How to Disinfect Your Dishwasher


Although it may seem like an oxymoron, disinfecting the dishwasher once every two months is a good way to reduce bacteria buildup in hard-to-reach areas of the dishwasher. It's also a part of sound routine maintenance. Companies market dishwasher cleaners, but you can find inexpensive alternatives in your home.

Things You'll Need

  • Vinegar
  • Bleach
  • Abrasive sponge
  • Soft toothbrush
  • Remove dishes from the dishwasher. Remove the upper and lower dish racks. Inspect the drain. Wipe away any debris with a sponge. Pull out the filter and glass catch, if there is one. Dispose of debris, rinse those parts in warm, soapy water and replace.

  • Use vinegar to reduce soap buildup, and remove stains by scrubbing with an abrasive sponge. Pour 1 cup of vinegar down the drain as well.

  • Mix warm water and bleach at a ratio of 10 parts to 1. Use that solution with a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean crevices, corners and the seal along the outer edge of the door.

  • Use the bleach solution with an abrasive sponge to remove any deposits of grime on the dish racks and silverware compartment.

  • Replace the racks inside the dishwasher to their usual position. Pour a cup of bleach inside the dishwasher, then run it through a normal cycle.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you use ammonia or any cleaning product that contains it, do not mix it with bleach. The combination can form a hazardous toxic gas.

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