How to Clean Your Dishwasher Like a Pro

Cleaning dishwasher

Cleaning your dishwasher might seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually easier than you think. With proper maintenance and regular deep cleaning, you can keep your dishwasher running smoothly for many years to come.

In this guide, we’ll give you step-by-step instructions on how to clean your dishwasher like a pro. We’ll cover both routine maintenance and deep cleaning methods, so you can keep your dishwasher in top shape and ensure that your dishes come out sparkling clean every time.

Why Cleaning Your Dishwasher is Important

You might be wondering, why do I need to clean my dishwasher? After all, it’s a machine designed for cleaning. But over time, food particles, grease, and soap scum can build up inside your dishwasher and cause it to become less effective. This can result in dishes that come out dirty or with spots, and even unpleasant odors.

Regularly cleaning your dishwasher can help prevent these issues and ensure that it continues to function properly. It can also extend the lifespan of your dishwasher, saving you money in the long run.

Routine Maintenance

To keep your dishwasher running smoothly, it’s important to perform routine maintenance. This includes wiping down the exterior and interior surfaces, cleaning the filter, and checking for any clogs.

Wipe Down Exterior Surfaces

Using a damp cloth and mild detergent, wipe down the outside of your dishwasher to remove any dirt or grime. Pay special attention to the controls, door handle, and edges where food particles can accumulate.

Clean the Interior

Remove any large food particles or debris from the bottom of your dishwasher, and then wipe down the interior with a damp cloth. You can also use a vinegar solution (equal parts water and white vinegar) to remove any stubborn stains or buildup on the walls and racks.

Remove and Clean the Filter

The filter is an important part of your dishwasher, as it traps food particles and prevents them from clogging the drain. To clean it, remove the bottom rack and unscrew or pop out the filter. Rinse it under hot water to remove any debris, and then replace it.

Check for Clogs

If your dishes aren’t coming out clean, there may be a clog in the spray arms or nozzles. Use a toothpick or small brush to remove any buildup and ensure that water can flow freely.

Deep Cleaning Methods

In addition to routine maintenance, it’s important to deep clean your dishwasher every few months. This will help remove any built-up grime and keep your dishwasher running at its best.

Run a Cycle with Vinegar

Fill a dishwasher-safe cup or bowl with white vinegar and place it in the top rack of your empty dishwasher. Run a hot water cycle to help dissolve any buildup and remove odors.

Use Baking Soda for Stubborn Stains

For tougher stains, sprinkle baking soda on the bottom of your dishwasher and run a hot water cycle. This will help loosen and remove any buildup or stains.

Clean the Spray Arms

Remove the bottom rack and check the spray arms for any clogs or debris. If necessary, use a toothpick or small brush to clean out the spray nozzles.

Sanitize with Bleach

To disinfect your dishwasher, add 1 cup of bleach to an empty dishwasher and run a hot water cycle. Be sure to rinse it out afterwards to avoid any lingering bleach smell.


Regular maintenance and deep cleaning are essential for keeping your dishwasher in top shape. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your dishwasher continues to function properly and that your dishes come out clean every time.