Samsung Self-Clean Washer – Does It Really Work Well? – DIY Appliance Repairs, Home Repair Tips and Tricks (2023)

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Have you ever gone to wash out the drum in your Samsung washing machine and noticed a blinking light indicating it’s time to use your machine’s Self Clean feature?

Samsung washing machines have a feature that allows you to easily clean the drums inside of the machine without the use of chemicals, and without having to contact a technician for support.

The use of the Self Clean feature is great because it allows little effort to ensure that the machine that cleans your clothes is clean itself, without the risk of leftover chemicals and get rid of bad odours.

If you need to use the Self Clean feature of your washing machine, or if you just want to incorporate self-cleaning into your regular machine maintenance, then read on for some instructions on how to accomplish that goal.

Why Use Self Clean?

Why would you choose to use Samsung’s featured Self Clean cycles on your washing machine instead of cleaning it yourself in the ways that you have done before or ways that washing machines have been cleaned traditionally?

While Samsung’s washing machines don’t necessarily make it easier to access everything in the drum, they do offer a feature so that you don’t have to reach inside the machine to clean it.

The Self Clean feature also allows you to avoid the use of spray vinegar and other cleaning chemicals, which go against Samsung’s manufacturer recommendations.

Finally, the Self Clean feature allows you to avoid handling wastewater.

And if you’re the type of person who prefers to manually clean their machine, even regular maintenance and manual cleaning can’t ensure the drum is fully cleaned.

(Video) Samsung Self Clean Front Load Washer Washing Machine Cleaning Mode

Samsung’s Self Clean feature is designed for the machine, is water efficient, and is made to use minimal water.

Plus, Self Clean guarantees that your Samsung washing machine will be as clean as possible per the company’s recommendations.

This helps you stay in line with Samsung’s warranty policy should you ever need maintenance performed on your unit for any other reason.

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How to Use Self Clean

Self Clean instructions

To use the Self Clean feature on your Samsung washing machine, you should perform the following actions:

  1. Make sure the machine is plugged in
  2. Make sure the machine is empty
  3. Press Power
  4. Press Self Clean
  5. Press Start
  6. Wait one hour until the cycle ends before running a load of laundry (or four hours if you have a front-load machine)

Self Clean instructions (with bleach)

If your machine has an odor or visible mold or mildew, you should run the Self Clean cycle with liquid chlorine bleach loaded into the detergent container to the max line (not the bleach container) and wait until the Self Clean cycle ends before checking that the problem has been fixed. Follow these easy steps:

  1. Make sure the machine is plugged in
  2. Make sure the machine is empty
  3. Press Power
  4. Pour liquid bleach into the detergent container in the washing machine to the max fill line
  5. Press Self Clean
  6. Press Start
  7. Wait one hour until the cycle ends (or four hours if you have a front-load machine)
  8. Wipe down the washing machine tub
  9. Run a rinse and spin cycle
  10. Open the lid and detergent container and allow the unit to air dry
  11. Clean the pump filter (front load models only)
  12. Contact support if your machine is still not operating at maximum capacity

How Often Should You Use Self Clean?

If you own a Samsung washing machine, you might already have regular maintenance and cleaning habits to ensure your machine is always in top-notch condition.

Still, the factory-designed Self Clean feature is something you can add to your routine in order to be sure your machine is as clean as possible per the manufacturer recommendations.

If you don’t already have a cleaning and maintenance schedule for your machine, then the Self Clean feature is designed just for you.

(Video) Samsung Laundry Self Clean

With minimal effort, you can ensure the washing machine drum and other interior components are sparkling clean at all times. This also helps to prolong the life of your unit.

So, how often should you use the Self Clean cycle on your Samsung washing machine? Samsung recommends that you should use the Self Clean feature on a regular monthly schedule.

Of course, that’s for individuals who use their machines every other day or so. If you use your machine daily or several times per day, then you should be using Self Clean after a specified number of loads.

Top Load vs. Front Load Machines

For a top load model, where the lid to the machine is located at the top, you should use the Self Clean cycle every twenty loads.

Samsung Self-Clean Washer – Does It Really Work Well? – DIY Appliance Repairs, Home Repair Tips and Tricks (1)

If you do two loads of laundry each weekday, that would amount to approximately one time every two weeks.

For a front-load machine that has a door that opens toward the user, rather than on top of the machine, you should use the Self Clean cycle every forty loads.

If you do two loads of laundry every weekday, that would be approximately once a month.

Can I Just Use Vinegar?

Although vinegar is a popular option for DIYers who want to clean their washing machines without the use of a Self Clean cycle (or in addition to a self-clean cycle), this isn’t recommended.

Samsung’s manufacturer guide recommends that you use either the official Self Clean cycle or liquid chlorine bleach to avoid damage to the machine and its components.

What Does It Mean When the Self Clean Light is Blinking?

Have you ever noticed that the light for Self Clean on your Samsung washing machine has turned on or is blinking at you?

(Video) The New Washer that has a Self Clean Cycle - Remove 99% of bacteria Eliminating Drum Odors & Smells!

The Samsung washing machines have a built-in feature that indicates when it is time to run the Self Clean cycle.

The notification light feature was programmed with consumers in mind.

The blinking light helps tell you when it is time to clean the washing machine so that you don’t have to remember when it is time to clean it, and so that you can avoid tracking each load.

When the Self Clean light is blinking, it indicates that the pre-installed program wants you to run the Self Clean feature.

The light activates once the washing machine has run twenty loads, even if it is a front-load model where it only needs the Self Clean cycle every forty loads.

If you don’t run the Self Clean cycle, the washing machine will stop blinking the light after five loads have been run and will blink at you again after another twenty more loads have been run.

Although the washing machine allows you to ignore the Self Clean notification light to some degree, it’s important to note when the machine needs maintenance.

If you ignore the light too long, greywater can build up debris on your washing machine drum and other components, leading to a cleaning that might require a professional technician to complete.

What Should I Do If Self Clean Isn’t working?

Keeping your Samsung washing machine as clean as possible is important in order to prevent mold, mildew, and odors from accumulating inside the machine.

It’s also important to ensure that the machine is able to perform its functions at its maximum capacity.

(Video) Samsung Self Clean does the work for you

How do I know Self Clean is defective (doesn’t really work)?

If your washing machine produces a noticeable odor, it might be time to run the Self Clean cycle.

But if you run Self Clean and the odor remains, it might indicate that the feature is not operating at the manufacturer’s standards.

Similarly, if you find that your washing machine isn’t washing clothes properly, you should try to run a Self Clean cycle.

But if you run the Self Clean cycle and you find that your clothes are still not being properly cleaned, then it might mean the Self Clean feature isn’t operating at 100%.

First, go through these steps to troubleshoot:

  1. Run a standard Self Clean cycle
  2. Run a rinse and spin cycle
  3. Try washing a light load of laundry
  4. Run a Self Clean cycle with bleach
  5. Run a rinse and spin cycle
  6. Try washing a light load of laundry

After performing those steps, check to see if the problem is solved. If you’ve already run through those common solutions and your washing machine’s Self Clean feature still appears to be defective, it might be time to contact support.

Samsung support

Samsung offers online support through a chat feature 24 hours a day, seven days per week.

If you think your machine is in need of repair because the Self Clean feature is defective, you can choose to contact one of Samsung’s preferred vendors using their online platform.

You might also choose to contact a technician independently, but Samsung does not recommend that option. You can contact Samsung support through their website, wherein you can message an agent directly or else skip that step and schedule a technician visit to your home. If you choose to take your machine directly to a service center, you also have the option of driving the machine to a location of your choice.


Do I add anything to Samsung self clean washer? ›

You don't need to add any cleaner when running self clean. However, we do recommend using bleach if you already have an existing mold smell (see our guide for details).

Can I add vinegar to self clean Samsung washer? ›

Empty the washing machine, and then pour four cups of white vinegar into the tub. Run the longest and hottest wash cycle with no detergent. Once the cycle is complete, clean the inside of the washer with a sponge. Then, run the washing machine one more time with water and no detergent.

How does self clean work Samsung? ›

The Self Clean cycle heats up the inside of your oven to a very high temperature which will burn away or dissolve food residue. It's the best way to clean the oven's interior, if you don't want to use the regular soap and water method.

What do you put in washing machine on self clean mode? ›

When you run your washer's self-cleaning mode, don't leave it to its own devices. Add one cup of bleach to the detergent cup before you start the cycle. This is my number one tip for getting rid of nasty smells. It works every time.

How long does self clean last on Samsung washer? ›

Front loading Samsung washers have a 4 hour Self Clean cycle while the cycle for top-loading machines lasts 1 hour.

How often should you self clean Samsung washer? ›

For a front-load machine that has a door that opens toward the user, rather than on top of the machine, you should use the Self Clean cycle every forty loads. If you do two loads of laundry every weekday, that would be approximately once a month.

Can I use baking soda in my Samsung washer? ›

Baking soda acts as a natural brightener and deodorizer. If you have particularly smelly clothes, using a full cup of baking soda will not harm your washer. You'll get better results if you allow the clothes to soak in the baking soda and water for at least 30 minutes before completing the wash cycle.

What can I clean my washing machine with if I don't have vinegar? ›

Hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and citric acid are all excellent substitutes for vinegar, all of which have specific characteristics that mercilessly tackle dirt, mold, mildew, bacteria, and limescale without harming the environment.

Is it good to use the self-cleaning feature? ›

Is It Safe To Self Clean an Oven? The answer is no and here are a few of the dangers associated with using the self-cleaning feature of your oven. Carbon monoxide is released as the oven dirt and grease are incinerated. The more dirt and grease at the start of the cycle the more CO is released.

What does the self clean setting do? ›

Self-cleaning ovens use high heat to help burn any residue or soil left behind in the oven and turn them into ashes, while steam-cleaning ovens use water to soften stuck on food particles. High heat self-cleaning cycles are typically longer than steam-clean cycles, and require a locked oven door as a precaution.

How much water does Samsung self clean cycle use? ›

The water consumption per cycle is approximately 39 to 53 litres. Water consumption and time taken for the cycle will depend on a number of factors such as the temperature set, the cycle, the size of the load, water pressure, water hardness, water inlet temperature, and the degree of soiling.

Can I add vinegar to self clean washing machine? ›

How do I clean it? "If your appliance has a self-clean sanitize cycle, then just wipe down what you can and run the cycle with some vinegar in it," Dulude says. "The sanitize cycle gets the water inside the machine hot enough to kill the bacteria and remove the dirt without much effort on your part."

Can vinegar damage your washing machine? ›

Vinegar is sometimes used as a fabric softener or for getting rid of stains and odors in laundry. But as with dishwashers, it can damage the rubber seals and hoses in some washing machines to the point of causing leaks.

What happens if you don't self clean your washing machine? ›

The dirt that disappears from your clothes, towels, and sheets has to go somewhere, which means grime can build up inside your washing machine over time. Without regular cleaning, the appliance might also harbor leftover detergent, hard-water deposits, and mold or mildew around the lid.

Is quick wash just as good? ›

Quick washes are also better for your clothes. By causing less damage to the clothing fibres, they allow your clothes to last longer, saving you again. Check the laundry symbols on the fabric care labels on your garment to find the best temperature to wash your clothes and which wash cycle you should use.

How long does self clean work? ›

In most modern ovens, the oven door automatically locks and the temperature rises to between 800 and 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit to incinerate any food remains, in a cycle lasting between two to six hours.

Why does my Samsung Washer keep saying self clean? ›

After 20 washing cycles, the Self Clean LED reminder icon and the Self Clean cycle LED will blink on the control panel for an hour and then turn off automatically. The reminder will appear on the control panel for 5 additional consecutive cycles before turning off.

Why is the self clean cycle so long? ›

The Long Self-Cleaning Cycle

Four-to-five hours is normal, considering that the self-cleaning oven temperature reaches about 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit before it starts to incinerate the food particles inside.

Can I use vinegar in Samsung front loader? ›

Because of this, it's better to use a small amount of fabric softener or use a natural alternative. White vinegar will soften your clothes and actually helps clean the washing machine! It also doesn't leave behind a strong odor like you'd expect.

Do all front load washers have mold problems? ›

Mold problems in front-load washing machines are very common, but not inevitable! The key culprit for this problem is the front-load washer's sealing door. Unlike Top Load Washers , a front-loader has a door surrounded by a rubber gasket that creates an airtight seal when shut.

What kills washing machine mold? ›

Run the wash cycle on the hottest setting your machine offers with a cup of bleach or vinegar. If using bleach, pour it into the compartment designated for bleach. If using vinegar, pour it into the detergent slot. If your machine has a self-clean cycle, you can use that setting.

What laundry detergent kills mold spores? ›

Mold Killing Detergent to Remove Mold From Clothes

Two mold killing detergents are Oxiclean and Clorox.

How do hotels keep towels white? ›

Most hotels use peroxide-based laundry detergents to keep their sheets and towels bright. While these compounds are extremely successful at preventing white linens from greying or yellowing, they do necessitate some amount of knowledge. When used incorrectly, they might cause damage to your linens.

Does vinegar and baking soda damage washing machine? ›

Although vinegar and baking soda shouldn't be harmful to your washing machine if used in moderate amounts, extreme use can impact some of the coatings on the drive shaft components, which are the parts responsible for switching cycles from agitate to spin.

Can you put vinegar and baking soda in washing machine at the same time? ›

There's one very important caveat, she notes: “Both vinegar and baking soda can be used to clean your washing machine and clothing, but they should not be mixed together because they neutralize each other.”

Can baking soda clean a washer? ›

Vinegar and baking soda make a great cleaner for washing machines because they remove hard water deposits as well as dirt and grime.

Can I use OxiClean to clean my washing machine? ›

Tear one pouch of OxiClean™ Washing Machine Cleaner and pour it into the washer drum of your front load or top load washer. Ensure the washer has been completely emptied. Do not add any detergent to this cycle. Select the Clean Washer cycle and start the machine.

What can I use to clean my washing machine instead of affresh? ›

Vinegar and baking soda are amazing natural cleansers and can be used safely in your washing machine. Add a quart of white vinegar and a cup of baking soda to the cleaning mode and run the washer without clothes.

Can you leave racks in during self-clean? ›

We do not recommend leaving the oven racks in the oven during the self-clean cycle. The racks may warp and discolor due to the extreme heat created during this cycle. The racks can also damage the rack guides of the porcelain oven cavity due to expansion and contraction.

What is the benefit of self-clean technology in washing machine? ›

Washing Machines with Self Clean Technology

The feature prevents dirt and bacteria accumulation inside the machine by using smart balls that are germ-free and anti-bacterial, ensuring a healthy and clean inner drum.

Can I turn off self-clean? ›

Turning a unit off during self-clean is discouraged. Damage can occur if self-clean does not complete. If canceled or interrupted, the door stays locked until the unit cools to a safe temperature level. The amount of time it takes for the oven to cool to a safe level varies.

How do you know when self-clean is done? ›

The oven will turn off automatically when the cleaning cycle is over, but you won't be able to open it until it cools down to regular baking temperatures. Wipe away ash residue with damp cloth.

How do you activate self-clean? ›

  1. Step 1: Remove Loose Items and Quickly Wipe Down the Inside. Remove any loose items to prevent damage: oven racks, the broiler pan, all cookware, foil and any plastic on the range cooktop. ...
  2. Step 2: Run the Self-Clean Cycle. ...
  3. Step 3: Wait for the Cycle to Complete and Oven to Cool. ...
  4. Step 4: Wipe Out the Oven Cavity.

Why are Samsung wash cycles so long? ›

A washer that continuously takes too long to wash may have a malfunctioning load sense system, or greater problems with its control panel. There may also be issues with your water inlet valve, which pulls water into the appliance for each cycle.

How often should you clean Samsung washing machine filter? ›

Samsung recommends cleaning the pump filter at least once a month or after 40 laundry loads. Making sure the pump filter is clean will prevent odors, mold, and mildew, and it will ensure the washer drains correctly.

How hot does Samsung self clean get? ›

A safety feature of the system uses a mechanical interlock to keep the oven door closed and locked until the temperature inside reaches approximately 572 F° or 300° C.

Is bleach or vinegar better to clean washing machine? ›

If you're a fan of bleach in the laundry sphere, you're in luck because it might just be the hardest-working product for sanitizing. If you want to avoid bleach and its harsh chemicals, though, white vinegar is a good alternative with powerful deodorizing and bacteria-killing properties.

How much white vinegar should I use to clean my washing machine? ›

Measure out two cups of distilled white vinegar and pour them directly into your washing machine's liquid detergent dispenser. Set your front-loading machine on its longest cycle with the hottest water.

How much vinegar and baking soda to clean washing machine? ›

Add two cups of white cleaning vinegar to detergent dispenser. Run it through a complete cycle. Run another cycle on the highest level and at the hottest water temperature, this time adding one-half cup of baking soda to the drum. When cycle is done, wipe inside drum of washer with a damp microfiber cloth.

What is the sanitize cycle on Samsung washer? ›

Sanitize: For heavily soiled, colorfast garments. This cycle heats the water to 150 degrees Fahrenheit to eliminate bacteria. Spin Only: Provides a spin to remove water. You can also run this after a different cycle for extra spinning.

Is it worth cleaning washing machine? ›

"Dirt, grime, and mold can accumulate and cause your machine to smell and eventually malfunction, so it's important to clean your washing machine every so often."

Can I use affresh in my Samsung washer? ›

A: Sure you can. This product can be used in any washing machine both front load and top load machines. Don't run it with a load of clothes and be sure to run a heavy duty cycle when using the product.

Why do people put vinegar in the washing machine? ›

Using vinegar in laundry will whiten, brighten, reduce odors, and soften clothes without harsh chemicals. Vinegar is inexpensive, and it's safe to use in both standard and high-efficiency washers.

Is distilled vinegar the same as white vinegar? ›

White vinegar, also known as distilled vinegar or spirit vinegar, is made by fermenting grain alcohol (ethanol) which then turns into acetic acid. Water is then added to the vinegar, so white vinegar is made of five to ten percent acetic acid and ninety to ninety-five percent water.

How do I make my towels soft again? ›

Add Baking Soda

Mix half a cup of baking soda along with a normal detergent dose for fluffier and cleaner towels. Baking soda also naturally eliminates musty and mildew smells that come from towels remaining damp for too long.

Do you put washing powder in a drum clean Samsung? ›

You can clean the drum without a cleaning agent when you use the ECO DRUM CLEAN cycle. (DO NOT USE a common cleaning agent for the ECO DRUM CLEAN and ECO DRUM CLEAN+ function.) Chemical residue in the drum may cause damage to the laundry or the drum of the washing machine.

Why does my Samsung washer keep saying self clean? ›

After 20 washing cycles, the Self Clean LED reminder icon and the Self Clean cycle LED will blink on the control panel for an hour and then turn off automatically. The reminder will appear on the control panel for 5 additional consecutive cycles before turning off.

Can you use gain pods in a Samsung self clean top load washer? ›

You should NOT use detergent pods in the top washer.

How do I clean the drum on my Samsung washing machine? ›

[Washing Machine] How to clean the washing drum
  1. Push [Power] button.
  2. Select a washing tub clean course on your display panel. (optional) Check your model is need to detergent or not.
  3. Close the lid after pouring the detergent into the washing tub. (Make sure to use the recommended detergent)
  4. Push [Start/Pause] button.
Apr 9, 2022

What does drum clean mean on a Samsung washing machine? ›

ECO DRUM CLEAN function will help to clean your washing machine automatically, eliminating mold that may be built up inside the drum. It is recommended that you perform this cycle regularly to clean the drum by removing bacteria from it.

How do I calibrate my Samsung self cleaning washing machine? ›

  1. Remove all laundry or any other contents in the machine.
  2. Power off, and then power on the washing machine on again.
  3. Hold down Temp.
  4. Press START/PAUSE to run the Calibration cycle.
  5. The drum will rotate clockwise and counterclockwise for about 3 minutes.
Oct 30, 2022

What is the benefit of self clean technology in washing machine? ›

Washing Machines with Self Clean Technology

The feature prevents dirt and bacteria accumulation inside the machine by using smart balls that are germ-free and anti-bacterial, ensuring a healthy and clean inner drum.

Do pods mess up your washing machine? ›

Are laundry pods bad for your washer? No, these are totally safe to toss in your washing machine.

Are pods or powder better for washing machine? ›

In tests, washing powder has outperformed liquids and pods on stain removal. It's often the cheapest option, with Persil starting at just 11p a wash. It usually contains bleaching agents, which help your machine to self-clean during normal use.

Are pods better than liquid? ›

The Pros of Laundry Pods

When the pod hits the water, the film dissolves, releasing the cleaning ingredients into the wild world of soiled garments. Aside from this obvious convenience factor, many people consider laundry pods superior to liquid detergents because they come premeasured.


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