Say goodbye to dirty dishes and a smelly dishwasher with these seven incredible dishwasher cleaning hacks that are sure to leave your appliance looking and smelling like new.
These simple and effective techniques are easy to implement and will save you time, money, and frustration.
Plus, they’ll help to extend the life of your dishwasher and improve its cleaning performance. So why wait?
Read on to discover the best ways to clean and maintain your dishwasher like a pro!
Dos and Don’ts of Dishwasher Cleaning
First, let’s talk about what not to do.
Don’t use abrasive cleaners or harsh chemicals to clean your dishwasher. These can damage the finish on the inside of your dishwasher and make it look worse over time.
Instead, opt for gentle, natural cleaners that will get the job done without damaging your appliance.
In addition to cleaning the inside of your dishwasher, it’s also important to clean the filters and other parts of the appliance. These can become clogged with food particles and grime, which can reduce the efficiency of your dishwasher and lead to poor cleaning results.
Keep reading to find how-to methods for each of the parts of your machine.
1.Bicarbonate of Soda
Bicarbonate of soda (also known as baking soda) is a great way to both clean and ward off any smells.
Before you do this, we recommend removing the racks and cleaning out any obvious food muck in the drain.
Start by sprinkling a generous amount of bicarbonate of soda over the bottom of the dishwasher. Try to distribute it evenly for the best results.
Then, you should run a quick cycle using the hottest water setting possible. The bicarbonate of soda will remove stains, as well as leaving your dishwasher smelling fresh.
Don’t worry about running another cycle on your dishwasher to remove the bicarbonate of soda. Just load it up with those dirty dishes and you’re ready to go!
If you’re a fan of having a citrus smell to your dishwasher, you can place a couple of slices of lemon peel in the cutlery rack of your dishwasher.
We don’t recommend combining both vinegar and bicarbonate of soda, as these will neutralise each other, meaning they won’t be effective at cleaning your dishwasher.
2. White Vinegar
This is a great choice if you have hard water that causes mineral deposits in your dishwasher.
White vinegar is a natural cleanser that works incredibly well for dishwashers, and it’s likely you have some kicking about in your home.
To use vinegar to clean a dishwasher, you can start by mixing equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
Then, you should spray the mixture onto the interior of the dishwasher, making sure to cover all surfaces, including the racks and the door.
Run a normal cycle using hot water with no dishes or detergent. The vinegar will help to remove any stains or build-up that may have accumulated in the dishwasher over time. This will help to freshen the dishwasher and improve its cleaning performance.
Use this trick regularly, or just every few weeks to have a clean looking dishwasher.
Additionally, you can use baking soda to further clean and deodorize the dishwasher.
Simply sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the bottom of the dishwasher before running a normal cycle. This will help to remove any remaining stains or odours.
3. Cleaning the Cutlery Basket
The cutlery basket is a common place for bits of food to accumulate. This will not only worsen how effective your dishwasher cleans your dishes, but will also start to smell after a while.
To clean your cutlery basket in a dishwasher, you can start by removing the basket from the dishwasher and soaking it in warm, soapy water. Leave it for a twenty-four-hour period to soak.
Then, you can use a soft-bristled brush or a sponge to scrub away any stubborn stains or build-up. Remember to thoroughly scrub the handle, as bacteria tend to build up here.
Rinse the basket thoroughly with clean water and dry it with a clean cloth or let it air dry before returning it to the dishwasher.
If it still looks grimy, you can use a cup of vinegar with your regular detergent, running the dishwasher on its hottest setting.
4. Steam Cleaner
Using a steam cleaner will help remove those tough stains that won’t come out with the other methods.
Fill up your steam cleaner with lots of water, and begin to preheat it.
After preheating, use the steam cleaner to clean the inside of your dishwasher. Concentrate on cleaning the corners and hinges, as well as the tracks and sprayer holes.
Remove build-up with the steamer’s brush attachment, taking care not to harm the equipment. To get into tight spaces, use the steam cleaner and an old toothbrush.
You can use the steam cleaner on its own, but it’s also a good idea to use a multi-purpose cleaning spray if you want a full clean. Using a scented cleanser will give it a nice smell afterwards.
After you’ve finished with the steam cleaner, run a brief cycle to rinse out the dishwasher and you’re ready to go!
5. Cleaning the Filter
Your dishwasher will have a filter, also known as a screen, that catches food debris. This will eventually get clogged, so it’s important that you clean it out.
If you don’t, your dishes won’t be cleaned effectively and may even cause wear and tear on your machine.
Remove the filter from the bottom of the dishwasher by unscrewing or lifting it out. Rinse it with hot water in the sink, using your hands or a brush to remove lodged bits of food.
If it still looks dirty, consider soaking it in hot, soapy water for ten minutes, and then rinse it thoroughly.
Have a look at the drain where you removed the filter from.
If it looks unclean, use a sponge or a wet cloth to clean it up. After that, you can put the filter back in. Make sure it is correctly secured in place.
6. Cleaning the Gasket
Cleaning the gasket (the rubber seal around the door of the dishwasher) will help prevent growth of nasty mould and mildew. Doing this regularly is a good habit to adopt.
Use an old sponge with dish soap, or any other detergent of your choice, and run the sponge along the rubber seal. Make sure to get into all the crevices, as this is where most of the mould will accumulate.
This simple trick is quick to do, yet incredibly effective. It has less effect on the performance of your machine, but will certainly keep it from smelling bad.
7. Cleaning the Spray Arms
These essential parts of your dishwasher are often overlooked. Food can become clogged in the spray holes, thereby making your machine clean less effectively.
They should be easy to detach from the dishwasher. Refer to the manual for your specific dishwasher if you’re unsure how to do this.
Once removed, use a scrub brush and detergent to clean the spray arms. If there’s still debris in the spray holes, try using a paper clip to remove it.
When you’ve cleaned it, reinstall it back in your dishwasher and wait to be amazed at the difference it will make to the cleanliness of your dishes.
With these simple cleaning hacks, you can easily get your dishwasher looking and running like new again. So, give them a go and see the difference for yourself!
In The Wash is your guide to the best laundry and cleaning products, tips and tricks. Our mission is to solve the UK’s cleaning and laundry dilemmas!