How To Clean Washing Machine Filter Top Loader

How To Clean Washing Machine Filter Top Loader

Does your washer leave lint and dirt residues in your clothes after a wash, I will explain to you how to clean your washing machine filter top loader and how to clean your entire washer?

Well, it could be that you have not cleaned the washer filter that traps hair, coins, detergent, and fabric softener after a cycle.

Where is the Filter on Top Load Washer?

Before you get started, you must identify where the washing machine filter is on your top load washer. Now, different washing machine models will have different locations of the filter. Understand that the newer versions are self-clean and therefore lack the filter.

To find the washing machine filter, check your user manual. The manufacturer ought to indicate the location of the filter. 

Where is the Filter on a Washing Machine to Clean it?

However, if you cannot find your washer user manual, you might want to check the following:

  • Top of the washer tub
  • Top of the agitator
  • End of the drainage hose
  • Near the water pump

Well, before you learn how to clean a top loader washing machine filter, do all washers have filters?

Do Top Loading Washing Machines Have Filters to Clean?

In most cases, you will need to remove the outer cover for you to access the washer filters in the top-loading washing machine. However, not all top loader washing machines have filters.

The newer models, most of them made after the year 2001, do not have filters, and instead, they self-clean. However, you still need to learn how to clean a washing machine filter top loader

How To Clean Washing Machine Filter Top Loader

In those models that have filters, you will identify them. They are 2 crescent-shaped plastic mesh, usually under the agitator. Dirt, hair, and detergent residues may remain on the bottom of the filter.

High-efficiency top loader washing machines are mostly self-clean. They lack a removable filter even though you will need to run an empty cycle to clean the washer. 

How Do You Clean a Dirty Washing Machine Filter?

You now understand where you will find your top loader washing machine filters. Use this guide to learn how to clean filters in the top loader washing machine.

Step One: Refer to Your User Manual to Find the Washing Machine Filter

Different washing machine models have different filters. While newer machines lack a removable washing machine filter, you need to check with your user manual. If you cannot find the user manual, refer to the above-discussed areas.

Step Two: Remove the Washing Machine Filter

Ensure that your top loader washing machine filter is removable. It can be an involved task, but it should not be difficult to remove it once you locate it. Dip it in hot water and dish soap solution and leave it to soak for a few minutes.

Use a small brush to clean the filter before replacing it. Top loader washing machines with non-removable filters, you may use a brush to scrub the filter. You can also use paper towels to clean the filter in the washer.

Step Three: Use Paper Towels to Clean The Surrounding Filter Area

You already have the filter clean and ready to replace it. But just one thing, there could be residue trapped around the washer filter area. Use paper towels to wipe out all the dirt and residue before you replace the filter.

Step Four: Replace the Washing Machine Filter

Once you are convinced that your washing machine filter is clean, it is time to put it back. You will notice an immediate difference when running your cycle. There will be lesser residue and faster water flow and thus efficient rounds.

Check this video for help, this method is not for every washing machine, so be sure to read the full article.

How Often Do You Need to Clean Washing Machine Filter?

Now that you have learned how to clean washing machine filter top loader some top loader washing machines lack the washing machine filter.

Instead, you must run a clean cycle to clear the residue at least once a month. In most cases, you will find a water pump in the back of your top-loader. This requires you to remove the outer case of your top loader washing machine.

Unfortunately, if left clogged, lint and dirt trapped by the water pump could get on your clothes. Well, how do you clean the washing machine filter for a top loader?

Remove any debris caught in the filter

A lot of residue from your dirty laundry is caught up in the water filter. Once you remove the outer case of your top loader, you can access the water pump filter. You will find stuff such as coins, dirt, hair, buttons, and so on.

Clean and remove every residue from the filter before replacing it. Clean the water pump filter regularly to ensure your washing machine runs efficiently.

Clean the drainage filter

Not only do you need to clean the water pump filter but also the drainage filter. To access it, you might need to unscrew the hose from the washing machine.

You will find the drainage filter, and again, you will find all kinds of residue. Clean it before putting back in place and reattach the drainage hose.

How Do You Clean a Top-Loading Washing Machine?

Besides cleaning the washing machine filter for your top loader, you also need to wash your machine. Luckily, you only need to wash it at least twice a year, alongside the detergent and fabric softener dispensers.

However, if you live in an area with hard water, you might need to wash your top loader washing machine at least four times a year. If you own a high-efficiency top loader washing machine, you also need to clean it more often.

It is because they use only a small amount of water to complete each washing cycle. As a result, it leaves more residue than a front-loading washing machine would.

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to clean my top loader washing machine.

Empty your washer and fill the drum

To run the clean cycle on your top loader washing machine, you need to empty the tub. Remove everything from the tub and fill the drum with water. Add some chlorine bleach to the water and set your washer at the longest cycle with the hottest water.

Run a complete cycle

Run a complete washing cycle to clean out your machine. This will get rid of all the detergent and fabric softener residues completely. The chlorine bleach works to get rid of the lint that could stain your clothes after wash.

Do not forget to clean the detergent and fabric softener dispensers. These, too, could contribute to excessive lint and odor from your washer.

Use distilled white vinegar to remove bad odor.

Once the first complete wash, rinse, and spin cycle are over, you need to run another cycle. This time, use distilled white vinegar instead of chlorine bleach. However, these two products should never be used together.

Once again, run a complete cycle with the hottest water and longest cycle possible.

Once you are done, you may clean the outside parts of your washer to keep it clean.

You should also check our article on How To Disinfect Washing Machine.


Whether you have been struggling with stained clothes after a wash or you want to keep up with hygiene, you must learn how to clean a washing machine filter for a top loader.

The above steps should help you maintain a clean washer machine at all times. Always refer to your user manual to locate your top loader washing machine filter.

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