Picture this: It’s your designated chores and errands day. Perhaps you’ve already done your grocery run, cleaned the bathroom, or mowed the lawn. Next up on your list? Laundry.
Eventually, you hoist up your basket full of dirty fabric and begin the march to your front-loading washing machine, only to be blasted in the face with the heavy, pungent smell of mildew upon opening the door.
Are you really sure your clothes are going to get cleaner in there?
If this sounds familiar, it’s important to know you’re not alone. In fact, finding mold in your front-loading washing machine is a commonly occurring problem in many homes today! But if you’ve ever wondered why, exactly, that is, we’re here to provide you with the answers…
To put it simply, mold is apt to grow within front-loading washing machines due to the design of their doors. As the doors feature rubber seals that are both watertight and airtight, moisture collects in the small folds and dips of the gasket, essentially cradling hidden pockets that are ideal for mold growth.
But how you use a front loading washing machine also matters.
“If you use the wrong detergent, too much detergent, or too much fabric softener, or let the drum and gaskets stay wet between uses, mildew and mold will grow in your washer and it’ll stink,” according to a New York Times article. “Top-loaders, on the other hand, rarely end up reeking like mildew, because moisture can easily evaporate out of the unsealed top door.”
As previously stated, top-loading washing machines seldom develop mold complications to the same degree as with front-loading washing machines.
In fact, “17 percent of people who own a front-load washer say it had mold or mildew, compared with just 3 percent of those who own top-load washers,” Consumer Reports found in a study.
Thus, the best way to not fall into the aforementioned 17 percent is to regularly clean and maintain your front-loading washer. Common preventative maintenance typically involves wiping down the rubber gasket regularly and leaving the washer door ajar between laundry loads.
If mold is already present in your front-loading washer, you’ll want to start by wiping the rubber seal with a cleaner to remove existing mold particles. Be mindful to wear a mask or respirator, however, as you do not want to inhale the mold.
Next, you’ll want to scrub clean the detergent dispenser, run an empty sanitation cycle with hot water and diluted bleach, and wipe down the gasket again. Afterward, leave the door open to dry completely.
You’ll also want to be mindful, however, that your front-loading washing machine is not the only area apt to grow harmful mold and bacteria at home! Mold is liable to find a variety of warm, hidden, moisture-rich areas around the house, making it difficult to see or detect until your body begins to manifest physical symptoms akin to that of allergies or a cold.
The good news? Luce Air Quality can perform comprehensive mold inspections to put your mind at ease! Don’t wait to let mold grow beyond your reach. Instead, contact Luce Air Quality today at (904) 803-1014 to schedule your inspection and obtain solutions you can trust!