A used washer and dryer maintenance checklist is an important part of owning these hard-working appliances. Keeping your used washer and dryer working as long as possible will ensure they’re cleaning and drying your clothes efficiently and effectively.
Plus, maintaining them is also a great way to make your home more sustainable. The longer your used washer and dryer work, the longer they avoid going to a landfill, and the longer you can go in between buying new appliances.
The following tasks can help your used washer and dryer run reliably for as long as possible:
Used Washer Maintenance Tips
Washing machines are either front-loading or top-loading. Luckily, the following maintenance tips can help both models do a great job of cleaning everything you need it to:
1. Wash the Insides of Your Washing Machine
Washing machines can accumulate oil and grime in the pipes, and around the cleaning drum. Scheduling regular maintenance washes will help remove this unwanted build-up.
To do this, you should:
- Set the water temperature to hot
- Add a normal amount of laundry detergent
- Run the washing machine with nothing in it
You can also purchase washing machine cleaning tablets to use instead of laundry detergent. For instance, Affresh Washing Machine Cleaner Tablets are designed to remove gunk and grime from inside a washing machine.
2. Inspect the Water Hoses
A regular inspection of the water hoses on your washing machine is another item for your used washer maintenance checklist. Look for cracks or breaks in the hoses, and check for water on the floor.
If you spot issues in the hoses:
- Turn off the water supply for the washer
- Unplug the washer
- Replace the hoses
Many used washing machines come with older rubber hoses, which can dry and crack with age. Instead, replace them with bendable stainless steel hoses, which are more durable and will last longer with less chance of leaks.
3. Clean the Exterior & Underside
Use a mild cleaning product to wash the outside of your washing machine several times a year. Be sure to include carefully cleaning around the dials to remove any accumulated dust or grime.
If you see any scratches or nicks, you can also purchase touch-up paint at a local hardware store to dab onto any scratches on the machine.
Meanwhile for the underside of your washing machine, pay attention to this area especially if it sits next to your dryer. This typical setup means washers often get lint underneath them. Run a duster with a long handle under the washer several times a year. A yardstick covered with a lightweight towel is another option.
Used Dryer Maintenance Tips
A used dryer needs regular maintenance to work efficiently, so adding these maintenance tips will help:
1. Clean the Venting Duct
It’s important to clean your dryer’s venting system at least once a year. (The venting duct runs from the back of the dryer to the outside.) Luckily, you can pick up a 12-piece vent cleaner kit from Holikme to help with this task.
If during cleaning you notice cracked ducts, replace them with a new dryer vent kit. But for long ducts that go inside walls before reaching the outside vent, calling a duct cleaning company to help with this task is wise.
2. Balance Your Used Dryer
A well-balanced dryer will perform better and last longer than one that isn’t level. Dryers that aren’t balanced can shake and wobble, which can cause internal parts to break or become unaligned.
Your used washer may have adjustable legs to help level out the machine. Otherwise, you can use thin pieces of wood to help level the appliance. Another option is to buy a stand for a front-loading appliance.
Whatever your solution, be sure to check your dryer every few months to ensure it’s even.
3. Clean the Inside & Underside
Every few months, clean the inside of your dryer with a damp cloth. You can also use a mild detergent to clean off any stains you find.
Dryers often get dust underneath them. The same day you clean the inside, run a microfiber appliance duster under the dryer to pick up and remove dust bunnies.
Tips for Buying a Used Washer & Dryer
There are many benefits to buying a used washer and dryer. Pre-owned appliances are often more affordable, and it’s also a sustainable option. But you also have to be careful that you’re getting a high-quality appliance that won’t break after a few cycles.
As Appliance Recycler notes, when shopping for a used washer check to see:
- That the spin cycle works
- If there’s visible rust in the tub
- If it makes odd noises when running
When shopping for a used dryer, check to see that the machine:
- Is Energy Star or HE-rated for efficiency
- Uses the same power source (gas or electric) that’s in your home
- Has all of the features you want, including temperature and fabric options
Resist the urge to buy a used washer or dryer from a garage sale or Craigslist. Consumer Reports advises shopping at a used appliances store or local repair shop because these types of shops typically have technicians who inspect the used washers and dryers before selling them. They may also have replaced old parts and fixed any other issues before resale.
Final Thoughts On Used Washer & Dryer Maintenance
Major appliances can be major headaches if you don’t maintain them properly. Fortunately, caring for your used washer and dryer isn’t a time-consuming or difficult task.
From cleaning the inside of your washing machine and inspecting the water hoses, to making sure the ducts on your dryer are clear and the underside is free of dust, your used washer and dryer should last for years to come.