Maintaining a well-functioning washing machine is crucial for efficient laundry care. While most of you are familiar with regular cleaning routines for the machine’s interior and exterior, many overlook an essential component that plays a significant role in its performance—the washing machine filter.

So, are you supposed to clean washing machine filter? The washing machine filter acts as a barrier, preventing lint, debris, and foreign objects from clogging the drainage system and potentially damaging the machine.

Over time, this filter can accumulate dirt and residues, reducing efficiency and even malfunctioning. Consequently, it becomes necessary to clean the washing machine filter periodically.

In this article, we will delve into the importance of cleaning the washing machine filter, its impact on machine longevity, and the recommended cleaning frequency.

Let’s get started!

Are You Supposed to Clean Washing Machine Filter

Are You Supposed to Clean Washing Machine Filter?

Everyone should clean their washing machine filter at least once every three to four months. If you do not clean the filter, all the items in it can build up and clog it.

A clogged filter can lead to your washing machine not cleaning your clothes effectively, and it may lead to the development of mold and mildew.

How to Clean a Washing Machine Filter

If yours is one of the 85% of US households that own a washing machine, then you need to know how to properly maintain it so that it lasts longer.

One often-overlooked part of a washing machine is its filter because most people are unaware that their washer has it, let alone remember to clean it.

The filter’s purpose is to catch fluff, hair, tissues, coins, and other items that, if not caught, can damage your washer.

If your washing machine is one of the new high-efficiency ones, it may not have this filter. Many modern washing machines are self-cleaning and have filters in the pumps.

However, if your washing machine does have a filter, it is best to clean it at least once every three to four months. Cleaning prevents the filter from clogging your machine or developing mold and mildew.

Nonetheless, if your washing machine has a disposable filter, all you need to do is replace it with a new one and throw away the old one. 

Before cleaning the washing machine filter, remember to unplug the washer from its power source. You want to do this to avoid getting shocked by electricity.

Read more: What To Wash Washing Machine With?

Find the filter on the washer

Find the filter on the washer 

Find the owner’s manual for your washing machine and determine where the filter is located and how to maintain it.

However, if you do not have the manual to help you locate the filter on your washing machine, try looking in the following locations:

  • At the bottom right corner of the washer’s front, concealed behind a little door.
  • Along the drum’s top rim.
  • Under the center agitator’s cover.
  • On the machine’s back, at the drainage hose’s end.

Remove the cover once you find the filter. A short drain hose and the filter’s cap will probably be visible when you remove the cover. Take out the cap to access the filter and remove it from the washing machine.

Wipe and soak the filter

After carefully removing the filter from the washing machine, you should wipe away any remaining dirt with a damp cloth.

Once you are done with the wiping, you should soak the filter in hot water with a bit of dish soap or liquid laundry detergent. Let the filter soak for at least ten minutes. 

Scrub and put the filter back in the washer

Once the filter is soaked, you should brush it with soft bristles like an old toothbrush and scrub away any remaining buildup from the filter. Then, put it back in its place in the washing machine and ensure that it is properly placed.

Unlike with a dryer’s filter, you will not have to wait for the washer’s filter to dry out, as it will get wet anyways.

Run a wash cycle

After you place the filter back in the washing machine, you should run a short wash cycle to ensure that the filter is properly placed in the washer. 

If you notice any leaks during the wash cycle, remove the filter and reinsert it into the washing machine again. 

Also read: Do Washing Machines Come With A Drain Hose?


Are you supposed to clean washing machine filter? As you’ve already seen, the answer is yes, especially if you want your clothes to be clean. 

A clogged filter will not allow your washing machine to clean laundry effectively. Thus, ensure that you clean the filter at least once every three to four months.