In this video, This Old House host Kevin O'Connor learns how to maintain clothes washers and dryers with a few easy tips and tricks.
- Replace rubber washing machine hoses with braided stainless steel hoses. Install new hoses every five years.
- Overloading the washer with too many clothes will put undue strain on the washer and its motor, prematurely wearing out parts.
- Before loading the washer, remove all objects from pockets to prevent them from jamming the machine.
- Front-loading washers use less water than top loaders, and do a better job of spinning out excess water, which reduces drying time.
- Note that you must use only HE (high-efficiency) detergent in front-loading machines.
- To dampen vibration during the spin cycle, set the washing machine on thick rubber vibration pads.
- To keep your clothes dryer operating at peak efficiency, clean the lint filter every single time you dry a load.
- If the dryer is connected to a flexible vinyl vent, replace it immediately. Vinyl vents are no longer code compliant.
- Flexible aluminum-foil dryer vents are lined with corrugations that collect dust and lint.
- Rigid metal vent pipes are preferred because they're straight and smooth, so there's less chance of lint becoming stuck.
- Clean the dryer's vent pipe at least once a year to remove all lint buildup.
- Mobile apps are available for diagnosing and trouble-shooting washer and dryer problems.