Hotpoint First Edition WM52 clothes don't seem clean

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My Hotpoint First Edition WM52 is washing through the cycle in a seemingly normal manner and is using hot water as the boiler kicks in on the cycle. The problem is clothes don't smell clean when it's been washed. I used my mums washer and the same detergent as usual and clothes that had not been fresh for months are now fine!! I live in a hard water area and she lives in a soft water area?? Could that be the problem or is it the filter? In which case - where is the filter??
 
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have you washed the sludge out of the soap drawer and the slot it goes into? have you given the machine a Hot Cotton wash (no powder) with clean old towels to clear out congealed powder?

Check the soap makers instructions to see you are not using more than they recommend.

If you do a lot of low-temperature washes, the undissolved powder tends to accumulate inside. You can detect this by doing the hot cotton wash with no powder, and it foams up as it dissolves the accumulation.

Have a look at the route the drain hose takes to make sure dirty water from the sink can't flow back to the machine.
 
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