As handy as dishwashers are at cleaning all of your dirty dishes, they do not clean themselves. While it seems odd to have to clean something that cleans other things, it needs to be done to prevent mildew and mold. We’ll show you how to clean a moldy dishwasher to remove mildew and prevent harmful mold from taking hold.
The inside of a dishwasher is damp, dark, and the perfect breeding ground for fungal growth. Leftover food gunk in the drain and bottom of the dishwasher doesn’t help matters.
If not cleaned regularly, a dishwasher can grow mold that may be harmful to you and your family. Therefore, the dishwasher must be cleaned at least once a month using a proper cleaning method.
How to Clean a Dishwasher with Mold
Performing regular cleaning maintenance is necessary for removing soap scum, food particles, and grime that accumulate on the inside of the dishwasher and prevent mold growth. If you already have a moldy dishwasher, we have several cleaning recipes to help you eliminate the problem.
Removing Mold in Dishwasher
If you have noticed a mildew smell in the dishwasher and mold spots, you can clean it using regular white vinegar. The following is one of the most natural methods for removing mold in dishwasher, and it requires no elbow grease.
Vinegar Dishwasher Cleaning
Fill a dishwasher safe container with one cup of vinegar and place it on the top rack of the empty dishwasher. Close the door and run the hot water cycle. The acidity of the white vinegar works to remove mold growth and mildew inside the washer.
How to Get Rid of Black Mold in Dishwasher
Baking soda is an excellent tool for cleaning in the kitchen. It acts as both a mild scouring agent and an alkaline substance. The following steps show you how to get rid of black mold in dishwasher while eliminating any foul odors.
Begin by removing the top rack and bottom dish rack of the dishwasher. Sprinkle baking soda on the bottom of the wet dishwasher and let it sit overnight.
The next morning, use a toothbrush to brush the baking soda into the crevices of the washer, as well as other areas of concern such as the door gasket, spray arm, and door seal of the dishwasher door.
If the spots don’t seem to respond just to the baking soda, add a few spritzes of vinegar to the areas to make a dynamite cleaning solution for black mold. Let it sit for up to half an hour. Close the door and run the washer on its hottest wash cycle. Repeat the treatment afterward if needed.
Thorough Deep Cleaning of the Dishwasher
The following natural dishwasher cleaner is ideal for deep cleaning the dishwasher to remove all traces of food gunk, mold, and mildew. This particular method is a little more time consuming than others, but it does get the job done.
Begin by filling the kitchen sink with dish soap and hot water. Remove both trays from the dishwasher and place the utensil holder into the soapy water to scrub clean with the sponge. Inspect the dishwasher drain area for clogged food.
Use a toothpick to remove any food debris or gunk from the sprayer armholes. Pour the vinegar into a spray bottle. Sprinkle baking soda onto the bottom of the washer and then spray the area with the vinegar.
Use the sponge to scrub the bottom, sides, and inside the door of the washer. Use an old toothbrush to clean around the dishwasher filter, gasket, and other crevices where the sponge won’t work.
After you clean all areas of the dishwasher, replace the racks and utensil holder. Run the washer on its hottest cycle to finish the cleaning process.
Use this same tactic as one of the best ways to get mildew smell out of a dryer, too. After cleaning, run the dryer on a hot setting for about ten minutes so that it dries completely.
Cleaning a Moldy Dishwasher the Easy Way
This is a two-step cleaning method that uses the power of baking soda and white vinegar to work together to kill mold, mildew, and bacteria. The best thing about this method is that it requires no scrubbing.
Place a microwave-safe container filled with vinegar onto the top rack in the dishwasher. Close the door and run a full cycle on the hottest setting. After the first cycle has completed, open the door and sprinkle baking soda onto the bottom of the dishwasher.
Run another cycle on the hottest setting. After the two separate cleaning cycles have competed, your dishwasher should be mold-free.
Add vinegar and baking soda to your washing machine as one of the ways to clean mold from your washer. Run the machine on a hot water setting with these ingredients (and no laundry) to eliminate smells and mold spots.
How to Remove Mold from a Dishwasher
If you have a particularly bad problem with mold growth in your dishwasher, you can pull out the big guns and use bleach. This method should not be used in a stainless steel washer, nor should it be used too often. This cleaning method is also a great way to clean mold from washing machine.
Cleaning a Moldy Dishwasher with Bleach
Do not use this method if your washer has a stainless steel interior. Remove both of the racks and place a dishwasher safe container with one cup of bleach onto the bottom of the dishwasher.
Run one full cleaning cycle on the hottest setting. Doing this should kill any germs and mold that have accumulated in the washer.
How to Prevent a Moldy Dishwasher
While we recommend regular cleanings of your dishwasher, there are several things you can do in-between cleaning techniques to prevent mold and mildew from making your dishwasher their new home.
Moldy Dishwasher Prevention
One of the first steps that you can take to prevent the build-up of mold and mildew in your dishwasher is to leave the washer door ajar between washing. Doing this allows for airflow in the damp environment, preventing the ideal breeding ground for mold growth.
If you have had a particularly heavy load of extra dirty dishes, run a cleaning cycle with dishwashing detergent in the empty dishwasher. The dishwasher is often treated like a garbage disposal. Dishes that are caked with food and not appropriately rinsed can clog up the dishwasher.
Running an extra load without dishes can help to clean out any leftover food debris and prevent mold growth from starting. Make sure to run a cleaning solution such as vinegar or baking soda through a regular cleaning cycle once per month. Doing this will not only keep your dishwasher clean but prevent mold from taking hold.
The first step to eliminating mold from your dishwasher is to prevent it in the first place by following a few simple steps. Fortunately, there are several different methods to choose from if you’ve already crossed that line and have a moldy dishwasher.
Now that cleaning the dishwasher can be checked off your to-do list, what’s next? How about learning how to make homemade dish soap?
Knowing how to clean a moldy dishwasher not only gets that washer clean but is beneficial to the health of the ones you love, so why not share our dishwasher cleaning ideas with your friends and family on Pinterest?