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There are several easy steps you can take to help get rid of front-load washer mold and prevent it from returning. To remove mold that is already present, you can wipe down the interior of the machine with bleach or another cleaning agent. You can also add a small amount of powdered dish soap to an empty load, and run the washing machine on the hottest available setting, then allow it to complete the cycle and drain before wiping it down. Once the mold is gone, it may help to leave the washer door open between loads so that it can dry out inside. Finally, switching from a liquid soap to a powdered detergent can help stop new mold from forming.
A common cause of front-load washer mold is the excess suds that can result from liquid detergents. These suds may escape the washer drum and get into parts of the washing machine that will not readily dry out between loads. If the door is shut after each wash, this can make the problem even worse. Since certain parts of the machine may never dry out under these conditions, front-load washer mold can begin to grow, resulting in clothes that smell bad after being washed.
In addition to liquid soaps creating too large a volume of soap suds, certain powdered detergents may cause a similar problem. Many powdered detergents that are marketed as being high efficiency will tend to create less suds while still doing the job of cleaning the clothes. These advanced detergents are often designed specifically for front-load washing machines. Simply using this type of detergent for a number of loads may even remove the mold without any further action.
In order to remove the smell your clothes may have picked up from the front-load washer mold, you may need to run several loads with bleach. It may also help to suppress future mold infestations by using bleach on a regular basis. By adding a liquid bleach to white loads and a color-safe powdered bleach to colored loads, you may be able to keep new front-load washer mold from ever taking hold.
If your front-load washer includes a soap dispenser, it may also be a prime location for mold to grow. Many of these soap dispensers can be removed for cleaning, and cleaning them regularly may stop mold from growing. It can also help to put some baking soda into the washer drum after you run a load. Baking soda can help absorb any unpleasant odors within the washing machine, and it will simply be washed away the next time you run the machine.