We use dishwashers to clean and sterilize our utensils and dishes. It can be hard to remember that our dishwasher itself needs to be cleaned out and sterilized as well, to do the most effective job cleaning our dishes. Below are some great cleaning tips for your dishwasher.
1. Toothbrush: Use a used, old toothbrush dipped in hot, soapy water to clean out the hard to reach areas in the dishwasher. It works great cleaning out edges on the doors, and can do an impressive job getting buildup and grime loose. Look at the bottom of the door and see if there is anything that might have settled there over time.
2. All-Purpose Cleaner: Spray down the dishwasher with your favorite all-purpose cleaner. Use a clean, damp washcloth to wipe off the cleaner. Use a cleaner that is both abrasive and cuts down on grime and germs, but also is soft enough not to do damage to your washing machine.
If you do not like using a clean cloth you can also use a cleaning sponge. Sponges allow you more ability to scrub off any buildup, though both work great. Just like the toothbrush, be sure to use hot, soapy water when wiping down the machine.
3. Drain: Check the drain of the dishwasher. Drains can get full of food chunks that are left on the dishes. It is important to remember to check the drain of the dishwasher routinely to make sure nothing is clogging it or getting it backed up. If there is too much debris it can cause some bad scenarios for your washer. For one thing it can clog the drain of the machine. Other things include causing dishes to get scratched from loose debris or damaging the washer’s pump system.
4. Trays: Don’t forget to wipe down the entire dishwasher. This includes wiping down the trays. Wipe down the sides, bottom, and ceiling of the dishwasher. For dishwashers that have a blower wheel or fan, wipe that part of the washer as well.
5. Vinegar: There are a few tricks to getting your dishwasher clean with out using harmful, abrasive chemicals. A great trick is to use vinegar. Simply put a cup of vinegar in a microwave and dishwasher safe cup and place on the top tray of the dishwasher. Run on your highest heat setting with out any other dishes in the washer.
Vinegar is a natural, safe cleaning agent that does a great job of getting rid of odors and sanitizing things. It will loosen up any grease that might have built up along the way. After running the cycle, do another quick wipe down with a clean, damp sponge or washcloth. Any vinegar smell will be short lived and you won’t have to deal with a musty odor of a dirty dishwasher.