By Nanci Dixon
For those of us lucky enough to have an onboard RV washing machine, opening the door to a musty, moldy smell can be an unwelcome surprise. Especially if it’s been sitting inside and closed up for weeks, or even months at a time.
I soon discovered that in our new motorhome when I excitedly washed clothes and closed the front loading washer door. One week later it was time to wash again. Yuck! The smell practically knocked me over. After running an empty load on hot, the smell was not much better so I went online to research what was wrong with my brand-new washer. Turns out it wasn’t the washer, it was me.
Here are a few tips to keep your washer odor free:
- Dry out the drum when done.
- Dry out the seal around the drum, particularly where water pools near the drain hole.
- Periodically clean around the inside rim of the rubber seal. It is amazing the gunk and mold that can collect there.
- Dry inside of the door and leave it open. I hang the towel I wipe it out with over the door to keep it propped open. I only close the door when we are moving and then I open it again when we stop.
- Open the detergent drawer and let it dry out too.
- If there is an overpowering odor that is not uncommon. There are several washing machine cleaners on the market that will attack and diminish the odor. I like Affresh® best. The scent doesn’t overpower the small area in our motorhome, as a couple of other cleaners did.
- Some people swear by running an empty load on hot with 1/2 cup of vinegar in the detergent drawer once a month. The vinegar method has both pros and cons. It can be hard on rubber parts but is great for keeping clothes and the washing machine fresh. Adding baking soda to the drum and running on hot has also been mentioned. I have succeeded in corralling the odor with Affresh, so I have not personally tried either baking soda or vinegar. If you try it, please let me know!
I love having a washer and dryer in our motorhome and I want it to love me too!