Category Archives: Environment

Cleaning and Sanitizing Your Washing Machine Inside and Out

A washing machine is an essential appliance of your house, and it should keep properly functioning for maintaining a constant smile on the face of the members of the house.

It sounds hilarious, but the cleaning of clothes regularly is very important as well as essential. So, the appliance that aids in this work must also have sound functioning.

The washing machine, top load or front load needs routine cleaning to keep it functioning well. The failure to do so will create bad odors, germ and bacteria build up. The washing machines need to be cleaned from the outside as well as from the inside effectively.

Bringing Joy Back to Washing ClothesThere is a simple process which will keep your laundry smelling fresh and squeaky clean.  But are you confused about the selection of natural or artificial agents to clean it? Here is a complete guide to all the ingredients and the methods that can be applied to get a clean washing machine.

1. Cleaning the gasket and the door

The doors are the areas which need cleaning after each washing cycle. The rubber of the door tends to accumulate foam and the residue. It needs regular cleaning as the deposits may convert into molds (black or white) and bacteria. A cotton towel may be used for this purpose. The rubber gasket is pulled and inspected to see the buildup of mold, mildew or any piece of cloth. Wipe the area clean with a soft damp cotton towel. The area should be dried using a dry cloth.

If some stubborn residue doesn’t get removed with plain water, use a towel soaked in hydrogen peroxide or white vinegar. This surely will loosen up all the grease and mold deposits. The area will be disinfected, and the machine will be ready for the next use.

2. De-scaling the inner drum

The repeated washes in a top load washing machine or a front load washing machine lead to deposition of limescale in the washer. This can be removed by the process called de-scaling. The de-scaling pouches are available in the market as well as online. The contents of the pack can be emptied in the dispenser, and the washing machine can be run on a usual cycle but with the temperature at 90-degree Celsius. This will open all the closed pores due to lime deposits. Also, it will clean all the inlet and outlet pipes.

A natural ingredient for the same purpose is white vinegar and baking soda. These two contents, when mixed in equal amounts in the dispenser tray, will react vigorously to clean the inner drum. One cup baking soda is added to the detergent dispenser, and one cup vinegar is added into the drum. Then the washing machine is set to a normal cycle without clothes. This will thoroughly clean the washing machine and deodorize it.

Stains on washing drumIn case of stubborn deposits, the washer should be set for the hottest temperatures. Then two cups of vinegar should be added to the drum. Even the quantity of baking soda should be doubled in the detergent dispenser. After some minutes of agitating of the machine, the machine can be stopped or paused for one hour. This will allow the vinegar solution to act on the extra dirty areas.

After that, let the cycle be finished. This way your machine will get rid of all sort of buildup and soften the soap scum that may be blocking the washer and the hoses.

Hydrogen peroxide is also known to help in these situations. It is a strong chemical agent. It is eco-friendly also as it dissolves in water to form oxygen and hydrogen. It is easily available in the market in 3% solution form and there are more reasons to use it for your laundry.

Lemon juice solution can also be used as lemon is readily available and is a natural cleaning agent. And obviously who doesn’t love the smell of lemon?

After the washing cycle is finished, clean the drum using a soft and clean cloth. Keep the door ajar for a few hours to remove moisture since moisture can lead to rusting of the inner machinery.

For any sort of machinery related fault or in case your machine is not working after a wash or due to some technical you can call TX Appliance repair and look for professional help. It is advisable to always consult professional repair service than finding DIY solutions which can lead to dangerous accidents.

3. The exterior of the machine

The machine needs cleaning outside daily. Cleaning thoroughly all the hidden areas will keep the washing machine perfectly working for years. These areas have cobwebs formed which need to be removed on a regular basis.

The exterior and control panel can be cleaned with a gentle all-purpose cleaning spray. To clean the outside of the machine, a cloth soaked in vinegar can also be used. This removes any dust and dirt buildup. Please take care that the cloth doesn’t get too wet which is to be used on the control panels.

4. Cleaning the soap dispenser

The soap or detergent dispenser needs cleaning every fortnight. This tray tends to accumulate scum and dirt. So, the detergent dispenser tray is removed from the machine by pressing it. Its interior and exterior are cleaned thoroughly using a toothbrush. Soapy warm water does the required job. If the stains are too stubborn, use vinegar. After cleaning the tray needs to be dried using a clean cloth before inserting it back.

5. Filter

Cleaning the filter of the machine should also be done every month. The machine is unplugged, and the water source is turned off. Now, the hose is removed from the faucet, and the filter is removed and cleaned. It can be cleaned in running water. The hardened debris may be removed using a toothbrush. Also in a front loading washing machine, there is a front door filter at the bottom. Access this filter using a coin and remove the water and debris and other objects from it.

With all these steps and solutions, the washing machine will surely smell fresh and look sparkling clean. The laundry issues are solved. But an important maintenance tip is to keep the door of the washing machine open for some hours to allow air to circulate inside. Also, avoid using chlorine or bleaching agent for cleaning purposes as it may be harmful to the drum as well as the hoses.


By Bev Vaillancourt, CETF Board Member

As you may know, XCEL Energy and American Transmission Company (ATC)’s application for the Badger-Coulee line has been received by the Wisconsin PSC. Following that, SOUL and CETF separately applied to the Wisconsin PSC for intervenor funds to cover the cost of expert testimony as part of the application review process. Though together the request was for over $200,000, the Wisconsin PSC determined that the intervenor applications were duplicative enough to award a joint amount of $75,000.

With that decision, SOUL and CETF were faced with the problem of having to dramatically reduce what the two groups could offer in compensation to expert witnesses while still presenting a solid and compelling stance that the Badger Coulee line is 1) not needed, 2) environmentally harmful, and 3) economically obscene. In effect, SOUL and CETF were expected to divide the funds in any way the two groups could agree to do so.

After a great deal of introspection and discussion, the SOUL and CETF boards independently voted to join forces and dollars, with a focus on compensating key expert witnesses. A newly developed joint workplan, as required by the WPSC, will be submitted soon. A steering committee made up of 2 SOUL board members and 2 CETF board members has been formed to monitor progress of all documents required of expert witnesses, to ensure that filings with the WPSC are done in a timely manner, and to maximize our opportunities for collaboration and effective dissent.

Fund raising efforts are ongoing to try to maximize the dollars awarded by the WPSC. Look for more information on this website posted as this process unfolds.

We will keep you updated as more happens. The CETF Board is excited about working in joint effort with SOUL. In unity there is strength! The CETF board very much wants to hear from you. Feel free to post your thoughts to this blog.


From The Power Line  a blog hosted by Bill Howley

Scott Sklar is one of the most expert of US experts on decentralized power.  Here is a very informative article he posted recently on Renewable Energy World.  Mr. Sklar takes apart power company claims that by using modern decentralized power technologies, small scale electricity producers are getting a free ride from consumers stuck in the clutches of obsolete generation and distribution.

This is a must read for anyone wanting to know “the rest of the story.”  To read The Power Line blog, take a look here.

Just a note: Bill Howley is an avid blogger on energy issues.

Must-Visit Parks in New York City

New York City is not only famous for its fun and modern vibe, but it is also known as a green city as it is surrounded by a lot of parks. Thus, it is like you can have the best of both worlds when you are in this city – you can bask in the beauty of nature, and at the same time, you can enjoy the fun city life.

We have rounded up some of the best parks in the city that you should not miss when in New York. Plus, if you are into biking, here are some good options to ride your bike at.

Outdoor film viewing at the Brooklyn Bridge 1. Brooklyn Bridge Park

This park is located just under the Brooklyn Bridge. If you want to have a nice view of Manhattan, this is the place to be. This park is perfect for some weekend picnics with your family and friends or just strolling by yourself and enjoying the greens surrounding you. Brooklyn Bridge Park is also the venue for some special events such as free Movies with a View as well as kayaking and fitness classes. Ultimately, there are a lot of activities you can do in this park.

2. Central Park

Probably the most notable and famous park in the whole New York. Your visit to the city will not be complete without paying this park a visit and rent bikes in NYC to get around this iconic place. The Central Park is where you can find the Strawberry Fields which became famous because it was dedicated to John Lennon. This is a huge 38-acre park that has various areas you can enjoy. There’s an area where there’s a lot of people which is perfect for those who want to enjoy the fun vibe of the park. While there are also some areas which are quiet enough for some me-time.

3. Flushing Meadows – Corona Park

This is the second largest park in New York City. Since the park is big enough, there are a lot of recreational activities you can do here such as soccer, baseball, cricket, tennis and many others. There’s also an art museum here, a zoo and a botanical garden. Thus, whatever your preference is, there’s definitely a thing for you at Flushing Meadows – Corona Park.

Governors Island4. The Hills at Governor’s Island

This park is the perfect venue for some me-time, or you are contemplating on what to write about or what to paint. The Hills at Governor’s Island boasts of amazing views with a grassy spot. Its landscape architecture is made in such a way that the park will be safe from natural disasters. This is also an excellent place for those who love to bike around.

5. Hudson River Park

This is another vast park which is just adjacent to the Hudson River. It is famous for its being near the shoreline of the river and for its landscaped lawns and piers which are perfect for jogging around, skating, strolling and even cycling. There’s also bike rental available here in case you don’t have a bike, but you like to ride one. The Hudson River Park is also famous as a venue for some ecological study for some students since it has a 400-acres estuarine sanctuary.


Bill Howley writes….

If you want to see really high density HVtransmission, drive to Montreal.  There are huge lines all over the place on the south bank of the St. Lawrence.  And they are all because of Hydro Quebec’s huge, and I mean huge, hydropower system in northern Quebec.  If you are ever in Quebec City, go to the Quebec Museum there.  Hydro Quebec give them gazillions of dollars and got a big wing of its own to tout its hydro power developments on land and waters they stole from the Cree back in the 1960s and 1970s.  Strangers Devour the Land is an excellent account of this theft.

I’m a big fan of hydro power, but this is exactly what is happening now with Big Wind.  Big development of renewable resources must always happen in areas where the basic resource is maximized, because big, centralized development is so expensive.  That means exploiting high resource areas and, because these areas have relatively low population density, building massive transmission to reach high load areas.

Read more about North America’s love affair with transmission lines at The Power Line.


You’ve probably heard of the harmful health effects of the electromagnetic radiation (aka EMR or EMF) emitted by high voltage powerlines. You may also have heard that there’s no certain proof that the adverse health effects were caused by the EMF. It reminds one of how we heard for decades that there may or may not be a link between cigarettes and lung cancer. An extensive BioInitiative Report released last year makes a strong case that responsible public policy should limit public exposure to EMF. The report is long, but at least take a look at the Preface and the Summary and Conclusions section. The briefest summary starts on page 34.