Clean out dryer lint filter before and after each load to maximize efficiency.
Wash lint screen with warm water and soap every 3 months or so, especially if you use dryer sheets. Dryer sheets build up wax residue in your dryer causing it to lose efficiency and eventually not work. Best to not use them at all and use wool dryer balls instead to increase the life of your machine.
Clean the drum. Give the inside a wipe down with a microfiber cloth and a bit of rubbing alcohol to remove any dryer sheet residue. Let it dry thoroughly and leave door open for awhile after doing this before using dryer.
Don’t overload. Over-sized loads will overwork the machine causing expensive repairs.
Don’t run the washer or dryer when you aren’t home or when you are sleeping.
Keep the entire area clean and free of clutter, boxes and other materials. Don’t store items on the top of the washer and dryer.
Inspect the dryer exhaust duct for crimps, obstructions, and unnecessary bends every few months. Can cause heat buildup that will blow thermal fuses and make dryer not heat or work at all.
Remove and clean out the entire exhaust duct line from dryer to exterior once a year. Clogged ducts cause thousands of house fires every year.
Check the vent cap outside. It’s common for lawn debris, dirt or snow to build up around the vent. Clear it out every so often to let the air flow freely.
Replace vinyl or plastic exhaust vents with metal. Plastic exhaust vents are more likely to catch fire. Play it safe with metal.
Check water inlet hoses. Every few months or so, make sure there are no bulges, cracks or leaks and the fittings are tight.
Don’t overload. Oversized loads can cause catastrophic damage to your washing machine, so do smaller loads.
Use the right detergent. Make sure you’re using the right stuff for your model. Most energy-efficient washers require a low-sudsing detergent.
Use the right amount of detergent. Too much detergent will leave a residue and is hard on your washer. Pods make it easy, but if you’re using liquid, measure according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Clean inside the drum and dispensers. This will help keep it clean and smelling fresh. Every 1 to 3 months, depending on use, run an empty load of hot water with 2 cups of white vinegar on Heavy cycle. In the middle of the wash cycle, add ½ cup of detergent. Let the full cycle complete.
Wipe down the drum, door and gasket. Doing this once a month will help ensure the washer won’t give off odors that can seep into your laundry. Use equal parts water and vinegar to clean the gasket.
Leave the door open after a load. To reduce the chance of mildew and bad smells, always keep the door open when not in use.
Move clean laundry to the dryer shortly after it’s done. Leaving wet clothes in the washer can create mold and mildew.
Don’t slam the door. The locking mechanism is plastic and slamming the door can cause an expensive repair.
Check and clean drain pump filter on front-loading washers. Consult your owner’s manual for location. A clogged filter can cause washing machine to not spin or drain.