How to maintain your washing machine

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Image of a Washing Machine

How to maintain your washing machine

We received a visit from Andrew Crush (Engineer) from Bosch to repair my washing machine.

We couldn’t open the filter system at the front of the machine because there seemed to be some kind of blockage behind it.  The issue was that a few screws had been left in a jacket pocket and I hadn’t removed them before putting them in the wash!  The screws had lodged firmly behind it and we couldn’t open the filter at the front of the machine.

Andrew repaired the machine and showed us what was behind it.  Quite a lot of debris including screws, a few hair clips and a couple of hair bobbles!  Andrew advised us that the callout could have been prevented, so we asked him what we could do to prevent further engineer call outs.

The answers were surprisingly simple!

How to keep it clean

To be on the safe side, you should ensure that the machine is switched off from the mains prior to cleaning it.

Drawer

Once a fortnight, take out the drawer and give it a good clean.  To get into the crevices, you can use a small slim bottle cleaner (click here to view a selection).

Image of bottle cleaner
Bottle Cleaner

Once you have cleaned the drawer, leave it to the side.

Inside Draw Area

Once a fortnight using a slim bottle cleaner, clean inside the area where the drawer goes in.  You may find lots of grooves above the drawer area and around it spotted with black mould.  Get all of this out using the bottle cleaner and give it a good wipe with a little bleach on a damp cloth.  Put the drawer back in.

Now it’s time to clean the drum.

Drum

Once a fortnight, put on your gloves and pour a few drops of distilled vinegar on a cloth and wipe the inside of the drum.

With your gloves still on, put a little spot of washing up liquid on a fresh cloth and run it under the tap.  Now carefully pull open the rubber ring (see below).  This part can be a little awkward, but you need to wipe around this area completely.  Repeat the above process until the area has been cleaned and the ring is free from debris and grime.

Now set the empty washing machine on a 60-degree wash without any detergent or select the drum cycle wash is your machine has one.  When the cycle has been completed, set the machine on a quick wash adding a little washing powder/liquid.

If your washing machine still smells after doing this, check your drains as smells can feedback to through the machine if there is a blockage.

Filter

Check the filter once a month, remove any debris to help prevent more serious blockages.

The main causes of blockages to the filter system which stops the machine from draining water are:

  • Collar stiffeners (most popular item found)
  • Coins
  • Hair grips
  • Screws
  • Nails
  • Small tool bits

A two pence coin is exactly the same size as the drain pumps entrance.  If the coin flips to a position that completely covers the drain pump entrance, you will need to call an engineer to remove it.

Descale

Use a washing machine descaler every six months.  Once you have used the descaler, put the machine through a 90-degree wash with no detergent or washing inside the machine.

Before every wash

  • Empty those pockets before placing items in the machine.
  • Remove collar stiffeners from shirts and broaches from blouses or jackets.

After every wash

  • Always leave the drum empty and the door slightly ajar.
  • Never leave wet washing in the machine, take it straight out after every wash.

To see a range of the latest Bosch washing machines, click here.

Image of bosch washing machine

Washing Machine Descaler (click to view)

Image of a pack of washing machine descalers
Washing Machine Descaler

This product removes limescale quickly and effectively.  In hard water areas, washing machines should be descaled every six months and dishwashers once a year.

This video shows you exactly how to clear your washing machines filter: