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poor a bottle of bleach in the washer .....run the washer with no clothes...the blead should kill any mols or mildew causing the yucky smells......boil some water and poor it in the fabric conditioner hole, this should loosen anything clogging it...thanks
Towel mildew odor is transferred from the washer to towels and clothes. The washer must be cleaned first. After cleaning the washer and towels washing habits must change to stop mold smell from returning.
Washing machine mold / mildew is caused by:
#1 cause is overuse of detergents. Detergent companies are notorious for instructing to use too much detergent. Especially with soft water or when using liquid detergent no more than 1 tbsp of any detergent should be used.
#2 most common cause is using fabric softener because it's dispensed in the rinse cycle and will coat the inside of the outer tub with residue that is a food source for mold to grow.
#3 using only cold water for washing is fine but makes preventative maintenance very important. A weekly hot soak will dissolve odor-causing residue from inside your washer.
#4 not using the washer. If the clothes washer isn't used very often maintenance is especially important. If leaving for a vacation it's a good idea to clean your washer. Do a search to "remove washer odor" to read just how big the problem is. There are all natural washer cleaners that will also remove mildew odor from towels and clothing after the washer has been cleaned.
I've had this same problem and solved it by removing the detergent/bleach/softener dispenser drawer from the machine and seriously cleaning out all of the "gunk" from the drawer and from inside the drawer area on washer. Sometimes I have had to repeat the cleaning and then the fabric softener begins dispensing again. I have model # 417.43042200 but it may work on all the Kenmore front loading washers.
I just did it. All you do is pull up on the blue part -- put the fingers of both hands under the rim and pull. It isn't screwed or bolted on. If there's a lot of gunk built up, it's all the harder to pull up. Be prepared for some yucky stuff. It would be nice if that whole section would come out, since you have to clean the area below with Q-tips.
The front door seal stays moist an will grow mold. The mold smells and must be removed from the seal. To remove the mold you will need to remove by manipulating the seal to get under it. The mold will stink up you towels and other fabrics that have much of a pile to them. I have run my laundry with an oxygen sanitizer that I use to clean beer brewing equipment. This is the only thing that gets the smell out. Sears has a service flash on this but no solution. You might try leaving the door open so the seal can dry.
I'm sure you heard a small motor running from time to time during a cycle. That moves an "arm" which sends water to the different chambers during a cycle. Fabric softener is dispensed when water goes to that chamber and dilutes the fabric softener. That chamber then empties by a siphoning action.
If you want to narrow down the problem a little to help trouble shoot -- put some wet rags in and run the Rinse and Spin cycle with some fabric softener. If the softener is not dispensed, then you know that the water isn't being sent to that chamber properly.
If you are intrepid enough to take the top off your washer, do that and see if the arm appears to be moving during a normal cycle. Maybe the arm got dislodged or broken during the move.
If water isn't being diverted properly, I think this calls for a real repair person.
The detergent dispenser is located above the detergent drawer.
A water pipe is connected to it and water entrance and distributed to drawer's cells (following the programmed cycle)by a lever's movement (part of the dispenser). The lever movement is controlled by two solenoids that received their power from the timer.
By opening upper machine's cover you will have an access to the dispenser.
Disconnect the power cable from the machine before moving to next test !!!!
Look first that they are not any disconnected wires.
Move manually dispenser's lever and see if water running to all cells (depend on your movement). In case it doesn't work properly remove the unit from the machine and try to clean it (I hope it will help, otherwise you should replace the unit).
In case it works properly (manually) - you should test by a multi-tester solenoid's resistance. the one that doesn't have a resistance measurement should be replaced.
Good luck !!