How to Maintain Your Dishwasher

How to Maintain Your Dishwasher
  • Opening Intro -

    Dishwashers are a frequently used major appliance, and are typically turned on at least once daily.

    Quite easily after three years of use your dishwasher can go through its entire cleaning cycle more than 1,000 times.


That constant use can take its toll on this popular kitchen appliance, wearing it out faster if you do not perform common maintenance.

Common problems with dishwashers are worn or cracked hoses, connections that you should replace on a regular basis and especially when a leak has been detected. Read on for some tips on how to maintain your dishwasher kitchen appliance.

1. Keep it running. Use your dishwasher regularly and all the parts will get used regularly. Just as frequent use can take its toll, infrequent use can contribute to food and scum build up.

2. Observe the spinning arms. Up and down, your dishwasher features a pair of spinning arms that spray hot water to clean your dishes. These arms can get loose and should be tightened on occasion. Also, the sprayers can become clogged. You will need a scrub brush, cotton swabs and tweezers to remote gunk build up.

3. Wipe it down. Take a damp cloth or a sponge and run it along the inside perimeter of your dishwasher and along the bottom of the door. Go to the base of the dishwasher and clean up the residue. You’re looking for scum and food particulate build up that hasn’t completely drained with each cleaning.

4. Check the drain. At the base of the dishwasher is a drain that is protected by a grate. Wastewater will ease through that opening, but it does not take much to clog it. Pieces of broken glass, a utensil, a piece of a dish or any other object can thwart drainage. Put on a pair of gloves and carefully run your fingers around the perimeter to detect and remove obstructions.

5. Cycle it through empty. Once your dishwasher has been wiped down, cleaned and all obstructions have been removed, run it through its cleaning cycle empty. Follow Jillee’s instructions on using white vinegar and even bleach to give your dishwasher a thorough cleaning, to give the interior of this appliance sparkle.

Care Instructions

If you still have your dishwasher’s maintenance care book, refer to that for the best methods for maintaining your unit. Properly maintained, your dishwasher should last an average of nine years according to a survey conducted by the National Association of Home Builders.

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Categories: Kitchen and Dining

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Auto Trends Magazine", an online publication. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and weblogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".