How to clean a dishwasher in 3 easy steps

Regularly cleaning the inside of your dishwasher is an easy way to help prevent odors and the build-up of detergent and minerals. Whether you use a dishwasher cleaning tablet or clean your dishwasher with vinegar and baking soda, repeat the following steps every 30 days to keep your dishwasher running efficiently and your family’s dishes sparkling clean.

How to clean a dishwasher with affresh® Dishwasher Cleaner
How to clean a dishwasher with vinegar and baking soda

Cleaning a dishwasher with an affresh® tablet

How to clean a dishwasher with affresh® Dishwasher Cleaner

affresh® Dishwasher Cleaner is specifically formulated to help remove limescale and mineral build-up. Plus, you can use it while running a normal load, helping to descale glassware and dishes. Descaling removes limescale, which is the build-up that causes cloudiness on glassware.

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Step 1: Clear the filter
Clear the filter at the bottom of the dishwasher of any food bits or debris like glass, popcorn kernels or small pieces of paper. If applicable, remove and clean the filter to clear any clogs or other obstructions. Keep in mind that some filters cannot be removed—check your Use & Care guide for specific instructions.

Dishwasher tablet icon

Step 2: Place dishwasher cleaner tablet
If you’re cleaning without dishes, place 1 tablet in the detergent tray. You can add a second tablet if there’s a lot of build-up.

If you’re cleaning with dishes, put 1 tablet in the bottom of the dishwasher (under the bottom rack) and use your normal detergent in the main detergent tray.

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Step 3: Run cycle
No matter whether you’re washing with or without dishes, run a normal wash cycle.

Cleaning tip: Outside of the dishwasher looking dingy? Just wipe down the surface with a damp cloth. To polish stainless steel exteriors, be sure to use cleaners or wipes specifically formulated for stainless steel, and never use abrasive cleaners or pads that could scratch the surface.

The bottom interior of a dishwasher

How to clean a dishwasher with vinegar and baking soda

If you don’t have affresh® Dishwasher Cleaner and need to clean a smelly dishwasher, you can also use vinegar and baking soda. Just remember to take out any dishes before you start.

Clear filter icon

Step 1: Clear the filter
Clear the filter at the bottom of the dishwasher of any food bits or debris like glass, popcorn kernels or small pieces of paper. If applicable, remove and clean the filter to clear any clogs or other obstructions. Keep in mind that some filters cannot be removed—check your Use & Care guide for specific instructions.

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Step 2: Add white vinegar
Pour 2 cups (500 mL) of white vinegar into a glass measuring cup or other dishwasher-safe container and place upright in the lower rack. Run a normal cycle with the heat dry option turned off. Do not use detergent.

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Step 3: Add baking soda
After the cycle with vinegar is complete, sprinkle 1 cup of baking soda in the bottom of the dishwasher and run a hot water cycle. That’s all it takes for a clean, fresh-smelling dishwasher!

Cleaning tip: You can use either white or diluted apple cider vinegar. However, distilled white vinegar is preferable since it doesn’t have a coloring agent that could stain surfaces.