A Simple Guide to Detoxing Your Dishwasher

Many of us take our dishwashers for granted, but they are actually one of the hardest working appliances in our homes. In a typical home, the dishwasher will be used at least once a day, and while your dishes may come out sparkling clean, this doesn’t mean that the inside of the dishwasher is actually clean. Keeping a dishwasher free of bacteria and germs is an important part of ensuring your dishes are clean, as any traces of grime inside the appliance can easily transfer to cutlery and plates. Fortunately, we have a simple guide to ensure that your dishwasher is thoroughly detoxed.

Image of a dishwasher

Scrub Those Racks

The first step of a dishwasher detox is to remove the racks from your dishwasher for a good scrubbing. Use a gentle detergent or soap with a toothbrush to scrub away any stuck on grime or gunk. Pay particular attention to the utensil rack that can be prone to trapping food particles. If necessary, soak the racks in warm water to loosen any remnants of food so that it can be easily scrubbed off. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or abrasive materials such as wire wool that can damage the coating on the racks and make them prone to damage.

Wipe the Gasket

Just like the gasket on your refrigerator, your dishwasher door gasket can easily become clogged with food particles and bits of grime. Many people are surprised by the amount of dirt trapped in an appliance door gasket. You need to take care not to damage the gasket with cleaning, so use a paper towel dipped in white vinegar to gently wipe down all the folds. White vinegar will allow you to remove any particles and it also has disinfectant properties, so while it may smell strongly for approximately ten minutes, it will kill any lingering bacteria or germs.

Tackle the Sprayer Arms

Most models of dishwasher allow you to remove the sprayer arm from the dishwasher. When you flip the arm over, you’ll notice the holes where the water comes out. Unfortunately, these holes can get filled with gunk and food particles. Use a toothpick or cotton swab to remove anything stuck in the holes and give the whole arm a good clean to get rid of any food scraps or dirt underneath the arm.

Clean the Filter

All dishwasher models have a filter, but getting to it for cleaning depends on the specific model. Some allow you to simply lift the filter out of the floor of the dishwasher, while others need you to perform some disassembly. If you can’t see the filter to remove it, you’ll need to consult your owner’s manual for specific removal instructions. Be sure to keep all screws and fixings safe during cleaning as you don’t want to have to chase a rogue screw down the drain. A soft brush is ideal for gentle scrubbing, but remember to use a delicate touch, as you don’t want to create a hole in the mesh.

Run a Cleaning Cycle

Once you’ve cleaned all the above components and reassembled your dishwasher, you can finish off the detox process with a cleaning cycle. This is very simple to do as all you’ll need is a dishwasher-safe container filled with white vinegar. Place this in the lower rack and run a hot cycle with nothing else in the dishwasher. This will allow the vinegar to get to all those nooks and corners, disinfecting any lingering bacteria or germs.

If you’re still having issues with your dishwasher, a professional home appliance repair technician can offer effective and long-lasting solutions. For assistance with all of your dishwasher repair needs, ensure you speak to a professional appliance repair service.