How Do You Know If You Have Mold Growing Inside Your Home's Washing Machine?

Washing machines are a common spot in the home for mold to grow because they provide everything that mold needs to thrive. Mold spores are in the air everywhere outside, so you will inevitably collect some on your clothes. These spores will be spread around your washing machine whenever you wash your clothes.

When mold spores settle on an area that's damp and has a food source, they'll start growing. Mold can use the lint and stray hair that collects on your clothes as a food source, making a washing machine a perfect habitat for mold. If your washing machine smells moldy and you're wondering if it has mold growing inside it, read on to find out where you should look for it.

Examine the Door Gasket

The rubber door gasket on a front-loading washing machine is a very common place for mold to grow. Front-loading washing machines need a watertight gasket to prevent water from leaking through the front door when the washing machine is on. When you use the washing machine, water, lint, and hair will collect inside the gasket, providing all the resources that mold needs to grow.

To see if you have mold growing inside the rubber door gasket, push it apart with your fingers while wearing gloves and examine the inside with a flashlight. If there's mold growing there, you'll notice discolored patches, and your gloved fingers will pick up some of the mold.

Check the Detergent Dispenser

The detergent dispenser is another common place for mold to grow in a washing machine. It doesn't receive much ventilation, so it dries out slowly. Any organic material like lint or hair that gets into the detergent dispenser while the washing machine is on will allow mold to start growing there. To examine the detergent dispenser, open it up and look for patches of mold.

Fully Inspect the Washing Machine Drum

Mold can also start growing on the washing machine drum. When the washing machine is on, water can spray outside of the drum or onto the lip of the drum along with lint or hair. If the washing machine drum doesn't fully dry out after you're done using the washing machine, mold will start to grow on it.

In order to check the washing machine drum for mold, you'll need to open up the service panel on the back of your washing machine. Use a flashlight to examine the outside of the drum for signs of mold growth.

If your washing machine smells moldy and you can't find out where it's coming from, call a mold inspector and have it professionally tested. They'll examine your entire washing machine and take samples of any discolored areas to test if it's mold. Once you've found and removed the mold, you'll be able to wash your clothes and know that they're completely clean.