How to deep clean your dishwasher

Let’s guide you with deep cleaning your dishwasher to get sparkling dishes and a machine that operates at its prime.

Your dishwasher stands as a hero, battling food residues to ensure your culinary tools emerge gleaming and ready for action. Yet, your dishwasher needs a little care and attention from time to time. Let’s guide you with deep cleaning your dishwasher to get sparkling dishes and a machine that operates at its prime.

Regular maintenance

By following these steps and incorporating regular maintenance into your routine, you can ensure that your dishwasher continues to provide sparkling clean dishes while also extending its lifespan. A well-maintained dishwasher not only saves you time and effort but also contributes to a more efficient and hygienic kitchen environment.

  • Scrape plates
    Before loading dishes, scrape off excess food to prevent debris from clogging the filters and spray arms.

  • Rinse aids
    Use a rinse aid to prevent water spots and enhance the drying performance of your dishwasher. Put the rinse aid in the reservoir on the inside of your dishwasher door, next to the dishwasher detergent tray.

  • Leave the door open
    After completing a cycle, leave the dishwasher door slightly open to allow moisture to escape, preventing mold growth.

  • Monthly cleaning
    Deep clean your dishwasher following the step-by-step guide below at least once a month, or more often if you notice any issues.

What you need to deep clean your dishwasher

  • Dish soap: To clean the dishwasher filter.
  • Microfiber cloth or a sponge: To wipe down surfaces.
  • Baking soda: To clean optional stubborn stains and for the final wash. 
  • Toothpick: To remove any debris from the spray holes. 
  • White vinegar: To break down mineral deposits and odors during a washing cycle.
  • All-purpose cleaner: For cleaning the filter, and the internal and external surfaces.

Step-by-step guide

With these steps, you're equipped to restore your dishwasher to its former glory, maintaining its efficiency and ensuring your dishes emerge triumphantly pristine.

  1. Empty the dishwasher
    Start by removing all dishes, racks, and utensil holders from the dishwasher. This gives you full access to all areas that need cleaning.

  2. Remove and clean the filters
    Most dishwashers have removable filters located at the bottom. These filters catch food particles and debris to prevent clogs. Remove the filters and rinse them under warm water. If they're particularly dirty, soak them in a mixture of warm water and dish soap for a few minutes before scrubbing them with a soft (tooth)brush. Rinse thoroughly and let them dry before putting them back in place.

  3. Wipe down the interior and exterior
    Use a damp microfiber cloth or sponge to wipe down the interior walls and door of your dishwasher. Pay close attention to the crevices and edges where grime can accumulate. If you notice any stubborn stains, mix a paste of baking soda and water, apply it to the stain, and let it sit for a while before scrubbing gently.

  4. Clean the spray arms
    The spray arms can get clogged with mineral deposits or food particles, affecting water distribution. Remove the spray arms by twisting or unclipping them, depending on your dishwasher model. Use a toothpick to clear any debris from the spray holes. Rinse the arms thoroughly and reattach them.

  5. Run a vinegar cycle
    Place a cup of white vinegar on the top rack of the dishwasher. Run a hot water cycle on the highest setting. Vinegar helps break down mineral deposits and eliminate odors.

  6. Baking soda final wash
    Once the vinegar cycle is complete, sprinkle a cup of baking soda along the bottom of the dishwasher. Run a short hot water cycle. Baking soda further helps to break down stains and odors, leaving your dishwasher smelling fresh.

  7. Clean the exterior
    Don't forget the outside of your dishwasher! Wipe down the control panel, buttons, and exterior surfaces with a damp cloth. Use an all-purpose cleaner if necessary, but avoid abrasive materials that could damage the finish.

  8. Reassemble and run a normal cycle
    After completing all the cleaning steps, reassemble the dishwasher by placing the racks and filters back in their respective positions. Run a short test cycle with no dishes to ensure that everything is working properly and that there are no leaks.

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