How to clean the dishwasher to extend its useful life

Georgina FiguerasMadrid Posted:

More than half of the homes in Spain have a dishwasher and they run it on average 280 times a year. We already told you that the washing machine does not wash itself; the dishwasher, thoroughly, either. Although the most modern ones come with self-cleaning programs, the truth is that they need human maintenance if we want the dishes to come out truly clean.

It is very common for residues of food and grease to accumulate, creating bad smell in the dishwasher and even favoring the appearance of blackened parts inside the dishwasher.

Performing regular cleaning is very important because, otherwise, the dishwasher will most likely start to fail or stop working. In other words, thoroughly cleaning the dishwasher is not something optional, but is part of the normal maintenance of this appliance. Did you know?

Step-by-step guide to cleaning the dishwasher

Try to follow these recommendations to keep your dishwasher in good condition:

-Every day: remove any bits of food that may have fallen. We recommend that before putting the dishes in the dishwasher you remove the solid remains with a piece of paper.

-Weekly: Clean the dishwasher door, the gasket and the filter, in this way you will avoid many in the drain pump. Also remember to clean the detergent dispenser.

-Monthly: Thoroughly clean the interior

How to clean the dishwasher filter

Keeping this filter clean is a priority. The OCU recommends disassembling it, removing it and rubbing it with a toothbrush to remove any remaining food that may have gotten stuck.

How to clean the dishwasher to extend its life useful

Another option for cleaning the dishwasher filter and removing all food debris is to soak it in hot, soapy water for about an hour, then clean it with a nylon bristle brush.

How to clean the salt tank

This seems more complicated, but it is necessary because the internal pipes of the dishwasher also accumulate limescale and grease after many washes. To keep them always clean we have different options. First of all, every 30 washes it is advisable to use the self-cleaning program that the most modern dishwashers usually already have.

The salt tank, which reduces the scale level of the water and acts as a softener, sometimes gets dirty because it is not closed properly or due to other circumstances.

It is advisable to clean this compartment once or twice a year to avoid mold and bad smells. A trick to access this difficult area is to use a bottle cleaner and also a little white vinegar.

How to clean the rotating arms of the dishwasher

The arms or blades also accumulate grease and dirt, so it is advisable to clean them at least every six months. You will be able to prevent lime deposits and other particles from clogging the injectors and you will make sure that the arms rotate well.

To clean them, the first thing you should do is take the arms out of the dishwasher. Put the blades under the faucet and use a brush or toothpick to remove the dirt. Do not forget to read the manufacturer's instruction book, which will surely give you indications on the best way to keep the kitchen ready.

If your dishwasher has blades that can be opened, clean the inside with soap and water, vinegar diluted in water, or a good degreaser. If they are the type that do not open, you can also choose to soak them in hot water and then rinse them with cold water to push the dirt out.

How to clean the drain and the dishwasher ducts

For this part we will have to resort to an artificial product every month or two. They are usually placed upside down on the bottom rack with the dishwasher empty. That's all!

Vinegar to clean the dishwasher

The all-powerful vinegar could not be missing in this article. It can be of great help to finish the cleanings. Also, for example, it can be very useful for when the car wash cycle takes a few minutes, attending to

How to clean the dishwasher with baking soda

Baking soda is also a cleaning classic that will come in handy in the dishwasher. Sprinkle it all over the bottom of the dishwasher. For example, use a glass as a measure and then put another glass of white vinegar. When it stops reacting, select a short program at maximum temperature.

Using caustic soda to clean the dishwasher

Caustic soda is used in many household and industrial products, as a cleaner and to unclog. As a softener, caustic soda is indicated

for cleaning barbecues, ovens, etc. The object can be immersed in a mixture of 3 or 4 liters of water and 200/500 g of caustic soda for 6 to 8 hours.

In contact with water, caustic soda releases high temperatures, becomes corrosive and can cause serious damage to our skin and eyes. Therefore, extreme care must be taken when handling this material.

Cleaning the dishwasher with bleach

Make sure that what you are going to clean is not stainless steel, so as not to spoil it, and not to mix it with vinegar. Bleach can be helpful if you find mold or mildew on your appliance.

Cleaning the dishwasher with ammonia

Ammonia is very versatile and on this occasion it 'helps us' to clean accumulated dirt inside the dishwasher. There are those who choose to pass a cloth with diluted ammonia. And another way that you can try is to pour a bottle of baking soda into the dishwasher and a good splash of ammonia and then program a long program at high temperature.

We hope these tips help you keep your dishwasher in good shape.