Regular maintenance of your washing machine can prevent operating problems. Sometimes you may need to call a professional, but there are some problems that can be avoided or fixed easily. This includes problems that detergent build-up may cause to the washing machine over time. Washing machines need to be cleaned of soap deposits from detergents, and other lingering dirt in the tub.

Regular maintenance can prevent soapy deposits from building up, a problem that can make even clean laundry smell bad after the wash.

The lid and door of the washer should be cleaned on a regular basis. Detergent build-up can prevent the washer from running, and may cause the lid switch to be faulty. Some of the clothes in the wash may shed lint, in which case the tub of the washer should be checked for lint after removing the laundry, and the tub should be wiped clean.If you have soap deposits, you can clean them out by rinsing with one pound of water softener or one gallon of white vinegar. Pour into the washer tub, fill the tub with water and run a complete wash cycle. For very stubborn deposits, you can wash the inside of the tub with a solution made of household ammonia and mild detergent. The tub should be rinsed with water, and then rinsed again with liquid bleach. It's important to rinse the ammonia solution before using bleach, because the combination of the two can cause a dangerous gas to form. Finally, run the washing machine again with water to make sure all remnants of cleaning agents are removed before doing another load of laundry.