Deep Clean: Dishwasher Cleaning Tips

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Since you’re beginning to get in the habit of cleaning your kitchen every night, you can also get in the habit of unloading the dishwasher before you start heavily using the kitchen – either first thing in the morning or perhaps when you get home from work to start making dinner.

This habit is especially important today because we are going to clean the dishwasher. Yes, the machine that…cleans. We have self-cleaning ovens, so maybe someone will invent a self-cleaning dishwasher soon! Until then, let’s take some time to deep clean the dishwasher.

The best time to complete today’s task is right after you unload the dishwasher – or at least before you start loading it back up!


 Oxo Deep Clean Brush Set

 Plastic bag (optional, but it helps if you get grossed out by gunk)

 Paper towel

 Vinegar

 All-purpose cleaner

 Gloves (optional)


Press start on your timer and GO!


Let’s tackle the dishwasher today. Make sure to check with your manufacturer to find out their recommended method of cleaning.

Here is the deep clean dishwasher method I use:

1. Scrub the following areas of the dishwasher with the deep clean brush set:

 around the door frame (pay particular attention to the area at the bottom of the door hinges)

 in and around the detergent dispenser

 behind the silverware rack

 under the float valve (you know, that thing in the bottom of the dishwasher that just seems to be in the way!)

 around any plastic parts that connect to the bottom or top of the dishwasher

 inside the door vent (if it comes off, you may be surprised what you find in there!)

2. Wipe leftover gunk/debris with a paper towel. I’m easily grossed out by this – it makes me want to gag! – so I use a plastic grocery store bag as a barrier between my hand and the paper towel.

3. Clean around the door frame with all-purpose spray.

4. Pour a cup full of vinegar into the bottom of the dishwasher and run it on the hottest cycle possible to disinfect the dishwasher. If you try this, make sure your dishwasher doesn’t drain during the first few minutes of the cycle. If it does, just wait a few minutes, open the door and add the vinegar after the dishwasher drains.

NOTE: For a serious mold/mildew problem in a dishwasher (that doesn’t have a stainless steel interior), replacing the vinegar with bleach could be an option. However, I do know that you don’t want to put bleach in a dishwasher with a stainless steel interior!

Your assignment for today:

 Set your timer and work fast to deep clean your dishwasher.

 Continue working on Habit #2.

 Consider putting this on your Rainbow calendar.