When we bought our house, it came with a washing machine and dryer. The previous family had used liquid fabric softener for so long that the smell of it was in the washer. I cleaned the inside of that machine with hot water and bleach numerous times -- no help, the smell was always there. What is that? It's like the odor has become embedded in the plastic parts. The good news is that my clothes do not have that smell when they come out. Whew!