Washer Leaves Residue on Clothes
It can be a big problem if your washing machine doesn’t get your clothes clean but can be equally annoying if the freshly washed come out of the machine covered in residue. Fortunately, while residue left on clothes is inconvenient, the solution is often simple. Follow the steps in this washing machine troubleshooting guide to learn more. If you need additional assistance, It Is Fixed Appliance Repair is available for same day* appointments seven days a week. We have technicians trained in washer repair and can help save laundry day so you can get back to the enjoying clean, residue-free clothes.
Possible Cause: Pocket Lint
Always check pockets before washing your clothes. A napkin, receipt, or tissue will partially dissolve when washed leaving your clothes covered with the remaining material when the wash cycle is complete. Fix: Make sure the washing machine drum is clear of debris and then rewash the clothes.
Possible Cause: Undissolved Laundry Detergent
Powdered laundry soap needs time to dissolve in water. If it doesn’t dissolve completely, grains of detergent may be left on your clothes. Always put the detergent first, when the washing machine is empty. Next, allow the washer to fill at least halfway before adding clothes. Not only will this prevent residue, but it can also prevent bleach marks on your clothes caused by concentrated laundry soap.
Note: If you still have an issue with undissolved detergent, your water may be too cold. Water that is 60°F (15.6°C) or below will not effectively dissolve powdered laundry soap. Fix: Use the hottest temperature setting allowed on the care instructions for the clothes, or switch to liquid laundry soap.
Possible Cause: Too Much Laundry Detergent
If you use too much detergent, it can leave a filmy residue on your clothes even after washing. To make sure you’re using the correct amount:
Follow machine recommendations for how much detergent to use. Soap manufacturers want you to use more product, so you have to buy refills more often. However, front loading and HE machines often need less detergent than an older, or top-loading machine. To determine how much detergent you need, refer to the recommendations on your washing machine rather than following the instructions on the detergent bottle.
When you determine how much detergent is needed per load, mark the fill line on the detergent cup with a permanent marker, so you always know the correct amount.
Possible Cause: Dirty Washer
It’s counterintuitive, but washing machines need to be cleaned too. Clogs, mildew, and dirt buildup can leave residue on your clothes. Fix: Refer to our Washing Machine Maintenance Guide for washing machine cleaning tips.
Possible Cause: Overloaded Washing Cycle
While it is good practice to wait until you have a full load to run your washing machine, if you fill it too full your clothes will not be able to get clean. The dirt is removed from your clothes as the machine spins or agitates. If the drum is too full, the clothes won’t be able to move freely and may not get clean. Fix: Follow load recommendations for your specific washing machine to determine the ideal load size.
Possible Cause: Unsorted Clothes
When you wash clothes, it is important to sort by color and type. Cloth with loose, dense fibers like towels “shed” when washed. If you wash regular clothes with towels, you may end up with a load of laundry covered in lint.
If you wash light clothes with dark clothes, dyes from the darker clothing may tint the lighter pieces. Also, the natural breakdown of material fibers when clothes are washing will result in light-colored fiber being deposited on dark clothes, leaving a visible, lint-like residue that is hard to remove.
Fix: Sort clothes by color and material. Heavy materials items like jeans or towels should not be washing with more delicate clothing and materials.
Pro Tip: Whites do not need to be separated from light-colored clothing unless you are using bleach in the wash.
Possible Cause: Hard Water
Hard water is not actually “hard.” It simply refers to water with a high mineral content. Unfortunately, hard water does not clean as effectively as demineralized water. Hard water can cause your laundry detergent to clump, form curds, and leave a powdery residue on your clothes. Fix: Mechanical water softeners can soften the water at the tap, or you can purchase water conditioners to add to the water with every wash.
Possible Cause: Clogged or Faulty Water Pump
If you’ve ever wondered where all the missing socks go when you wash them, the answer is that they may have been sucked into the machinery of your washing machine. Small articles of clothing, dirt, and clothing fiber can clog the water pump on your washing machine. A clogged water pump may cause reduced water flow, and may even prevent your washing machine from draining. The result is clothes that cannot be adequately rinsed.
Leaks, sluggish draining, or a washing machine that won’t drain at all are all signs of a clogged or faulty water pump. Fix: Unplug your washing machine from the power. Remove the shell of the machine following the instructions in your owner’s manual. Locate the water pump and drain any remaining water into a bucket. If you find a clog, remove the material and wash the intake and outlet valves of the pump.
If you suspect the pump may be faulty, it will need to be replaced. Contact It Is Fixed Appliance Repair for same day washer repair services. We are on call seven days a week to assist you, and we can provide factory original parts on most brands. Call It Is Fixed Today.