Maintaining the inside of dishwashers isn’t high on To-Do lists since they do a great job cleaning themselves while they run a load. Sometimes though there may be a few rust stains, detergent or mineral buildup or even an off-smell that you want to get rid of.
Here are few quick & easy tips for freshening things up.
- Using citric acid is a popular trick, here’s how you do it: Fill the detergent cup with 2 tablespoons of powdered citric acid (some even recommend just filling the soap dispenser with powdered Orange Tang since it contains citric acid) and run through a full cycle. This is especially good for removing rust spots (you may have to do more than one treatment).
- To remove buildup of minerals or stains, run a full cycle with vinegar, here’s how you do it: Start the appliance and once it fills up with hot water, pour in a cup or two of regular household vinegar. Turn it back on and let it finish its cycle. Another method is to set a bowl filled with 3 cups of vinegar on the bottom rack when the machine is empty. Let run for a full cycle.
- Borax or Baking Soda Freshener: After dishes are done for the night and the appliance is dry, sprinkle a layer of Borax or baking soda on the bottom. Close it and let it sit overnight. The next day take a damp sponge and scrub the powder into the inside walls and door. Remove most of the powder then run a full cycle on empty to remove all traces of the powder. Another method to freshen up is to toss in a cup of baking soda when the machine is empty then run it on the rinse cycle.
If the appliance smells, you could have food trapped in the bottom filter. After running a load, remove the bottom rack and look for any crud trapped in the filter on the bottom. If there’s food trapped in the holes, you’ll need to remove it and clean it. Also look around the gasket, you could have an accumulation of gunk in there that needs to be washed up.
Remember: Unplug appliances before removing or handling parts.