Many owner's manuals suggest occasionally sanitizing the interior of your washer to help prevent the spread of illness among family members. This is particularly important whenever children are suffering from communicable diseases, or when there has been exposure to hepatitis, herpes, etc.
This sanitizing procedure is also good for periodic freshening and deodorizing of the washer. For the best effectiveness, sanitize the washer immediately prior to washing a load of clothes.
To improve the quality of washing with non-phosphate detergents, pretreat stains and grease spots before loading clothes into the machine, use soft water, and use the hottest water permitted for the fabric. Be sure to use enough detergent, and dissolve non-phosphate detergents in water before adding to a load of clothes. Never pour the detergent directly on any clothing.
The so-called all-purpose detergents wash dirt out of clothing, and can be used for soaking, pre-washes, as well as the actual washing. Be sure to read instructions that come with the package before using any detergent.
In soft water, any detergent or soap may be used.
Soft water generally means that a lesser amount of cleaner is required to wash clothes completely. In hard water, soap forms ascum. For this reason, use detergents if your water tests hard. Soap should only be used if you also add a water conditioner such as Calgon or Spring Rain to the wash water.
At the end of the cycle, be sure to thoroughly wipe out the interior of the tub and the enamel exterior surfaces with a clean, damp cloth.
Then as a safety step, be sure that all switches are off. (You can also lengthen the life of the hoses and valves by shutting off the water at the faucets.)
All of the above tips are for informational purposes only. For your safety, we strongly encourage any washer repairs to be performed only by a certified technician.