The death of an appliance is horrible. The gutting feeling you get when an expensive white good gives up the ghost is close to that of a pet dying. For me it’s mostly because of the expense it leaves you with. You just can’t survive without a washing machine and when they break you have to fork out about £300 to get anything remotely decent or wait until a big retailer have a big sale. Sods law says the washing machine will break just after a big sale and about 3 months before the next one is due!
Now my washing machine lived in the garage for a bit but it became a case of out of sight out of mind. We moved it into the kitchen which was a job and a half and we have recently switched to cloth nappies so it gets used about 2 or 3 times more a week than it was before. It is now that it has chosen to play up. One nappy, that happens to be my favourite, came out of the wash with what looked like mildew stains on. I racked mine and every cloth bum mum I know brains to find out how and why this had happened to no avail. Someone mentioned oil from the drum so I went and had a look and found some nasty looking black splodges inside the door seal and lumps of gunk near the drainage hole.
It turns out that if you never wash above 40 degrees then you get a build up of detergent and grease in the drawer, pipes and seal which can eventually lead to black mould. Running a maintenance wash once a month that is at least 60 degrees is advised but it doesn’t appear to be public knowledge. We get bombarded with adverts telling us to save energy and wash at 30 but we are causing ourselves more harm than good.
I now have a few choices; buy a new seal and hope that’s the only place with a problem, buy a new washing machine or get a professional to take a look. I think the 3rd one is the most sensible. I won’t be splurging on a new machine and resenting spending that sort of money on something that isn’t a luxury – I can’t play with it, eat it or use it for anything other than washing stuff! It also means that we don’t mask a bigger problem and end up paying and attempting to fit a new seal and then 3 months down the line buying a new machine as well because it’s well and truly buggered.