How to clean and service a washing machine soap drawer & fabric conditioner tray
Here is a step by step guide of the process:
Washing Machine Soap Drawers
The Soap drawer and boxes get mucky and they need cleaned pretty regularly this video tutorial will show you how. You get the build-up of powder, fabric conditioner or softener and, combined with the nice warm atmosphere in most people’s homes and the wet or damp environment in the soap drawer it forms an almost perfect place for bacteria to grow. (which causes mould and smells)
When we talk about the soap drawer this is the bit you pull out to put the powder into. The part that this drawer slots into is known as the (soap box).
There seems to be basically two different methods for removal, a sharp tug for most of them or, in some cases like many Bosch, Neff, Siemens or Balay washing machines, a release clip. Below is a picture of the Bosch soap drawer being removed for cleaning or maintenance.
washing machine soap drawers are easily removed for cleaning
Once you have removed the drawer, you can clean it easily using hot water and a small brush, if your water has a lot of calcium in your area you may wish to bleach the areas that have scum marks on them will also need bleaching. I have had great success when a soap drawer has been soaked in hot water with some time especially with bleach it will ensure that all the bacteria gets wiped out and will help remove any build up of lime scale.
Normally at the back of the fabric conditioner section there is a removable tube that forms a siphon to which the softener is taken into the machine on the final rinse. This needs to be removed and cleaned as if it is not clear then often the siphon will not work correctly. In almost all machines these just pull off for cleaning and the tubes need to be cleaned with a small brush.
If you don’t clean this then you will get a congealed mass of conditioner or soap detergent building up which can lead to unpleasant smells and mould in the washing machine. It can also cause other issues, like the soap drawer not clearing the water properly or may cause the machine to leak from the soap drawer in extreme cases, as well as resulting in the machine not taking the conditioner into the drum on the final rinse.