How To Get The Most Out Of Your Washer & Dryer
Perhaps even more than the gas or electric range, the washing machine has saved many a homemaker what must amount to years of toil. Before washing machines, doing the laundry was a chore that could take a very long time. Now, a load takes about an hour to wash, dry, fold and put away.
Because they do such good and useful work, and because they’re a bit pricey, it’s in the interest of the homeowner to make sure that their washer and dryer stay in tip-top shape for as long as possible. Here’s how an appliance savvy Toronto homeowner can get the most out of their washer and dryer:
The Washing Machine
Wipe up any spills in or on the washing machine right away. Ironically, the tops of washers and dryers are made of materials that do not bear up well under chlorine bleach, solvents or harsh detergents.
Leave the lid or door of a washing machine open for a while after each wash to allow the water inside to evaporate.
Wipe down the outside of the washing machine with a cloth dipped in lukewarm water and mild dishwashing liquid, then rinse it with clean water. Use a towel to wipe up lint, soap scum and other debris from inside the machine.
Now and then, run a hot water cycle with detergent but no laundry in the machine. If the inside of the machine is really filthy, start a presoak cycle with hot water and about a half a cup of bleach, and then let it sit for a while. Finally, put it through one short cycle and a couple of rinse cycles.
Though a homeowner can clean removable components of the machine if they carefully read the instructions, some are more comfortable calling a professional who specializes in appliance repairs. These professionals can also check the hoses to make sure that they’re sound. Replace your hose every five years or so to make sure that everything is hunky dory. A leaking hose is one of the chief causes of costly floods. Do some research and ask around to find the appliance repair company that's right for you; if you need help with broken appliances fast, you don't want to be running around in a panic trying to figure out who to call!
Protect the washing machine from cold Toronto winters by draining the hoses before the temperature drops to below freezing – this will prevent them from bursting. If the family’s going on vacation, shut off the washing machine’s water supply.
It’s important that the lint screen is cleaned out after every load. An accumulation of lint can make the dryer overheat and can even lead to a fire.
As with the washing machine, use a cloth dampened with water and dishwashing detergent to clean the outside. Then, rinse with clear water and dry. The inside of the dryer should also be wiped with a damp cloth after it’s dried clothes that haven’t been in the washing machine first (bathing suits straight from the pool or beach are an example).
Have a contractor who performs appliance repairs in to check and troubleshoot the exhaust duct at least once a year for optimal performance.