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How to Clean a Top Loading Washer | Essential Homestead

What?  Why do I need to clean my washer?

That was my initial thought.  Why does a washer get so dirty?  But when you think about it, it does clean a lot of dirt and grime especially when you live on a homestead.   So naturally, it needs some tender loving care a few times a year. Here’s how I clean a top loading washer.
clean a top loading washer
Homesteaders tend to be a frugal bunch. My washer is 23 years old. As I was washing clothes today I realized I hadn’t cleaned my washer in awhile. I am not proud of this but here’s what an older washing machine can look like after a few years of cleaning grimy stuff around a homestead.
clean a top loading washer


  • Fill the washer with HOT water then add 4 c peroxide.  Let the washer agitate for a minute then sit for an hour.  Peroxide is a great alternative to bleach.

clean a top loading washer

  • After an hour, let the washer run thru it’s longest cycle on hot water.
  • Fill with HOT water again then add 4 c vinegar.  Let the washer agitate for a minute then sit for an hour.

clean a top loading washer

  • While it’s soaking, detail all the nooks and crannies of your washer, this includes the exterior.
  • If your machine has built in dispensers, clean those too.  Remove and clean underneath.
  • If you come across anything particularly sticky, add a drop of lemon essential oil.  Lemon is great to remove sticky residue.
  • After an hour, run washer thru it’s longest cycle again.

Your washer will look sparkling clean.  Except for a few chips from wear and tear, this washer looks great again.
clean a top loading washer

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If you are interested, make sure to check out the Homesteaders section on Amazon. Here, you can find books and guides on how to easily homestead and tips on how to do it better.