Fabric softeners, in particular, are thick and difficult to rinse which means residue is often left behind in the drawer. The residue creates the perfect environment for bacteria to thrive and black mould to grow. Excess detergent can also cause washing machine drawers to turn mouldy as it can leave soap scum inside the drawer.
Sometimes, washing cycles below 40C can cause mould to grow and dirt to build up.
With this in mind, fans of cleaning expert Mrs Hinch, whose full name is Sophie Hinchliffe, have shared their simple solution for banishing black mould from washing machine drawers.
The cleaning, lifestyle and home influencer has more than 4.6 million followers on Instagram and often shares her cleaning and home hacks online.
Fans of hers have taken to social media in recent years to share their own hacks for solving common household problems.
On one such group, Facebook user Kayleigh Louise Philp posted: “I cleaned this two weeks ago and I’ve done a few wash loads since and it’s looking like this! Can anyone help or suggest why this has happened? Thank you.”
The post included a photo of a washing machine drawer covered in what appeared to be black mould.
The Facebook post was inundated with responses from Mrs Hinch fans but the most suggested response was to use white vinegar either to clean the drawer or instead of fabric conditioner.
Elizabeth Edwards commented: “Personally, I think it’s the clothes conditioner clogging it up. Try using white vinegar as a substitute. Sometimes it really does work and the drawer stays a lot cleaner. Nothing to lose. Give it a go, you will be surprised.”
Donna Gibson Robson said: “White vinegar and a toothbrush.” Tracy Salmons replied: “After each wash, take out the drawer, empty out the water and leave it upside down to dry on the draining board.
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“I agree with the post about not using softener and using white vinegar instead.”
Rosemarie West suggested: “This the reason why I don’t use fabric conditioners, I used to get that black gunge when I did and thought it can’t do the fabrics any good. Now I just use white vinegar in the conditioner drawer and never get the mess.”
Colleen Colleen posted: “I’ve read on here that [fabric] liquid is bad for the machines and powder in the drum is better. Also, white vinegar is effective as a conditioner but also stain and odour removal.”
Marie Austin wrote: “I use white vinegar in the conditioner drawer and have never had a problem with my old machine.”
Debby Brown said: “I think it is a normal thing that happens. The area gets wet and doesn’t dry so mould grows. It also happens to me.
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“Just pull the whole drawer out and give it a good wash. I will try the vinegar as well as others suggested as maybe the alkaline kills the mould.
“I had this too and sometimes it resulted in a stain on the clothes which won’t come out of whites. White vinegar in the conditioner drawer and a liquid wash in the drum stopped it thankfully.”
White vinegar can be bought from most supermarkets or online if there’s not already a bottle at the back of the cupboard.
Dri-Pak Pure White Vinegar costs £2 from Ocado, Stardrops White Vinegar Spray costs £1 from The Range and Mireco White Vinegar Lime Power costs 89p from Savers.
Other suggestions for removing black mould from washing machine drawers included using soda crystals, mould spray, Elbow Grease, dishwasher tablets and bleach.
Michelle Pressegh said: “Keep the door open after a wash. Put it on a hot wash with a dishwasher tablet, no clothes and give it a wash with soda crystals.”
Karen Ward replied: “Mould spray and put it on a hot wash with no washing in the washing machine.”
Sharon Stoddart commented: “Spray with Astonish Mould and Mildew even where the drawer goes give a good clean leave drawer and door open after each use and dry the door area keeps mould at bay.”
Valerie Floyd posted: “Take the drawer out, clean it with an old toothbrush and spray Elbow Grease on it.” Christine Howard wrote: “If you have a dishwasher, put it in for a clean. I do mine in the dishwasher.”
Maisie Caldwell said: “Take it out and soak it in bleach for an hour. Use an old toothbrush to get it clean. Place it back in and if you have a dishwasher tablet, put one in the drawer. It will leave it smelling nice.”
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