If you provide tenants with washers and dryers – specifically front loading models – it is important to keep in mind that while these units are more efficient, they require more attention than your average top loading models.
When walking new tenants through units with these types of washers, it is important to be sure that they understand the role they play in keeping these machines in top shape. While some of these tips are more commonly known, some are not, as evidenced by the talk in the news of class action lawsuits against manufacturers: http://t.co/ZkVdkurBWw
1: When buying detergent, it is essential that the detergent have the HE designation. Using standard soap is a no-no.
2: When putting soap in the machine, all you need is a tablespoon or two. No need to put in as much as you would in a standard machine. Think about it – you are using a fraction of the water, so you can use a fraction of the soap.
3: When a load has just completed, it is important to leave the door ajar and let the unit air out. These units have to seal up in order for the water not to leak out the door. This means that if you take your clothes out of the machine and immediately close the door, you are sealing in the remaining moisture. This leads to your washer smelling musty and getting mildew around the plastic door seal. Once the mildew gets into the soft plastic, you will never get rid of the discoloration.
4: It is important to periodically run a load of white clothes with bleach or use washing machine cleaner like Affresh. Unless you are very good about letting your unit dry out thoroughly between loads, you will still get a little mustiness in your machine. If you don’t use bleach, you need to use cleaner to make sure you are doing something to combat the smell that will develop.
5: It is not a bad idea to wipe the door seal and it’s crevices with a sanitizing wipe of some kind periodically. For the same reasons you sanitize the the machine itself, it is good to be sure nothing is growing in the door seal.
If your tenants do not follow these guidelines, there is a very good chance that you will get a smelly, mildewy machine back when they leave. It is extremely rare (pretty much never) that a tenant knows these things when they move in, so it is essential to educate them and help them understand in advance the consequences of their inaction.