.

4. Pay Attention to Regular Maintenance

After each wash, do a visual inspection of the machine. Remove dirt and grime with soapy water. Take advantage of the below tips:

·         Keep the lid open for at least 12 hours after each run. It prevents unpleasant odors and mold formation.

·         Remove the lint filter and clean it. The dirtier the filter is, the harder the machine works, and the sooner it breaks down.

·         Use the amount of the detergent mentioned in the manual. Too much detergent can leave residue on your clothing. In some machines, excessive detergent can cause too much foam and leak out of the washer.

·         Don’t overload the machine. Overloading leads to poor washing quality, leaks, disbalancing, and damage.

·         Remove laundry from the machine right after the cycle is over. Keeping it there can cause mold and mildew formation.

Finally…read the manual. Yes, that booklet has plenty of interesting information inside. You may be surprised at how little you know about the washer maintenance. You could also learn some useful tips to make your laundry experience better.

Ultimate Dryer Maintenance 101

If you can’t imagine your life without a dryer, give it a little attention. Even if it’s seemingly less complex than the washer, this machine needs proper maintenance just as much.

Did you know that the dryer is one of the most dangerous appliances in your home? According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than 14,000 fires every year are caused by dryers. The most common reason is a lack of maintenance.

1. Daily Maintenance

If you are using your dryer every day, you should maintain it daily. If not, do it after each load. By the way, if you do two loads in a row, it doesn’t count as one.

·         Clean the lint compartment and the lint filter.

·         Check the machine for foreign objects.

·         Inspect the insides of the dryer. Make sure to clean the surface if there is any dirt or grime stuck on it.

·         If you want to simplify the daily cleaning, check pockets of your clothing before putting it inside the dryer. This way, you can avoid unpleasant gum, lipstick, crayon, and other stains.

·         Do a visual inspection of the machine. If something seems strange, don’t run it. Call the repair service.

2. Monthly Maintenance

Even if you do careful daily maintenance, you need to take advantage of these monthly care tips as well.

·         Check the dryer exhaust vent. It may have cracks or lint stuck inside. Clean the vent and call professionals for repair, if needed. You can vacuum the duct to ensure that none of the residue is stuck inside. Or you can purchase a long brush to reach inside it.

·         Inspect the dryer carefully. Move it away from the wall to check all the piping and wiring. Many people place dryers on top of washers. This could be harmful to the dryer especially if the washer isn’t balanced. Check for cracks.

·         Check your energy bills. Improperly installed and used appliances usually have high energy consumption. By keeping track of your bills, you can identify the problem.

·         Clean the moisture sensor. Dryer sheets tend to cover it with a filmy coating that interferes with its work. Use isopropyl alcohol on a cotton swab to remove the film.

3. Annual Maintenance

Ideally, you should call a professional technician to inspect your dryer (and washer too) annually. An expert can identify a problem better and faster than an average homeowner can. The cost of such an inspection is much lower than the price of eventual repair and replacement.

Here is what you can do on your own:

·         Check all dryer belts for cracks. Even if you see slight wear and tear, you should consider a replacement. If the belt breaks, the damage could be serious.

·         Clean the entire machine with soapy water with a cup of white vinegar.

·         Check and clean the outside dryer vent.

4. Simple Rules

Yes, you can’t avoid reading the manual here either. Find out what the dryer operation rules are and follow them. Each dryer can have its own nuances. So when you get a new machine, try to learn as much as you can about it.

·         Don’t overload the dryer. You won’t just get wrinkled clothing, you may damage the machine.

·         Separate heavy garments from light ones and dry them separately. You can reduce energy consumption.

·         Run several loads in a row instead of taking a break. This way the dryer only has to heat up once.

·         Install your dryer in a warm area. If the room isn’t heated properly, the dryer would have to work harder to warm up, thus wasting energy and reducing its lifespan.

Final Thoughts

It will take you less time to care for your appliances every day than it took you to read the article. Don’t skip any of the above steps and you can enjoy your washer and dryer for years to come.

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