With the dinners and parties this holiday season, your dishwasher will surely be one of the busiest and most frequently used appliance in your home. Here’s how you can ensure it runs smoothly all the time.
With the number of parties and dinners that come with the holidays, you’re sure to have a lot of dishes, utensils, and pans to clean. Here’s where your helpmate, the dishwasher, comes to your rescue.
To ensure that your dishwasher runs smoothly and functions at its best, here are cleaning and maintenance tips you must consider:
Always keep the dishwasher clean.
The first step in ensuring that your dishwasher is in its tip-top shape is through cleaning it on a regular basis. Keeping your dishwasher clean won’t only result in cleaner dishes, but it’ll also prevent the buildup of mold, bacteria, and fungi in your appliance.
An easy way to freshen up and clean your dishwasher is by using white vinegar. Just run your empty dishwasher on a normal cycle with a cup of white vinegar. Doing this will clean out all the gunk and food particles while keeping the dishwasher fresh-smelling.
When cleaning your dishwasher, don’t forget to deep clean and sanitize the spray arm holes, all the crevices in the filter, door seals, and dishwasher trap as well.
Use the right detergent.
Cheap detergents can be tempting to buy because they’re a buck or two cheaper than the quality ones. However, cheaper detergents won’t be as effective in doing the cleaning. More than that, they can leave sticky residues in your dishwasher’s valves too.
For a quality and clean wash, use quality detergent or those recommended by your dishwasher’s manufacturer. It’s best to follow your manufacturer’s instructions.
Avoid overcrowding your machine.
Running a full load can make the most out of the water, detergent, and energy used. But, running a full load isn’t the same as overcrowding your dishwasher. If you cram too many dishes at just one load, you’ll most likely end up with still unclean and soiled dishes.
To make the most out of your load and cycle without overcrowding your dishwasher, occupy all the space but make sure to check whether there’s still enough room for air and water to flow between your dishes. The dishes shouldn’t be tightly pressed together.
Check the temperature.
To ensure that your dishes are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized, you must always make sure that the water heater temperature in your dishwasher is optimal. The best temperature for getting your dishes clean ranges from 120 to 125ºF. Don’t go beyond that.
Setting the water temperature to one that is hotter than the recommended one won’t be helpful in cleaning your dishes. Because of the too hot temperature, the water will most likely dry up even before it has time to actually wash and clean your dishes properly.
Scrape food chunks before loading.
Adding dishes to the dishwasher as is, with the chunks of food included, can clog your appliance. They can also make it harder for your dishwasher to do its work. To avoid such, make sure to scrape off any food chunks before putting dishes in the dishwasher.
By practicing scraping, you can reduce the particles stuck on the dishes and your dishwasher once the cycle is finished. It can give you a better clean as well.
Choose the correct cycle.
You might be thinking that using a shorter, lighter cycle can save you time and water. No, that isn’t true. Doing this won’t give your dishes a thorough clean, especially the super dirty ones. It will only make you redo the whole cycle, thus, costing you more.
Use the cycle appropriate to the dishes you’re washing, i.e., how much they are soiled, item type, etc. For more information about the dishwasher cycles, read this.
Follow the above tips and solutions to make sure your dishwasher runs smoothly, especially when you need it most. You can’t afford to have a problematic dishwasher during the holidays, right?