A while back we did an article on why mold in your dishwasher is dangerous to you and your family’s health. It turns out that the dishwasher isn’t the only home appliance that is a harbor to that dangerous mold. Your washing machine is another perfect habitat for mold. Is it as dangerous as when it’s found in the machine that cleans the dishes you eat off of? Read on to find out.
How Can Mold Grow In The Washing Machine?
Washing is right there in the name. How can mold grow in something that is literally made to wash? After all, we pour steaming hot water and powerful detergents into it on a regular basis. The first problem is that those detergents aren’t made to kill mold. This leaves plenty of spores behind to grow into new mold colonies. The second problem is the fact that mold loves to live in a wet habitat and washing machines use lots of water.
Where Is Washing Machine Mold Located?
Even if you can’t see mold in the visible areas of your washing machine, it’s likely still there. The water and detergent residues are trapped in the seal of the door. In front loading washing machines, a rubber or silicon seal is placed to keep water from leaking out the front. However, this seal actually traps that water and provides a perfectly safe place for mold to grow. This I the main place that mold grows in the washing machine, but it has the ability to grow anywhere and is not limited to the seal of the door.
Can Mold In My Washer Make Me Sick?
Yes. Just like any mold, mold in the washing machine can make you sick. Symptoms are dependent on what type of mold is growing, but a general set of symptoms accompany almost all mold types. Respiratory symptoms like coughing and sneezing, along with allergy-like symptoms of runny nose, itchy eyes, and more are common because of mold. If the strain of mold is more severe, dangerous lung infections or even death could occur. Finally, since mold in the washing machine can spread its spores into the fabric of your clothes, you may also notice itching or skin rashes from the exposure.
How To Get Rid Of Mold In The Washing Machine
Getting rid of mold in your washing machine is easier than you may think. In fact, all you need is some household supplies, including vinegar and lemons. To get started, take a cup of vinegar and the juice of half a lemon. Lemons and vinegar act as natural fungicides to kill mold and keep it from growing back. The lemons will also help make your washing machine smell better after cleaning with it. You’ll need to pour this solution into the detergent opening of your washing machine and then run a cycle with hot water. This will allow the vinegar and lemon juice to get into the cracks and crevasses of your machine and kill the mold. You should also use a scrubber or paper towels to wipe off any visible mold and clean as much of the visible washing machine as you can. Doing this once every month or two months can help keep mold from growing in your washing machine and help keep you and your family safe.