Washing machine emits unpleasant smell

Last updated 05/05/2022 08:00


  • The washing machine emits an unpleasant smell
  • How to clean the washing machine?
  • Rubber seal on washing machines develops dark or black mould spots

Applies to

  • Front loader washing machines (integrated and freestanding)
  • Top loader washing machines


1. Check if the drain hose is correctly connected to the siphon, or your waste installation is equipped with a siphon. 

2. Dispense the correct amount of detergent, avoid using only cold cycles and run hot cycles/wash regularly.

3. Dispense the correct amount of detergent and conditioner according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

4. Always leave the door ajar/slightly open after every wash and, if possible, open the dispenser drawer slightly at the same time so that the machine can dry out between washes. Assure that the appliance is installed in the room with good ventilation

5. Check whether the washing machine heats up by starting a very hot wash. 

The door should remain warm during the cycle (can be checked after about half to one hour).

6. Regularly carry out a 90°C service wash using a washing machine cleaner to avoid unpleasant smells and marks around the door. 

For detailed procedures refer to the user manual supplied with your appliance. 

We also recommend running a cleaner through the appliance on a regular basis. If the washing machine hasn't been cleaned on a regular basis then 'Super Clean for Washing Machines' should be used. This powerful cleaner removed residues from the door seal, pipes and drums that can build up over time.

For regular ongoing use, we suggest using 'Clean and Care washing machine cleaner'. This 3-in-1 hygienic cleaner, descales, degreases and cleans dishwashers and washing machines. Use once a month or after 30 cycles. 

Other laundry cleaning products are available if you Click here.

7. Clean the detergent dispenser:

  • Remove any spillage or residue in each compartment by rinsing it under hot running tap water. 
  • Remove the dispenser and use a suitable brush (clean it with an old toothbrush) to remove any dirt and dried soap powder/liquid from each section
To see how to remove the detergent draw Click Here

8. Clean the pump and fluff filter, including the pump blade (if the pump blade is visible, rotate it with a pencil and refit the filter). For detailed procedures refer to the user manual supplied with your appliance.

  • Turn off the appliance.
  • Open the door to the fluff filter and place the drip tray underneath.
  • Empty any water out of the machine by opening the drain hose next to the filter.
  • Remove the filter by turning it anti-clockwise (several times firmly by hand).
  • Clean the filter and pump housing under running water and refit the filter.
  • Close the drain hose and put it back in its original place.
  • Close the flap to the fluff filter.

9. Clean the washing machine’s seal:

Rubber seals on washing machines often develop dark or black mould spots.

  • You can remove the mould using sodium carbonate crystals, thick bleach or dishwasher cleaner, which helps to dissolve any stubborn mould and soap powder residue.
  • Be sure to wear rubber gloves and protective goggles during this cleaning operation.

10. Cleaning the washing machine externally:

  • Use a cloth soaked in a mild universal detergent or washing-up liquid, because washing machines are often manufactured from baked-on enamel. 
  • Carefully wipe down along the outside of the washing machine.
  • You may find that fluff and splashes of washing powder have formed thick, greasy stains on the washing machine.
  • A little warm water and a cloth are usually enough to clean up the area.
  • Try cleaning in corners and edges using a cotton bud.

11. Contact an Authorized Service Centre.

If the above suggestions did not solve the problem, we recommend requesting a visit by a service engineer.

Important: You should not call out an engineer for cleaning advice unless the appliance is displaying an error.

If you found the following information helpful, please give us a thumbs up below. If this information did not resolve your question, all constructive feedback is welcome 

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