Did you know that your dishwasher saves you two weeks of free time every year? In return for this valuable service, do not hesitate to maintain it with care. You have everything to gain: it will work longer, its performance will remain optimal, and you will save energy. It’s good for you… and for the environment!
Good reasons to maintain your dishwasher: performance, economy and durability.
A well-maintained dishwasher lasts longer. The reason for this is simple: it is to fight the accumulation of residues and fats that end up reducing the performance of the device. Not to mention tartar which gradually forms white deposits on the walls. If you notice a drop in wash quality, yellowing of the walls or persistent bad smells… it’s time to act. Properly cared for, your dishwasher will work better and use less energy. Your budget will thank you, and so will the planet.
Before first use, a few rules to follow to optimize your device:
The manual tells you precisely the settings and preparations to be made during installation. For the dishwasher to give you complete satisfaction, pay attention to a few essential points. Start by checking the setting of the water softener, which must correspond to the hardness of the water used. You can consult your water bill, which tells you the lime content of the water in your municipality, or ask the services concerned directly. Also consider fill the salt tank (after filling it with water, load it with salt), as well as the rinse aid tank (it is he who makes the dishes shine and dry without streaks).
Is your dishwasher new? Take the opportunity to develop some good cleaning habits.
Install a small routine of daily cleaning will prove to be very useful for the maintenance of your dishwasher. A few minutes are enough, after each wash, to clean the internal walls and the external surface using a soft cloth soaked in white vinegar. Prefer the joints, which get dirty more quickly.
For effective washing, both of the dishes and the dishwasher, the eco program at 50 °C is the most suitable. If you use it regularly, maintenance will be easier.
Occasionally, at least three times a year, run your dishwasher empty with a complete cycle at maximum temperature. This high temperature washing neutralizes the development of bacteria and unwanted mold.
Finally, once a month, take a few minutes to deep cleaning of your dishwasher. Start by removing the filter and the grid for cleaning with soapy water. Then run an empty wash cycle, according to your usual programme. The little trick is to have poured a glass of white vinegar into the tank before the cycle. Once the vacuum wash is complete, wipe the blades, seal and exterior surfaces lightly with a sponge.
And don’t forget to leave the dishwasher door ajar between two washes; the faster it dries, the less bacteria you will have… and unwanted odors. If sometimes you have to close the door, here is a little trick to eliminate bad smells: just put a little baking soda, or half a lemon, directly in the tank.
If your dishwasher is very dirty, a major cleaning is required.
Allowing a little time for this major cleaning is worth it: your dishwasher may regain all its performance!
– First of all, unplug your device. You can then withdraw all removable elements (blades, carriages, etc.), respecting the instructions in your manual. To wash them, a simple washing-up product will suffice. But if they are very dirty, use black soap, whose degreasing power is well established. Wash, brush, flush out dirt in small holes and crevices.
– Interior the dishwasher also deserves a facelift: clean the tub with a sponge soaked in white vinegar.
– Remove the filter from the dishwasher: you may discover food residue or pieces of broken dishes. Clean it as well as floor of dishwasher. Carefully remove all waste accumulated.
– Wipe the sponge over the contours of the door and its seal (be careful not to rub the seal too strongly, you could damage it).
– Reassemble the removable elements.
Last step of this great cleaning: launch an empty wash cycle after pouring a glass of white vinegar or lemon juice into the tank.
What parts of your dishwasher require regular cleaning?
The filter. If it is dirty, the washing of your dishes will suffer the consequences. It is at the bottom of the tank. Unscrew it after each wash and rinse it, then give it a light brush or sponge (soaked in washing-up liquid), and you can screw it back in place.
The washing arms. Whether they are called spray arms, blades or spray nozzles, the main thing is to prevent their little holes from getting clogged. If hot water can no longer be sprayed properly, your dishes will be less clean. Consult the instructions for disassembling these arms and equip yourself with a toothpick or a pointed object (or a wire if they are too small) to carefully unclog the small holes. Rinse the arms and put them back. This operation should be repeated once or twice a year.
The compartments. Remove all removable baskets and racks for a vinegar wash. Do not hesitate to play with the toothpick to evacuate the stuck dirt.
To give new life to the door, take a cloth soaked in white vinegar. A toothbrush will be useful to reach the accumulated waste at the bottom of the door. To clean gasket door, a damp sponge or soft cloth is sufficient.
Tank cleans simply by a vacuum cycle with a glass of white vinegar.
On a daily basis, use your dishwasher correctly to make it last.
It was designed to wash your dishes…and nothing else! Do not wash your decorative objects or children’s toys in it, at the risk of seriously damaging it. As for the dishes, the ideal is to fully charge the device before starting a wash cycle. But be careful not to overload it with dishes that are too tight, or run it half full – unless you have a half-load function. Nothing should interfere with the rotation of the upper arm.
It is recommended to insert the crockery in the compartments provided, according to their use, with the tips of the cutlery facing upwards (except for sharp knives). It will help you to distribute the dishes on the trolleys ; a well-balanced load is energy gained.
If small objects fall to the bottom, it is absolutely necessary to recover them before starting a new cycle. And before inserting new crockery, remember to remove the labels: avoid unnecessary waste!
White deposits, bad smells, yellowing… How to get rid of them?
All these disadvantages are linked to a lack of maintenance. But rest assured, every problem has a simple and effective solution.
The white deposit is not a fatality. Over the course of the washes, lime deposits on the walls of your dishwasher. In general, the hardness of the water is the cause, but it can also come from too low a dosage of washing-up liquid or too little regenerating salt. To eliminate this white deposit, it is therefore necessary to fill the tank with regenerating salt according to the hardness of the water in your municipality (and the doses indicated in the instructions). Remember to renew the salt level regularly. To overcome limescale, the best descaler is still white vinegar. Pour three liters into the tank and run it empty; your dishwasher will regain all its shine!
To remove bad odors, which are linked to mold and bacteria, regular cleaning is sufficient. Leaving the door ajar between two cycles will allow faster drying. From time to time, run an empty cycle with a good dose of cleaner. Finish by cleaning the internal walls with a very effective cocktail of baking soda and lemon juice.
yellowing also comes from tartar. Take your magic formula of lemon and baking soda, added to hot water, to rejuvenate the walls.
The most natural products are the best.
To properly maintain your dishwasher, there is no need to ruin yourself with expensive products. Here is a list of natural products; extremely efficient, they are also better for the environment.
white vinegar is the star of the dishwasher. It eliminates tartar, reduces grease and disinfects, while bringing a small note of freshness. It can be used for cleaning, but also as a rinsing liquid. Baking soda is excellent for preventing the formation of limescale. Citric acid (or just lemon juice) works wonders for descaling and shine, especially in combination with baking soda. black soap may be useful for very fatty items. With these simple and natural products, the maintenance of your dishwasher will have a carbon footprint reduced to a minimum.