How to Clean a Whirlpool Dishwasher


Dishwashers do heavy-duty cleaning in many households. Rarely do we consider cleaning something that scrubs other things for us. Simple steps to clean your Whirlpool dishwasher may extend its lifespan and keep your dishes sparkling. Frequency of cleaning will depend on how much you use the dishwasher.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towels
  • Toothbrush
  • Hot, soapy water
  • Sponge
  • Bon Ami, Soft Scrub or other gentle abrasive cleaner
  • Vinegar (1 cup)
  • Baking soda (1 cup)

Clean Your Dishwasher

  • Empty the dishwasher. Clean out any remaining food residue in the trap at the bottom of the unit with a paper towel.

  • Scrub the outer seal and edges with hot soapy water, using a toothbrush or other small scrubber.

  • Use gentle abrasive cleaner, such as SoftScrub or Bon Ami, to clean hard-to-clean grime.

  • Scrub around hinges and around buttons and dials on front panel with toothbrush.Go over all areas again with soft sponge and hot soapy water. Sponge should be damp, not dripping.

  • Remove the bottom dish rack and scrub the floor of the dishwasher. Remove any food stuck in corners. Use the sponge to scrub around the soap dispensers. Remove any residue.

  • Place 1 cup of white vinegar in a dishwasher-safe cup on the top rack. Sprinkle 1 cup of baking soda in the bottom of the dishwasher.

  • Run the dishwasher on a short cycle, using the hottest water setting. Use the dish drying setting as well to be sure the inside has been completely sanitized.

Tips & Warnings

  • Out of vinegar? You also can use powdered Tang drink or lemonade mix. Lemon juice will work well, too. Rust stains can be removed using a cleaner specifically for this purpose or powdered Tang drink mix. Sprinkle in the soap dispenser and in the bottom of the dishwasher. Run using short cycle, hottest water available.
  • Use the heat setting to completely dry your dishwasher to prevent rust. Use proper liquid when running your dishwasher. Dishwashing liquid is not the same as dishwasher liquid.


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