It's Time to Clean Your Kitchen Dishwasher
Whether your dishwasher has a funky smell to it or not, a periodic cleaning should be at the top of your to-do list
What's making my dishwasher smell?
The culprit for a smelly dishwasher is usually one of two things, stagnant water or trapped food particles. Often times one is a result of the other. If there is a blockage that is leaving water or food it will usually smell like mildew or rotten eggs. The good thing is that you can fix it and it's easy! Follow the steps below to get you on your way to a smell-free dishwasher.
- Empty your dishwasherRemove all your dishes before you begin
- Check for food particles Your dishwasher has a food trap or filter at the bottom. It lets smaller, loose food through and traps anything that might cause a clog in your drain. Often times food can build up and slow the flow of water leaving the area moist. Remove your bottom dish rack and check the food trap / filter. Wipe any build-up away with warm water and a towel. If you can, remove the filter and wash it with warm water and then replace it. With the bottom rack removed, also check the sprayer arms for any food build up that would block the flow of water. Wipe them clean with hot water and a towel. When you're finished, replace your lower dish rack.
- Cycle 1: VinegarPour about 1 1/2 cup of white vinegar into a bowl and set it in the top rack. Alternatively, you can also just pour the vinegar directly into the bottom of your dishwasher. Set your dishwasher to run a heavy cycle and make sure you have not added any dishwasher detergent. The vinegar's acidic make up will work to both deoderize and clean your appliance.
- Cycle 2: Baking SodaWe all know how baking soda can keep your refrigerator and food smelling fresh, so why not use it for your dishwasher? Sprinkle about 1 1/2 cups of baking soda directly on the bottom of your dishwasher and let it go to work for you. Let it sit for at least an hour (preferrably overnight) before again running a heavy cycle.
- Check your resultsBy now your dishwasher should be clean and fresh smelling. Look for any loose food particles arond the seal of your door or filter. There shouldn't be any but if you had a really dirty dishwasher, you should easily be able to remove these with a towel or an old tooth brush.
Now that it is clean, let's talk about maintenance
You should check your food trap or filter every other week depending on how much you use your dishwasher. To help make sure food doesn't get trapped, rinse large chunks from your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Remember, your dishwasher is attached to your kitchen drain so make sure you run your garbage disposal with water before you start your dishwasher. This makes sure no food from your disposal runs back into your dishwasher.
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