Is black mould in washing machine dangerous?

Is black mould in washing machine dangerous? Here is the truth

If you have recently discovered black mould in your washing machine, you might probably be wondering whether the mold is dangerous to your health.

And you’re not alone: Many homeowners keep asking us this question, especially if they have a history of respiratory issues or allergies.

With that in mind, we will take a deeper look into black mold in washers in this article– of course, starting with whether it’s dangerous or not, what causes and how to remove it.

Let’s dive straight into the answer to that burning question you have been having “Is black mould in washing machine dangerous?”

Is black mould in washing machine dangerous?

Well, unlike other moulds that you might come across in your house, black mould that forms on washing machines is generally not dangerous.

However, we have heard a few cases of mold from washing machines triggering allergic symptoms such as sneezing and a runny nose.

This is especially true if you already have an underlying respiratory condition such as asthma.

Also, if your skin is highly sensitive, you are likely to have some skin rash if you wear clothes washed inside a moldy washer.


Simply because the mould spores are likely to attach themselves to your clothes during a wash cycle.

In spite of this, not even these few cases (they are not very common) are a cause of concern since the said allergic reactions are typically themselves not that common (and yes, they are not lethal).

But why is it that black mould is growing inside your washer?

And is there a way you can remove it as well as prevent the mould from re-growing in the future?

Now, the answer to both questions is yes as I am about to show you below…


Why does black mould grow in washing machines?

You might know this: Washing machines tend to create the perfect environment for mould growth mainly due to the moisture that is left inside the washer after a wash cycle has finished.

Other than moisture, another common cause for mold formation is residues from detergents (and other laundry additives- we often use additives like Borax, Baking Soda, Vinegar, Essential Oils and more, depending on our specific laundry needs).

Problem is, these residuals oftentimes accrue in hard-to-reach spots within your washer (a favorite spot for is around the rubber seal), thereby paving way for eventual mould growth.

So yes, you’re likely to keep seeing that black-ish stuff (over time) as long as you’re using your washing machine which brings me to an important question: How do you get rid of mould on washing machine…


How to get rid of mold in top loading washing machine and front load washers

Now, there are no model-specific instructions when it comes to removing mold from washers.

So here are the general steps (based on the product that work- vinegar is one- you should follow when removing  mould from your washer)…


How to clean mold from washing machine with vinegar

Before we proceed, make sure that your washer is completely empty.

Next, remove the detergent box and clean it using warm water – you can use a soft toothbrush to scrub out any detergent residue.

Next, measure a quart of distilled white vinegar and pour it into the washer’s drum.

Proceed to run the hottest wash cycle the washer has.

Pro tip: If all the mould does not come off, you can repeat the steps as necessary.


How to clean mould from washing machine without vinegar

The good thing is that vinegar is not the only good cleaning agent when it comes to removing mould- Other effective mold removal products you can also use include:

What is more important to keep in mind is that regardless of the cleaner that you opt to use, the cleaning procedure is effectively the same as that of using vinegar.

Something else: As you try to achieve a better clean, do not mix any two or more cleaning agents- mixing them might result in the formation of lethal gases such as Chlorine.

So only use one cleaning agent and repeat the steps until your washer is clean to your liking.

Alternatively, run the first cycle with one cleaning agent and the second wash cycle with another cleaning agent.


How do you get mould off washing machine rubber?

Start by dipping a rough towel (or an old toothbrush) into distilled white vinegar and then scrub off the mould.

Repeat as necessary – till the rubber seal is fully clean.

You can then use a soft dry cloth to wipe the rubber seal dry.

However, if you do not have white vinegar , you can just spray a good mold/mildew remover on the mold and let it sit for around 30 minutes.

Once the 30 minutes are over, you can wipe off the mold.

For a more comprehensive guide on how to remove mould from your washer’s rubber seal, read our previous article: How to remove black mould in washing machine rubber seal.

If you remember well,  I earlier on mentioned that you can easily prevent the mould from growing again in your washing machine.

Well, here’s what you need to do…


How to prevent mould from growing in washing machine

Now that you have successfully removed the mould, you surely want a way to prevent it from growing back.

The good news is that there are several easy steps you can perform to prevent mould from growing inside your washer again.

Overall, since mold growth is majorly promoted by humid or damp environments, the key step to preventing its growth is to keep your washing machine clean and dry.

To achieve that, always make sure that you are leaving the washer’s lid/door open after each use- that allows it to air out hence keeping moisture from forming inside your washer.

Other than that, keep the machine clean by doing the following:

  • Run the Machine Clean cycle once a month (or after every 30 wash loads.
  • Stick to the manufacturer-recommended detergent…. To know which detergent your washer manufacturer recommends you use, refer to the user manual that came with your unit.


Is black mould in washing machine dangerous – recap

While there is still no evidence to suggest that black mould in washing machines is dangerous to humans, it can lead to your washing machine smelling terrible.

Subsequently, it is still important for you to take mold growth in washers seriously and take the necessary steps to prevent this.

So implement some of the steps I have recommended above including keeping your washing machine clean and dry to avoid the mould problem.


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