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How to Clean A Washing Machine Filter

A clogged washing machine filter can cause all sorts of problems. Keep your machine in shape with this easy guide to cleaning washing machine filters.

How to Clean A Washing Machine Filter: A Complete Guide for all machine types

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on how to clean a washing machine filter. This article provides step-by-step instructions and tips to ensure your washing machine filter remains clean and efficient. 

Whether you have a top-load or front-load washing machine, maintaining a clean filter prevents lint buildup and increases your machine's longevity. Here is how to easily keep your washing machine filter in fighting shape for years to come. 


Understanding the Lint Filter in Your Washing Machine


What is a lint filter in a washing machine? 

A lint filter, also known as a lint trap or debris filter, is a vital washing machine component. Its primary role is to capture lint, hair, and other debris that may come off your clothes during washing. The lint filter traps these particles and prevents them from clogging the drain and circulating back onto your freshly washed garments.


Where is the lint filter located?

The lint filter location varies depending on the type and model of your washing machine. In top-load washing machines, you will typically find the lint filter near the agitator, the central post that helps move the clothes around during the wash cycle. It's usually a removable filter that you can access by lifting or pulling it out.

The lint filter is usually positioned inside the front door on front-load washing machines. You can locate it by opening the door and inspecting the bottom-right corner. Some front-load machines have a visible filter access panel on the bottom of the device that you can remove to access the lint filter, while others may require you to unscrew or unlatch a compartment to reach it.


The Importance of a clean washing machine filter

While some may think that you do not need to clean a washing machine at all, a clean washing machine filter is essential in maintaining optimal performance, ensuring fresh laundry, and prolonging the lifespan of your appliance.

Don’t forget to check out our guide on popular laundry myths busted

Here's why you should be cleaning your washing machine filter:

Preserves clothing quality

One of the key reasons to clean the washing machine filter regularly is to safeguard the quality of your clothes. The filter accumulates lint, fibres, and fabric debris during each wash cycle. If left unattended, these particles can find their way back onto your clothes, causing lint to cling to the fabric and leaving behind visible residues.

Have you ever noticed those annoying balls of lint on clothes after washing? 

This can be a result of a dirty or clogged filter. Cleaning the washing machine filter prevents lint from transferring onto your clothes, ensuring they come out clean, fresh, and lint-free after each wash.


Enhances the machines performance

A clean washing machine filter is essential for optimal machine performance. When the filter becomes clogged with lint and debris, it can lead to several issues.

Firstly, a clogged filter slows water flow, resulting in insufficient rinsing and inadequate cleaning of your clothes. You may find that your garments come out of the machine less clean and with residual stains. Regularly cleaning the filter helps maintain proper water flow and ensures that your clothes receive thorough cleaning during each cycle.

Secondly, a dirty filter can also prolong the duration of your wash cycles. When the filter is clogged, the machine works harder to compensate for the restricted water flow, leading to longer wash times. Cleaning the filter can reduce the wash cycle duration and save time and power consumption.


Prevents drainage issues

Neglecting to clean the washing machine filter can have consequences beyond the appliance itself. Lint in the washing machine results in debris accumulating in the filter can find their way into the drainage system, potentially causing blockages. Over time, this can lead to water backing up in the machine or overflowing from the drum, resulting in water damage and may result in expensive repairs.


Maintains machine longevity

Proper maintenance extends the lifespan of your appliance. When the filter is clogged, the washing machine works harder, putting unnecessary strain on its components. 

The accumulation of lint and debris in the filter can also lead to mould and mildew, causing unpleasant odours and damage to the machine's internal parts. Cleaning the filter regularly creates a cleaner and healthier environment within the washing machine, reducing the risk of mould and prolonging its overall lifespan.

For more information on how to clean your washing machine with little effort, refer to our complete guide.

How to clean your washing machine filter

This section will guide you through cleaning the filter in your washing machine, including those with removeable and fixed filters. By following these steps, you can ensure your device operates at its best and your laundry comes out clean and smelling fresh!


How to clean a front load washing machine filter:

Front-load washing machines have a slightly different design than top-load models. Still, the cleaning process for the filter remains relatively straightforward.

Follow these steps to clean the filter in a front-load washing machine:

  1. Switch off the machine: Before starting, turn off the washing machine and unplug it from the power source to ensure your safety.
  1. Locate the filter access panel: Open the front door of your front-load washing machine. Look for the filter access panel, which is typically positioned in the bottom-right corner. Some devices have a visible panel that can be removed on the bottom of the machine, at the front. Others may require unscrewing or unlatching a compartment to access the filter. Check your machines instruction book if you have trouble locating the filter. 
  1. Remove the filter: Carefully remove the filter from its housing. If the filter is fixed and cannot be removed, use a non-abrasive brush or cloth to clean around the filter area.
  1. Clean the filter: Rinse the filter under lukewarm running water, using your fingers or a soft brush to dislodge any lint or debris. Consider using a laundry cleanser or Dettol Washing Machine Cleaner to ensure a thorough and hygienic clean. These products are developed to eliminate dirt and bacteria, leaving your washing machine fresh while reducing odour.
  1. Dry and replace the filter: Allow the filter to air dry completely. Ensure no moisture is left on the filter before placing it back into the washing machine. 
  1. Close the Filter Access Panel: Carefully reinsert the filter into its housing. Close the filter access panel or compartment, ensuring it is tightly sealed.

By following these steps, you can effectively clean the filter in your front-load washing machine, promoting optimal performance and maintaining the cleanliness of your laundry all year round. 


Dettol offers a comprehensive range of laundry products that make cleaning your washing machine a breeze and keep your laundry smelling fresh. Remember to always get guidance before trying new products and cleaning techniques on your washing machine. You can receive more laundry expert advice with our comprehensive guides. 



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