Skip to Content

How to Naturally Sanitize Your Dishwasher


When you open up your dishwasher, is there a funky smell coming from it?

Even though the dishwasher is known for cleaning dirty dishes, the appliance itself should not smell.

If your dishwasher does smell, then this means it needs to be cleaned — and we’re going to show you how!

dirty dishwasher

Steps to Clean Your Dishwasher Naturally

1) Focus on the Filter

One of the most important parts of the entire dishwasher is the filter. This is the piece that catches all of the food and debris that washes away from your dishes and prevents this debris from clogging your drain line. A funky-smelling dishwasher is usually caused by a filter that hasn’t been cleaned in a while.

Remove the filter from its housing and rinse off any attached food particles. Next, submerge it in hot water and allow it to soak for a half hour. For a better cleaning, add a half cup of white vinegar and a few dashes of dish soap to the hot water, Once the half hour is up, wipe down the filter and reinstall it into the dishwasher.

2) Cleaning the Pieces

Each piece inside of the dishwasher should be cleaned to ensure there’s no buildup of debris left inside of the dishwasher. Grab yourself a rag and a spray bottle filled with a solution of warm water and white vinegar.

Spray and wipe down each part of the dishwasher, including both sliding racks, the utensil holder, the filter’s housing, and most importantly — the gasket. The gasket is the seal of the dishwasher to ensure no water leaks out while it’s running. This area is prone to mold growth and should be thoroughly cleaned.

3) The Final Rinse

Once your dishwasher has been cleaned by hand, the last step is to run a cleaning cycle. With your dishwasher empty, run it on the hottest cycle to help remove any loosened debris during the cleaning process.

However, instead of adding soap or leaving the soap dispenser empty, add white vinegar to the cycle. Yes, vinegar again! And for those who want to give their dishwasher a pleasant smell after its cleaning, add a few drops of your favorite flavored essential oils to the vinegar you place in the dishwasher!

Cleaning your dishwasher is easy and you can do it with a natural ingredient you already have in your home!

If your dishwasher isn’t cleaning the way it should be or is seriously stinking up the place, know that Tri-City is here for all of your appliance and plumbing needs. Just give us a call and we’ll diagnose the problem and offer you the best way to fix it!