Clean Dishwasher with Vinegar (Easy Step by Step Process)

If you have a dishwasher at home, you know how much time and effort it saves you in washing dishes. But, have you noticed that your dishwasher has started smelling funky, or the dishes aren’t coming out as clean as they used to? It could be a sign that your dishwasher needs a deep cleaning. A clean dishwasher will keep your dishes sparkling clean and running efficiently for years to come. In this article, we will discuss how to clean your dishwasher with vinegar.

What Supplies do you need to Clean Dishwasher with Vinegar?

Before we get into the cleaning process, let’s make sure you have everything you need.

  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • A toothbrush or scrub brush
  • A clean cloth
  • Optional: Dishwasher cleaner tablets

Why Use Vinegar

White vinegar is an excellent natural cleaner that is safe and inexpensive. It can be used to clean various household appliances, including your dishwasher. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which helps break down mineral buildup, grease, and soap scum.

Step by Step Guide to Clean Your Dishwasher with Vinegar

Now let’s dive into the step-by-step process of cleaning your dishwasher with vinegar.

Step 1: Empty Your Dishwasher

Start by removing all dishes and racks from your dishwasher. Check the drain and remove any large food particles or debris.

Step 2: Sprinkle Baking Soda

Sprinkle a cup of baking soda on the bottom of your dishwasher. Baking soda is a natural deodorizer that will help absorb any unpleasant odors.

Step 3: Pour Vinegar

Pour a cup of white vinegar into a dishwasher-safe bowl or cup and place it on the top rack of your dishwasher. Run a hot water cycle on your dishwasher.

Step 4: Scrub the Edges and Corners

While the cycle is running, take a toothbrush or scrub brush and gently scrub the edges, corners, and hard-to-reach areas of your dishwasher.

Step 5: Wipe Down the Interior

Once the cycle is complete, use a clean cloth to wipe down the interior of your dishwasher, including the door and gasket.

Step 6: Run a Rinse Cycle

Run a rinse cycle on your dishwasher to remove any remaining baking soda or vinegar residue.

Additional Tips

Here are some additional tips to help keep your dishwasher clean and running smoothly.

  • Run your dishwasher regularly to prevent buildup
  • Scrape off large food particles before loading dishes
  • Use dishwasher cleaner tablets once a month
  • Check the dishwasher drain regularly for debris
  • Use a rinse aid to prevent water spots

Can I use apple cider vinegar instead of white vinegar?

No, apple cider vinegar is not recommended for cleaning appliances like dishwashers.

Can I use bleach to clean my dishwasher?

Bleach is not recommended for cleaning dishwashers as it can damage the rubber seals and gaskets.

How often should I clean my dishwasher with vinegar?

We recommend cleaning your dishwasher with vinegar once a month.

How do I clean the dishwasher spray arms?

You can clean the spray arms by removing them and soaking them in warm soapy water. Use a toothbrush to scrub away any buildup.

What can I do if my dishwasher still smells bad after cleaning it with vinegar?

Try running a hot water cycle with a dishwasher cleaner tablet to eliminate any remaining odors. If the smell persists, check the dishwasher drain for any buildup or clogs.

How clean dishwasher with vinegar?

Cleaning a dishwasher with vinegar is an easy and effective way to keep it running smoothly. To start, fill a dishwasher-safe cup with white vinegar and place it on the top rack of the dishwasher. Run the dishwasher on its hottest setting, allowing the vinegar to circulate throughout the machine.

After the cycle has finished, wipe down any areas that have visible buildup or residue. This will help remove any dirt or grime that has accumulated over time.

To further clean and deodorize your dishwasher, sprinkle baking soda over the bottom of the appliance before running another cycle. The baking soda helps absorb odors and break down food particles that may be stuck in crevices or hard-to-reach places. Once again, run the machine on its hottest setting for best results.

After both cycles are complete, use a damp cloth to wipe down all surfaces inside the dishwasher to remove any remaining residue from cleaning products or food particles.

Can you clean dishwasher with vinegar?

Yes, you can clean your dishwasher with vinegar. Vinegar is a natural and effective cleaning agent that can be used to remove dirt, grime, and bacteria from surfaces. To use vinegar to clean your dishwasher, start by filling a cup with white vinegar and placing it on the top rack. Then run an empty cycle on the hottest setting. This will help to loosen any stuck-on food particles and dissolve any soap scum or grease buildup. After the cycle is complete, wipe down the interior of the dishwasher with a damp cloth to remove any residue. Finally, rinse out the dishwasher with hot water to ensure all of the vinegar has been removed. With regular cleaning using vinegar, you can keep your dishwasher looking and functioning like new!


Cleaning your dishwasher with vinegar is an easy and effective way to keep it clean and odor-free. The natural properties of vinegar help break down mineral buildup, grease, and soap scum. Follow the step-by-step guide we provided to ensure that your dishwasher stays clean and running smoothly for years to come.

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