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How to Clean Your Dishwasher with Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar in a non-labeled bottle on a table with apples

Dishwashers are your friend. They do the dirty jobs you do not like to do. When dishes get too gross, you just place them in the racks, shut the door, and turn the appliance on. In a little over an hour approx., your gross-looking dishes are white as snow or just clean.

However, your appliance can’t do it all. It needs a little help from you. When hard water starts to leave mineral deposits, the dishwasher relies on you to descale it so it can do its job as you want it to.

To learn how to descale, just continue to read our article. It gives you those instructions and more.

How to Descale Dishwasher with Vinegar

Heating element sitting in the top of a pile of limescale

It will take a little work to descale your dishwasher but at least it is not as dirty or messy job as cleaning up some plates and pots with leftovers on them. Here are the steps to follow in order to descale your dishwasher right:

Step 1 – Gather Your Supplies

You will need a toothbrush, screwdriver, dishwashing liquid, vinegar, baking soda, and a bowl.

Step 2 – Prepare the Dishwasher

Make sure the power is off and that is just temporary. Then empty the dishwasher of dishes, pots, racks, and other loose items.

Step 3 – Pull the Filter

You will need to give it a good cleaning and now is the best time as everything is out of your way. Use a toothbrush, running water, and dishwashing liquid to get it nice and clean

Step 4 – Vinegar’s Turn

Replace the racks, the filter and pour some vinegar in a dishwasher-safe bowl. There is no need to cover it and then place the bowl on the top rack. Run one regular cycle with the vinegar inside the dishwasher.

Step 5 – Now it is Time for the Baking Soda

Once the vinegar wash is over, open the dishwasher door and sprinkle some baking soda over the floor of the appliance. You can be a bit generous as baking soda does not harm anything. After sprinkling, run a cleaning cycle to get the odors out.

Step 6 – Air Out the Appliance

Leave the door open overnight to let the interior dry and air out. This should allow any remaining odor to vacate the appliance.

How to Prevent Mineral Deposit Build Ups

Man standing next to open commercial grade dishwasher

If you live in a hard water region, mineral deposits and their build-up are a fact of life. The best way to prevent this from happening is to schedule regular cleaning of your dishwasher.

Once every two months or even once a month should do the trick. Regular cleaning also helps your sprayer arms from clogging. To get those little holes clean, you can use a toothpick or a cake tester. Those long metal trips will get inside those holes very easily.

Or you can use a water softening product that is safe for dishes and dishwashers. Check your supermarket’s shelves to see if they are selling this type of product. It will help keep your dishwasher from becoming clogged and help your filter last longer.

Can We Use Apple Cider to Clean the Dishwasher?

Clear mug of apple cider with cinnamon sticks and cut apples on a dark wood table

Apple cider, the drink is not recommended as it does not have the same qualities as Apple Cider vinegar. The latter product is very useful in helping to keep your dishwasher clean as well as germ and mold-free.

There are two ways to use apple cider vinegar. The first is as mentioned above, just pour a little bit in a bowl and let the dishwasher do the work. The second is to mix about a cup of vinegar in a pail with a gallon of water.

Then take a cloth, brush or other cleaning tool and thoroughly scrub your appliance. When you are done with the vinegar, run a cycle with baking soda so you do not have to endure that vinegar odor.

After you have finished cleaning, reward yourself with a nice cool glass of Apple Cider drink. You will have earned it.

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