Mold in Washing Machines
Energy Efficient Front Loading Washing Machine can cause your laundry area as well as your clothes to have a mold or mildew type smell. Also, you might get dark marks on one or more of your laundry items. The odor and mark are caused by the rubber gasket that is located immediately inside the front door of the machine. The inner lining of the gasket is manufactured in such a way that water can collect at the bottom of the gasket causing the water to sit there between loads. The area inside the gasket gets no light and is damp and warm, which makes a perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew spores.
Manufacturers of these washers suggest that you always leave the door slightly ajar to allow air in. They also sell or recommend using a machine cleaning solution or small tablets that you can use in a wash cycle every two to three weeks to help clean the inside of the gasket. While doing these two things may help, they do not completely remove the mold, odor, or prevent the occasional marking of clothing.