Sediment in the Bottom of Washing Machine (All You Need To Know)

Sediment can settle at the bottom of washing machines; it is normal. They are usually small, soft, or hard particles with ranging colors. When sediment is allowed to accumulate in a washing machine for long, it can break down the washing machine. It can also slow down its operation or cause it to malfunction.

 How did sediments enter and accumulate inside washing machines? Since sediment accumulation in washing machines cannot be prevented entirely, knowing how it enters the washer will help you to reduce its inflow.

This blog will explain how sediment settles at the bottom of washing machines. You will learn how to get rid of the sediment in your washer to prevent further damage. I will round up the blog with how to reduce sediment accumulation in your washing machine. 

Causes of sediment at the bottom of washing machine

Sediment cannot accumulate at the bottom of an abandoned washing machine. Sediment enters the washing machine from what you put into it. 

The sediments are from clothes, water, detergents, clothing softener, bleach, etc. Below are the full explanations of how sediment accumulates in your washing machine. 

  • Unclean water

The sediment that settled at the bottom of most washing machines came from unclean water. The water that runs in some homes, especially those with personal boreholes, usually contains dissolved particles. The particles can be clay, sand, and other dissolved elements. Those particles will settle or stick to the bottom of the washing machine. Some of those particles can stick to the clothes you are washing in the machine. 

  • Dirt from clothes

The accumulated sediment in a washing machine can be gotten from dirty clothes. Accumulated sediment is usually in the form of sand, wooly particles, designer stones, etc. The particles on your clothes will settle at the bottom of the washing machine. Turn stone-designed clothes inside out before washing them. This will prevent the stones from falling off into the washer. 

When you visit the beach, you will likely get lots of sand on your clothes. In the process of washing those clothes, the sand will settle at the bottom of the washing machine. 

a variety of colored clothes are mixed in a wooden basket that looks dirty

How to get rid of sediments in the washing machine?

The buildup of sticky sediment in your washing machine can stain the clothes you wash in it. Some sediment might be unnoticeable. This is because they settle in the drainage system or below the water tank. Without consistent cleaning of the drainage system, you will notice the sediments only when the washer stops working or starts malfunctioning. A washing machine with a blocked drainage system will not function properly.  Here is how to clean sediment in your washing machine.

  1. Manually scrub the washing machine with soap and water. Remove as many sticky sediments in the water tank as you can. Use warm water to rinse the washing machine. 
  2. Fill the washing machine with water. Add 4 table stones of lemon juice or citric acid. Turn on the washer to the fastest and longest speed. 
  3. Turn off the washing machine. Hang the water outlet hose on the washing machine to prevent draining water from flowing out. Drain the citric acid water into the drainage system below the washing machine. 
  4. Allow the citric acid water to stay in the drainage system for 4 hours. This is to help dissolve any available sediment within the drainage system and hose.
  5. After four hours, release the drainage hose and allow the water to flow out. 
  6. Pour water into the washing machine to rinse its drainage system.
  7. To check for sand and slits at the bottom of the washer, remove the bottom lid of the washing machine. Beneath it is the water drainage system. Put your hand in every corner of the drainage system and remove every particle you find. 
  8. Scrub the drainage system with soap and rinse it with water. Check to be sure that nothing is obstructing the water drainage outlet hose
  9. Return the bottom lid of the washer

How to prevent sediment accumulation in washing machines?

Prevention is always better than cure. It is easier to prevent sediment accumulation in your washing machine than to get rid of them. The accumulation of Stoney sediment at the bottom of the washing machine can cause more damage. Below are ways of reducing sediments inflow into your washing machine

  • Use water inlet filter

A bulk of the sediment found in washing machines comes from unclean water. Some of the particles in the water will not be visible to the eye. Using a water inlet filter in the washing machine will generally reduce the number of sediments that flows into it. You won’t know how unclean your water is until you install a water inlet filter. Check the filter after some days; you will be shocked. 

Even if you have a major water filter installed on the inlet pipe from your borehole, install another filter specifically for your washing machine. Most of the new brands of washing machines come with water filters. Ensure to do periodic cleaning of the water filter and replace it when needed

  • Check clothes before washing

Always check each piece of clothing material before washing it. Some clothes contain Stoney designs that can easily fall off into the drainage system. Turn such clothing inside out before washing them. Check your children’s clothes for sand and silt before putting them into the washing machine. 


Sediment cannot accumulate inside your washing machine unless you introduce them. Use clean water free from particles for washing. Check clothing before washing to prevent the introduction of hard particles and stones into the drainage system.

Sediment settling at the bottom of the washer is unavoidable. The best you can do is reduce the amount of sediment inflow. Whether you notice sediments in your washer or not, clean it periodically. Follow the steps in this blog to get rid of sediments in your washer. 

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