How to Clean a Commercial Dishwasher: A Comprehensive Guide

Running a successful restaurant or commercial kitchen requires not only excellent culinary skills but also maintaining high standards of hygiene and cleanliness. One of the crucial appliances in any commercial kitchen is the dishwasher. Regularly cleaning and maintaining your commercial dishwasher not only ensures the longevity of the machine but also guarantees that your dishes come out sparkling clean every time. In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of effectively cleaning a commercial dishwasher, step by step.

A clean commercial dishwasher not only improves the efficiency of your kitchen operations but also ensures the safety and health of your customers. Regular cleaning prevents mold, bacteria, and mineral buildup that can affect the quality of your dishes.

Safety First

Before you start cleaning, ensure that the dishwasher is turned off and unplugged to prevent any accidents. Put on protective gear, including gloves and safety goggles.

Preparing for Cleaning

Remove all dishes, racks, and utensil holders from the dishwasher. This provides easy access to all the components that need cleaning.

Removing Debris and Food Residues

Gently remove large food particles and debris from the bottom of the dishwasher and the drain. This prevents clogs and ensures proper drainage.

Cleaning the Interior

Prepare a mixture of warm water and mild detergent. Use a soft brush or sponge to clean the interior walls, racks, and trays. Pay special attention to corners and crevices.

Cleaning the Exterior

Wipe down the exterior surfaces with a damp cloth and a gentle cleanser. This step enhances the overall appearance of your kitchen.

Unclogging Spray Arms and Nozzles

Spray arms and nozzles can get clogged with mineral deposits. Remove them carefully and soak them in a solution of vinegar and water. Gently scrub to remove buildup.

Checking and Cleaning Filters

Remove the dishwasher filters and check for any residue or debris. Clean them thoroughly using warm water and a brush. Replace if damaged.

Descaling the Dishwasher

Mineral deposits can accumulate in the dishwasher’s interior. Use a commercial descaling agent or a mixture of vinegar and water to eliminate these deposits.

Cleaning the Door Gasket

Inspect the door gasket for any debris or mold growth. Clean it with a damp cloth and mild detergent. Ensure it’s properly sealed to prevent leaks.

Wiping Down Control Panels

Use a damp cloth to clean the control panel and buttons. Be cautious not to wet any electrical components.

Sanitizing the Machine

Run a cycle with a dishwasher-safe sanitizing solution to eliminate any remaining germs and bacteria.

Reassembling and Testing

Once all components are dry, reassemble the dishwasher. Plug it back in and run a test cycle to ensure everything is functioning correctly.

Regular Maintenance Tips

  • Daily Cleaning: Wipe down interior surfaces and remove food particles.
  • Weekly Inspections: Check filters, spray arms, and gaskets for debris.
  • Monthly Descaling: Prevent mineral buildup with descaling agents.
  • Quarterly Deep Clean: Follow the steps outlined in this guide.


Maintaining a clean commercial dishwasher is essential for the smooth operation of your kitchen. Follow these steps regularly to ensure your dishes are spotless and your dishwasher performs optimally.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

How often should I clean my commercial dishwasher?

Regular cleaning is essential. Daily wiping and weekly inspections are recommended, with a thorough cleaning every few months.

Can I use bleach to clean my dishwasher?

It’s best to avoid bleach as it can damage the dishwasher’s components. Stick to mild detergents and recommended cleaning agents.

Why is descaling important?

Descaling prevents mineral buildup, which can affect the dishwasher’s efficiency and the quality of your dishes.

Can I clean the filters in a dishwasher with hot water?

Yes, warm water is effective in cleaning filters. Avoid using hot water, as it might deform the filters.

Is it necessary to wear protective gear while cleaning?

Yes, wearing protective gear like gloves and safety goggles is crucial to prevent any accidents and ensure your safety.

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]