A clean and fresh-smelling dishwasher will not only do a much better job of getting your dishes clean and sparkling but also be more pleasant to use. The methods listed here can help you remove the source of unpleasant odors in your dishwasher. As a general rule, aim to keep your dishwasher itself clean and dry. After each time your machine runs, leave the door open for a few minutes to allow the interior to air dry. A foul odor from your machine can be a sign that repairs are needed, so if you’re concerned, don’t hesitate to contact CS Appliance Service. We can answer your questions to help you determine whether a service call is needed. For now, read on for helpful tips on reducing and eliminating dishwasher odors.

Use natural odor neutralizers first.

Place a small cup right side-up on the top dishwasher rack and fill it with white vinegar. Run your usual dishwasher cycle with the otherwise empty dishwasher. You can try filling a cup with lemon slices instead. The citric acid in the lemon helps break down food particles and grease and provides a fresh-smelling scent that lingers once the cycle is over. For a more hands-on option, mix enough drops of water into a bowl of baking soda to form a paste. Rub this inside the interior walls of your dishwasher with a sponge. Let sit about 20 minutes, then rinse off with a clean sponge and bucket of hot water. If these methods don’t work, try a commercial dishwasher cleaner and run it on the hottest cycle.  

Clean your dishwasher on a regular basis.

In most cases, you will want to give the interior of your dishwasher a good scrubbing at least once a month. Mix up a solution of half hot water, half vinegar (or your preferred all-purpose cleaner) and scrub the interior with a sponge. Make sure to also wipe down the inside of the door and the strips where the door meets up with the dishwasher frame, areas where food residue can accumulate unnoticed.

Don’t forget the rubber door gasket.

There is a rubber gasket that runs underneath the door of most dishwashers, helping to seal the door shut. It can be a trap for grease and food particles and eventually this build-up can cause nasty odors. Be sure to wipe this gasket down well with a spray cleaner and paper towels on a regular basis to remove any build-up.

Pre-rinse your dishes, if you don’t already.

If you usually just scrape your dishes into the trash before putting them directly into the dishwasher racks and you’ve noticed a build-up of food or grease, consider pre-rinsing the dishes lightly instead. This does not mean washing the dishes off entirely until they’re spotless. Instead, just give them a quickly rinse under running water. Not all dishwashers are created equal, and for some older models, it is harder for them to clean efficiently. This may give the dishwasher a helping hand to perform better.

When to call in the professionals

If you’re noticing not only foul odors, but persistently poor performance from your dishwasher in getting your dishes clean despite these methods, consider calling CS Appliance Service. Issues like these could be caused by blocked filter screens, poorly installed hoses, or even an issue with your sink. At CS Appliance Service, we’ve worked on many dishwashers and can figure out the problem and the best solution. Call us at (781) 953-9600 for any questions or concerns you may have about your dishwasher or other home appliances. For more tips and tricks, check us out on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/CSApplianceService/.