Maytag® Power Agitator washing clothes

HOW TO CLEAN A WASHING MACHINE AGITATOR

Cleaning your washer is an important part of maintaining your appliance. Soap and fabric softener can build up over time, and regular cleaning will help ensure that clean clothes come out of a clean washer. The agitator itself can be cleaned along with the rest of the tub and doesn’t require any special attention. Read on for step-by-step instructions on how to clean an agitator washing machine using a few different cleaning products.

Agitator twisting inside a washing machine tub Agitator twisting inside a washing machine tub

SHOULD YOU CLEAN YOUR WASHER’S AGITATOR?

Not necessarily. You don’t need to clean your agitator separately from the rest of the washer. When you run a cycle to clean the tub, the agitator will be cleaned along with it. If you notice dirt or grime on the agitator, wipe it down with a damp cloth and mild soap or affresh® washing machine cleaning wipes.* This is likely just product build-up and soil from laundry loads.

If there’s a removable cap on your washer’s agitator, gently pull or twist it off and hand clean the inside with a cloth or long scrub brush. If the cap presents any resistance, do not force it off. Not all agitator caps are removable. If there’s any doubt, check your owner’s manual.

CLEANING A WASHING MACHINE AGITATOR: STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS

Perform these steps every 30 days to help minimize how much detergent and soil accumulates inside your washer and its agitator. Check your washer’s owner’s manual for model-specific cleaning steps or read on for general instructions on how to clean an agitator washing machine.

SUPPLIES
  • Washing machine cleaner or liquid chlorine bleach

  • Washing machine wipes or rag with mild soap

Bleach bottle icon

STEP 1: ADD CLEANER TO THE WASHER

Remove any items from the washer tub. Add a cleaner like an affresh® washing machine cleaner tablet* to the washer tub. Do not put it in the dispensers. If you don’t have a washing machine cleaner, add 1 cup of liquid chlorine bleach to the bleach dispenser. If you have a front load washer, check your owner’s manual before putting bleach inside the tub as it is not recommended for certain models.

 

Water spraying icon

STEP 2: RUN A CLEANING CYCLE

If your washing machine has a self-cleaning cycle, run it. If not, select a normal wash cycle and add Deep Fill or another option that fills the tub with extra water. When the cycle is over, run a rinse and spin cycle to clear away any excess cleansers.

Hand wiping icon

STEP 3: WIPE DOWN AGITATOR

When the rinse and spin cycle is over, open the washer and examine the agitator. If needed, wipe down the outside of the agitator with an affresh® washing machine cleaning wipe* or damp cloth and mild soap. If your agitator appears to have a removable cap, gently pull or twist it to see if it’s removable. If possible, wipe down the inside of the agitator. Leave the washer lid open to let it dry. If the agitator cap presents any resistance, do not force it. Not all agitator caps are removable. Check your owner’s manual to be sure.

Clean laundry pair with a glass lid washer Clean laundry pair with a glass lid washer

CAN VINEGAR DAMAGE YOUR WASHING MACHINE?

Vinegar is acidic so it can corrode parts of your washer over time, particularly rubber parts. When in doubt, consult your appliance manual for details on care, cleaning and maintenance. If you’re concerned about your cleaner’s effect on the environment, check out affresh® washing machine cleaner tablet*, which are made with EPA Safer Choice certified ingredients, so you can use them with confidence.

Clean washer drum with shining stainless steel Clean washer drum with shining stainless steel

HOW DO I CLEAN MY WASHING MACHINE AGITATOR WITHOUT REMOVING IT?

Unless your washing machine’s manual has specific instructions for removing the agitator, do not try to remove it. Regularly cleaning the tub will keep the agitator clean. If you see any product or soil build-up, wipe it down with a cleaning wipe or rag with mild soap and water. If your agitator has a removable cap, also wipe down the inside until you’ve removed all soils. 

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When you buy a washing machine from Maytag, you're getting dependability, power and performance you can count on. Plus, select these models feature a Clean Washer with affresh® cycle so you can easily keep the tub thoroughly fresh.

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*affresh® brand products and the recommending brands' products are all owned and distributed by Whirlpool Corporation