June 1, 2015
Building construction professional Gregory Muske provided an in-depth instruction guide to dealing with mold growth – as well as preventing mold growth – in clothes washers, clothes dryers, dishwashers and refrigerators in “Large Appliances and Mold” in his mold blog Biotoxin Journey.
He wrote about front-loading washing machines:
To begin, the machines have all sorts of nooks and crannies both inside the plastic tub and on the outside of the stainless steel drum. In the case of the inner drum, these consist of a counter-balancing ring, clothes paddles, and a three-armed drive casting that are fastened to the drum. In the case of the outer plastic tub, the tub has all sorts of ribbing molded into its shape at the back to provide support for the electric motor. This ribbing creates an array of pockets for debris to collect. Even without all these crevices, the number of small diameter corrugated hoses is enough of a lint trap to easily collect plenty of food for mold. Remember, all you need is water and food before some kind of mold starts to grow.
You can forget about the front door seal that everyone drones on and on about. Granted, the seal has folds that can hold water and foster mold growth. However, the real issue is on the other side of that seal between the drum and tub along with the insides of those totally asinine corrugated pipes. The reason the rubber door gasket starts to get moldy is because the drum and tub are already coated with mold that then spews out through all the holes in the inner stainless drum and take hold on the gasket. By the time you see mold on the gasket, your whole house has been contaminated. In the pictures, you can see the black scum growing inside the pipes and plastic inlets of my machine that I tore it apart, as well as, the dried mold and scum coating the inner drum.
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