Can You Run A Washing Machine On Empty To Clean It?

Can You Run a Washing Machine Empty to Clean It?

can you run a washing machine empty to clean it

You can run a machine empty to clean it. Be sure to run your washer empty every week or so to help keep it clean and extend its lifespan. Running the washing machine on empty is the easiest and most efficient way to clean the washing machine.

It helps to run an empty load if you haven’t used the washer in a while. That way, you’ll be able to remove any dirt or dust that may have settled inside. Running the load will help you make sure the washer is in good condition.

Regular empty loads will help you keep up with the condition of the washer. If something goes wrong during an empty load, you can take steps to fix the machine before you do your next load of laundry.

How to Clean Your Washing Machine

how to clean your washing machine


Even though you can clean your washing machine empty, you need to know how to clean it properly. An easy way to do this is to add hot water to the basin of the washing machine. Then, add a quart of bleach and run the machine for a minute.

Let the water and bleach sit in the washer and leave the top open for an hour. After the hour is up, close the top and run the washer as if you’re doing a load of laundry.

During the cycle, the bleach will drain from the washer tub. Then, you can add more warm water to the washer and mix it with a quart of white vinegar. You’ll follow the same steps as the bleach, so run the washer for a minute, then let it sit open for an hour before running a complete cycle.

When the cycle is over, you can clean the other parts of the washing machine. Mix the same amount of vinegar with water to create a DIY washing machine cleaner.

You can then spray that mixture on the detergent dispensers, detergent drawer, and the gasket inside the machine. It also works well for cleaning the outside of your washer.

Should You Run a New Washing Machine Empty First?

should you run a new washing machine empty first

Whenever you get a new washing machine, always run it empty before adding clothes or other fabrics. Even if you bought a new washer, you never know what might be in it. Sometimes, there may be some residue left from when the company built the machine.

Running a wash cycle is especially important if you buy a used machine. The used market can help you save a lot of money, but a used device may have deterrent residue or other debris inside.

You should run a cycle of hot water to get the residue and dust off of the inside of the basin. Follow the steps to clean any washing machine to ensure you don’t miss any nooks and crannies.

It may seem like a waste of time and resources to run a new washing machine on empty. However, you never know what might be inside it. The last thing you want is for your clothes to get dirty because of the washing machine.

Do You Need Cleaning Products or Soap for It?

do you need cleaning products or soap for it

You don’t need to use any soaps or unique cleaning products to clean your washer. As long as you run a cycle of hot water, the water can clean the machine itself. Unless there’s a massive issue with the washer, soaps won’t affect the cleaning process.

If it makes you feel better, you can use laundry detergent. However, doing that can be a waste of your detergent.

Now, you may want to use soap or cleaning products to clean the outside of the machine. If dirt gets on the outside of the machine, you can use any household cleaner. Then, you can keep the outside clean and spotless like the inside.

How Often Should You Clean Your Washing Machine?

how often should you clean your washing machine

The frequency in which you clean your washing machine depends on how much you use it. If you live alone or with one other person, you might be able to go two weeks between cleaning your washer. The same is true if you have a bigger family but don’t do laundry that often.

However, if you have an extensive household or run loads of laundry frequently, you might want to clean the washer every week. That way, you can make sure you don’t go too long before you have the chance to clean it.

Another way to determine when to clean the washer is to look at your clothes. If they don’t get as clean as they used to, you may want to clean the washer more frequently. You may see a difference in how clean your clothes get.

Even if you haven’t used the washer in a while, such as when traveling, you should clean it before using it. Cleaning your washer ensures you can remove any oils or dirt that may have collected in the washer while you were away.

How to Clean a Washing Machine Filter

how to clean a washing machine filter

Cleaning the washing machine filter is just as important as cleaning the basin. The filter protects the mechanisms inside the machine by capturing lint. Here are a few steps to follow in cleaning out the washing machine filter:

  1. Unplug your washing machine
  2. Let it drain completely
  3. Unscrew or release the filter cover
  4. Check the inside for any leftover dust
  5. Wipe the filter with a damp cloth
  6. Clean the parts around the filter
  7. Dry off the filter
  8. Screw the filter cover back on
  9. Plug in your washing machine

You should clean out the filter whenever you clean the machine itself. That way, you can keep from having too much lint settle within the filter. By minimizing the link, you can reduce the chances of lint and debris getting past it.

If you want to make sure the filter is clean for the next wash, clean the filter after the basin. After cleaning, you can collect any dust that got in when you ran the empty load.

James Marshall

About the author

James is a business management professional and consultant with a former background in maintenance, repair, and hands-on projects. He enjoys DIY tasks and maintenance around the home as well as part-time writing. Read more »