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4 Steps to Take When Your Dishwasher Won’t Clean Properly

Posted on October 30, 2018 by oozle

You sit down to dinner and pour yourself a nice glass of cold water. It’s been a long day, and so you could definitely use the refreshment. You start to chug away but then look at the bottom. In horror, you realize that the glass isn’t clean as there’s gunk at the bottom. Disgusted, you stop drinking. You start wondering whether you accidentally unloaded the dishwasher before it went through its cleaning cycle or if the appliance is being faulty. Going with the second possibility, here are four steps to take if your dishwasher doesn’t seem to be cleaning properly.

1. Clean the Dishwasher

First and foremost, you have to take your appliance’s state of cleanliness into consideration. Check the spray arm, filter, and float. If possible, remove each piece before wiping them down with a wet rag to help get rid of any grime or food particles left over from previous wash cycles. Then it’s, time for a very simple two-part cleaning process.

Part 1: Vinegar

Fill a dishwasher-safe container (like a coffee mug or glass) with one measuring cup worth of white vinegar. Place it on the top rack in an upright position (typically, you’d place a cup upside down in a dishwasher but you want the liquid to stay). Then switch the appliance’s settings to a hot water cycle and run it.

Part 2: Baking Soda

Take one cup of baking soda and sprinkle it on the bottom of the dishwasher—it would be best to pull out the bottom rack before doing this—and then run it on a shorter hot water cycle.

Doing both of these steps will help eliminate grime and odors. It may also help get rid of any stains from the interior. HOWEVER, you do not want to do both steps at the same time. As you may remember from your elementary school volcano projects, combining vinegar and baking soda together can cause a foaming reaction which could possibly damage your dishwasher’s plumbing.

2. Check the Inlet Valve

Have you noticed an odd noise coming from your dishwasher when you run it? If so, that’s a huge sign that your inlet valve is broken and needs to be replaced. It plays a big role in keeping your dishwasher cleaning properly by controlling the flow of the water.

Even if you haven’t been hearing such noises it’s still important to check the inlet valve. The inlet valve screen could be clogged. Although you may be tempted to clean the screen, doing so could possibly damage it. Simply replace the part.

Remember, just because your dishwasher is causing you trouble that doesn’t mean it absolutely has to be replaced. If you think that it might need to be, however, make sure to seek dishwasher repair services first.

When should you replace your appliances?

3. Consider Your Detergentdishwashing pods

The real culprit of your dishwasher cleaning issues could end up just being the type of detergent that you use. Make sure that what you’re using is high quality but also take these points into consideration.

  • Use a powder-based detergent because that will dissolve faster than the gel or tablet types.
  • If you have hard water, add a little more (but not too much) detergent than typically required.
  • Keep the detergent dispenser cup clean.

4. Call a Professional

If none of these steps solved the problem for you, call a professional who specializes in appliance repair. At ProServ, we know appliances! We understand the anatomy of a dishwasher and will be able to analyze the situation, locate the problem, and fix it.

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