Skip to Content

Why Is There Black Mold in Washing Machine? (Answered)

Washing machine is a home appliance that’s used every day to keep our clothes fresh and clean. But what to do if one day this cleaning machine starts showing black molds in its drum, door seal, or soap dispenser? 

That’s really alarming since the molds can affect your clothes while gradually ruining the washer. You may wonder how a device made for cleaning purposes got black mold. Are these harmful? How to get rid of the molds from a washing machine?

If you’re looking for these answers, you can read and find them here.

Reasons of black mold in the washing machine:

The main reason for black molds in the washing machine is moisture. Trapped moisture inside can make place for molds. Besides, soap residue and laundry dirt are other reasons. The washing machine, when not properly cleaned and dried for a long time, can cause black mold too. 

Black molds are often found in the washer. Sometimes inside the door seal, sometimes in the corners of the washer drum. They might seem harmless but can cause health problems if you don’t get rid of them soon.

However, people often get surprised when they find mold build up in a washing machine. Because it’s a washing machine and more or less gets in contact with water and cleaning agents. 

So it seems like there is no reason that can provoke the growth of black molds in the washing machine, but actually, there are a few things responsible for black molds in the washing machine. Let’s know the reasons:


Washing machines have to deal with moisture. It works with water and thus naturally remains wet through and after you’re done washing dirty laundry. After the work, if the door of the washer isn’t kept open for a while and is closed until the next time, the inside areas remain wet.

This moist area is like a heaven for molds as they thrive in wet and dark areas. So if you’re not letting the washing machine dry every day that can be a reason why black molds are living there.

Trapped steam: 

Hot cycles are most people’s favorite thing to run in a washing machine. But when you don’t let the steam of the hot water out from the machine it can cause molds inside. 

Molds love dark warm places and when the steamy air from your last warm cycle gets trapped inside the washing machine, it gives a golden chance to the molds to make the machine their home. Thus the black molds grow in the washing machine. 

Soap Residue: 

Though soap is a cleaning agent it can be a reason for the black molds in your washing machine. The residue of soap remains even after you’ve drained the water.

The soap residue starts to build up every day if you don’t clean the machine properly after every wash. The soap and soap lather stuck in the drum, soap dispenser or door’s seal creates a warm wet environment for the molds to grow. 


The dirt left from the washed clothes can cause black molds. Washing machine needs deep cleaning after a certain time. If not done, the dirt and grease increase gradually and makes room for molds to grow in many parts of the washing machine. 

Is black mold in the washing machine dangerous?

We all have dealt with mold problems at least once in our life. They grow in dark, moist places. Though molds look lifeless but can put our lives at risk.

Black molds are no different. They are uglier and more harmful. But if the black molds are growing in the washer, will they be able to harm? Let’s see if the mold in different parts of a washing machine can be dangerous. 

Mold in washing machine drum: 

Molds in the washing machine drum are an alarming situation. If it contains mold, then while washing your clothes in the drum the molds and their spores can get transferred to the laundry. 

Thus people who will get in touch with those clothes can face allergic reactions, itching, sneezing even breathing difficulty due to mold. 

Mold in washing machine detergent dispenser or drawer: 

Mold in the detergent compartment is scary. If your soap which is there to keep the laundry clean is mold affected that can be risky for you too. Spores of the molds get mixed with soap and contaminate clothes or laundry. 

Which can later cause health problems for the users.

Mold in washing machine door seal: 

Molds in the door area or door seal are dangerous as they can affect you every time you touch that door. 

Also while pulling out the clothes from the washer, spores can get transferred into the laundry. And if someone uses those, they can get sick. 

How to properly clean it?

If a cleaning machine gets uncleaned that’s a serious issue to deal with. Well, we’re talking about mold build-up in washing machines. We mostly experience black molds in our washers and it can happen due to many reasons. 

Moisture, dirt, and soap resources are few to blame. However, they can’t be left like that inside the washing machine and need to be cleaned as soon as possible.

If you too have discovered black mold in your washing machine but don’t know how to clean it properly, here are some tips you can follow: 

Empty the machine: 

Before you jump into work, make sure there are no clothes inside the machine. Remove the lid if it’s not attached. Also, empty the soap dispenser. 

Run clean cycles: 

The first step that you can take to get rid of molds is to run a freshwater cycle inside the washer. You can use warm steamy water too for a quick result. Hot water is very effective to clean stuck dirt and molds. 

Add white vinegar: 

White vinegar is a natural mold remover. It’s a strong cleaner too. If you’ve filled the tub to the minimum water level, pour a cup of white vinegar into it and run the hot cycle again in the normal mode. 

Clean the affected areas: 

Make a solution of water and white vinegar for cleaning the other parts that are moldy. Take a clean piece of a soft cloth and wipe the drum sides, door, and sealing areas. You can use bleach too instead of vinegar.

To clean the door seal, remove the seal if possible and soak it in the vinegar solution. Or the seal area can be cleaned using a small brush. 

Clean the soap dispenser: 

Using a soft baby toothbrush or net cloth clean the soap dispenser. Use warm water to melt old soap residue. Rub the area well. 

Wipe with clean water: 

Wipe all the parts again using clean water. Make sure there is no cleaning agent residue left anywhere. Then run a clean cycle again with fresh water.  

Let it dry: 

Drying is very important after you’ve deep cleaned the machine. So after cleaning the washer and its parts, take all the moisture using another dry cloth or possibly a towel. 

Then keep the washing machine open for some time. Let the air pass and dry it properly. 

Solutions of black mold in the washing machine:

Black molds are scary no wonder but they can be avoided too. If you don’t want to deal with a black mold-affected washing machine, then you need to follow some tips regularly. So that you can prevent mold outgrow in your washing machine. 

Clean your washing machine after every use: 

It’s important to clean your machine after every use. Though many people don’t realize it, soap and dirt from the clothes are a reason why black molds grow in the washer. So run a clean cycle after the laundry is done to keep the machine clean. 

Let the machine dry: 

If you clean the machine well but don’t let it dry, molds can still grow there. So after using the washing machine don’t immediately close the lid. Keep it open to dry or use a towel to pat dry the washer. 

Don’t leave dirty laundry inside: 

When the bulk of dirty laundry is kept inside the washing machine for days, it can let the mold grow. So avoid storing dirty clothes or muddy shoes inside the washer to prevent mold. 

Deep clean regularly: 

Deep cleaning can make a washing machine neat and fresh. It also cleans out all the dirt, mold, or soap residue. So using strong cleaners deep clean the machine once in a while. 

Final thoughts

The washing machine can get affected by black molds due to many reasons. Trapped moisture and air mainly let black molds grow in a washer. Also, dirt and soap residue that’s not cleaned often can lead to mold buildup. Lack of deep cleaning too causes black mold in the washing machine.