Tips for Using Bleach in a Washing Machine

Wondering how to use bleach for your laundry in the washing machine? You’re in the right spot. Keep reading to find out how.

Using the washing machine is one thing, but using bleach for your clothes in it takes things up a notch.

If you have many white clothes, bleaching them every so often is essential to keep them brilliantly white.

Remember, putting bleach in your washing machine at the wrong time or forgetting to dilute it can result in bleach stains ruining your clothes permanently.

That’s why it’s crucial to know exactly how to use bleach for your laundry in the washing machine.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through two simple ways to use bleach in your washing machine to keep your clothes bright, white, and stain-free.


Tips for Using Bleach in a Washing Machine


There are essentially two main ways to use bleach for your clothes in a washing machine:


  1. Bleaching your clothes in the washing machine
  2. Sanitizing your washing machine with bleach


Method 1: Bleaching Your Clothes in the Washing Machine


1. Begin by setting your washer to the highest heat setting


Higher temperatures help activate the bleach for better results. Next, select the “hot cycle” option or adjust the appliance’s dial to the maximum temperature.

Check the label on each garment before placing them in the washer. For items that can’t tolerate hot water, opt for a warm wash setting instead.


2. Add a capful of laundry detergent to the washer


This helps lift dirt from clothes and tackles stains effectively. If you don’t have laundry detergent, regular washing powders will do the job.

If your washer has a dispenser, pour the detergent into it. Without a dispenser, pour the detergent directly into the washer’s barrel.

For white clothes, it’s recommended to use detergents designed for whites as they help enhance their brightness.


3. If you have a front-loader washing machine, simply pour the bleach into the designated dispenser


Open the bleach dispenser slot at the front of the washer and add a capful of bleach.

The machine will release it into the water automatically as it fills up, preventing any direct exposure of laundry items to undiluted bleach.

But if you’re using a top-loader without a bleach dispenser, dilute the bleach in a liter of water and pour it directly into the washer’s barrel.


4. For top-loader washers, sprinkle the bleach directly into the water


Start the washer by hitting the start button or turning the dial and wait for the water to fill up the barrel. Once filled, open the lid and add a capful of bleach.

This safeguards your laundry from bleach stains. Typically, it takes about five minutes for the washing machine to fill up.

If your machine has a bleach compartment, pour the bleach in there before starting the cycle.


5. Choose the regular wash setting on the washing machine


Select the regular wash cycle to allow the bleach sufficient time to penetrate every fiber of the clothing. If you’re washing delicate garments, opt for the delicate cycle instead.


6. Dry the laundry


Once the wash cycle is done, either use a dryer or hang the laundry on a washing line. Be cautious to avoid dripping on surfaces like clothes, carpets, or rugs, as the bleach residue in wet laundry can stain other fabrics.


Method 2: Sanitizing Your Washing Machine with Bleach


1. Start by setting the washer to a hot, long wash


Press the hot wash button and then choose the long wash option. The heat from the hot wash activates the bleach, facilitating a thorough cleaning of the washer. Remember not to load any garments at this stage.


2. Pour 946 ml of bleach into the washer


In addition to brightening white clothes, bleach plays a key role in sanitizing the washer and getting rid of odors. We suggest using laundry bleach designed for washing machines rather than regular cleaning bleach.

This is because laundry bleach is generally gentler on clothes, unlike the cleaning bleach version that can harm the fibers in fabrics.


3. Allow the bleach to soak for an hour


Pause the wash cycle for a bit, giving the bleach an hour to soak. Wait a minute to let the washing machine fill up with water.

Once filled, lift the washer’s lid or hit pause to temporarily stop the cycle. Now, let the bleach solution work its magic, sanitizing and cleansing the barrel.

For top-loader washing machines, open the lid to let fumes escape. If you have a front-loader washer, no need to do this; the fumes will clear once the cycle is complete.


4. Restart the washer to complete the cycle


Press the start button on the washer to resume the cycle. This step expels water from the barrel, draining it through the pipes and enabling the bleach to clean the internal plumbing of the appliance.

Run a second rinse cycle to ensure any remaining bleach in the barrel and pipes is thoroughly cleared. Make this a monthly routine to keep your washing machine in excellent condition and extend its lifespan.


Last Words


Regular bleaching keeps clothes, especially whites, looking vibrant and appealing. But using bleach in a washing machine requires some know-how to prevent staining or harming your cherished whites.

This post thoroughly covers the two primary methods of bleaching clothes in a washing machine. Also, ensure you have an efficient washing machine; older or faulty ones may not deliver the quality wash you get from newer models.

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