Even if you have a dishwasher, chances are you have a dish rack next to your sink as well. It's handy for those times when you just have a few dishes to wash, or the dishwasher is so full it can't fit another fork. Ironically, the dish rack is often dirty, despite only clean dishes being placed in it. Mold and mildew can grow when water puddles in the drip tray, and minerals can accumulate if you have hard water. For a truly clean kitchen, you must clean your dish rack, too.
Things You'll Need
- Dish detergent
- Bottle brush or old toothbrush
- Cotton swabs
Empty your dish rack and wipe up any puddles of standing water with a paper towel. (Don't use your dish sponge; this water is likely to be contaminated with bacteria and mold.)
Separate the parts of your dish rack (including unsnapping the utensil holder from the main rack, if possible). Wash each part (dish rack, utensil holder, and drip tray in that order) with dish detergent and a new sponge in hot running water. Scrub in between each rib of the dish rack. Reach into the bottom of the utensil holder so you can scrub it forcefully. If it is too narrow for your hand, use a bottle brush or old toothbrush to get the crud out. Then scrub the drip tray.
Check the tray to make sure all the visible dirt and stains are gone. Use a cotton swab to clean the corners if they are still dirty, or if there is grime in small crevices that you can't reach with a sponge.
Fill the sink with water, and add one tablespoon of bleach for each gallon of water the sink holds. Soak the parts of the dish rack in the sanitizing bleach solution for two minutes. Take them out and let them air dry on paper towels on the counter.
Tips & Warnings
- Do not use more bleach than recommended, since the dish rack comes into contact with surfaces that touch food.
- Don't use a steel-wool pad instead of a sponge; it will scratch up the plastic and make more hiding places for germs and dirt.
- The Good Housekeeping Household Encyclopedia; Carolyn E. Forté; 1993
- The Facts About Bleach; Bleach and Public Health
How to Clean Dish Racks
After taking the time to hand wash dishes, you want to ensure you are placing them on a clean dish rack for...
How to Wash a Plastic Dish Rack
Plastic dish racks normally are sold in one piece or in three-piece sets (drain board, rack and utensil holder). Plastic is a...
How to Clean a Bamboo Dish Rack
Bamboo has increased in popularity in recent years because it is clean, indestructible and it is a renewable resource. In fact, this...
The Easiest Way to Clean Oven Racks
Ovens today are easy to clean, since most come with a self-cleaning feature. If you like your oven racks to keep their...
How to Get White Residue Off Dishes
A dishwasher can save a lot of time in the kitchen, particularly if you have a large family or do a lot...
How to Prevent Mold on a Wood Drying Rack
Wooden drying racks can be economically and environmentally friendly items that can be used to dry clothes, food and other items. They...
How to Clean Mops & Brooms
Dirty brooms and mops will not clean effectively. In addition, germs and bacteria can thrive on a dirty mop, according to Allergy...