In the kitchen there is a lot that gets dirty. Appliances are no exception, so cleaning the inside of a dishwasher is a task that you cannot ignore.

How to clean the inside of a dishwasher?  7 useful tips

Last update: January 05, 2022

A good one cleaning routine Not only does it mean that everything in the house looks shiny; cleaning instruments and equipment must be kept sanitized. We must recognize that there are many tasks that we overlook. A classic example is found in the kitchen: do you have any idea how to clean the inside of a dishwasher?

The truth is that this very useful machine, over time accumulates an incredible amount of dirt from food residue, grease and undissolved dishwashing liquid.

You should know that dirt wreaks havoc on essential parts for the operation of the dishwasher, such as the pump or the filter. So, with proper maintenance, its lifespan will be longer.

Tips and steps for cleaning the inside of a dishwasher

Enough of washing dishes over and over with a dirty dishwasher! Now is the time to get to work and leave it as new. Put excuses aside.

1. Remove food waste every day

Even if you do your best to remove food debris before washing dishes, pots, pans … some residue is bound to get into the dishwasher. Look closely and you will see. Given this, it is best to take a disposable kitchen paper to remove the pieces of meat, rice grains and seeds.

The starting point is to remove the blades and louvers to clean them completely. If you turn a blind eye, time will take its toll: the process will be more difficult because there will be particles in the injectors and the arms will not rotate normally. Focus on the door seals and rubbers.

Before putting the dishes in the dishwasher, try to remove some of their dirt with a disposable cloth.

2. Clean the door every week

No need to work on the dishwasher door every day. It is enough to do it in depth once a week. In this task, a microfiber cloth or a scourer for exclusive use will do.

This is the step by step:

  • Wet it and rub it on the inside of the door, which usually receives splashes full of residue and grease.
  • Also remember the edges of the sides and top.
  • Take the opportunity to check the detergent dispenser, as tablets tend to leave behind.

3. Don’t forget the filter!

As often as you clean the door, Maintain the filter to prevent clogging or clogging on the drain pump. You don’t need to call an expert for this.

You can remove it yourself and rinse it under a powerful stream of water with a neutral soap. To remove all the debris, a toothbrush or any other small model that you will rub gently will do.

Another alternative suggested by experts in the field is immerse the filter in a container with hot soapy water for one hour, As minimum. Afterward, scrub with a nylon brush, rinse, and reinstall it into place.

As we said at the beginning of the note, this procedure is essential to preserve the dishwasher in good condition. If the filter is clogged, no matter how much you clean, the dirt will stay spinning inside.

4. Clean the drain

Raise the lower plate rack and remove trapped food or other dirt. With this simple task, drainage and cleaning will improve. It is clear that the operability of the dishwasher will be favored.

5. Do a frequent deep cleaning

Maybe your schedule is full most of the time. We know that it can be quite difficult to clean the inside of a dishwasher thoroughly. But nevertheless, you must plan to achieve it once a month. Check out these product options.

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White vinegar

This is one of the most used household ingredients, as it bleaches and disinfects in a very efficient way. It is no coincidence that it is considered a household cleaner par excellence. It is an ecological, natural and economical choice.

Follow the steps that we share below:

  1. Empty the dishwasher.
  2. Apply vinegar to the inside walls, rubber, door, filter, internal ducts, and trays.
  3. Turn on the equipment and program it in the cycle with the highest temperature.
  4. About 10 minutes later, stop the dishwasher and pour in a cup of vinegar.
  5. Wait for the program to complete.

Some propose use citric acid in its powdered version to strengthen the effect of vinegar, removing the residues of fat and lime that are agglomerated. Fortunately, it is not toxic, but you must administer it with caution.

Sodium bicarbonate

An alternative route is sodium bicarbonate, ideal to reinforce the cleaning you have done with vinegar or any other item. How to do it? Well, very simple: sprinkle a little in the lower area, activate a maximum temperature cycle and that’s it.


Another cleaner that could not be left out of the list is bleach. Due to its concentration, it is best to use it in moderation. Now, a relevant aspect is that you verify the material of the door and the interior; if it’s stainless steel, for example, discard the bleach.

Machine cleaners

If you prefer, opt for a special machine cleaner, which will serve the same purpose. The disadvantage is that its price is higher and it is criticized by the defenders of the environingingment. If you decide on one, choose a good brand and follow the recommendations printed on the package label to the letter.

With the dishwasher with nothing inside, run a cleaning cycle. As a curious fact, there are dishwashers that have a program designed for this process. Otherwise, it activates a high temperature cycle.

Powdered juices

Yes, as you read it: powdered juices. Surely, at some point you heard that the contents of these envelopes are used to clean the toilet. Well, you can also try it to clean the inside of a dishwasher. Just place a few 4 or 5 tablespoons in the place where the detergent in tablets goes, turn it on and check the result.

6. Use lemon to inhibit bad odors

A frequent question of those who are in charge of cleaning the home is how to eliminate the unpleasant odors of humidity, grease and food. In this order of ideas, a trick that does not fail is to place 1/2 lemon on the upper baskets, always after cleaning. The ideal is to replace it every 2 or 3 days, before it spoils.

On the other hand, it is valid to try spreading a cup of baking soda inside the empty dishwasher. Let it sit overnight and, a day later, put a cup of vinegar on top, activate a hot cycle and you will notice the difference in aroma.

If you put half a lemon in the appliance and renew it every 3 days, you will achieve a pleasant aroma.

7. Remember personal protective equipment

Your safety is essential in the cleaning routine. Put on the gloves, in order to protect your hands from abrasion of the products. Also, put on an apron so as not to damage the clothes you are wearing.

Learn how to use the dishwasher correctly

In addition to cleaning the inside of a dishwasher with the best technique and with quality products, it is important that you consider a few more tips. At the end of the washing phase, do not remove the dishes right away; rather wait for them to drain for a while. It is also wise to leave the door open, preventing mold from growing on the filter or on the walls.

As for the type of kitchen items, it is preferable that you wash by hand those made of wood, cast iron and plastic. On the other hand, the order that you carry when placing the implements inside the dishwasher does matter: put everything in its place.

You can consider yourself an expert in cleaning one of the most valuable machines that we have in the home, since saves us time, effort, energy and water. Treat it as it deserves and you will have truly clean utensils.

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