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How to clean a smelly dishwasher

How to clean a smelly dishwasher

Learn how to clean a smelly dishwasher with tips from Finish®. Don't worry, you probably won't have to call a repair service to deal with that odor.

Few things are more frustrating than pulling open your dishwasher only to find the remnants of last night's meal on your plates and cutlery. Or, opening your dishwasher to a puff of smelly air instead of just clean steam.

Fortunately, your smelly dishwasher doesn’t necessarily have to lead to an expensive service fee. Follow our simple steps below and your dishwasher will be back to its old self in no time.

  1. Scrape off excess food. Although you don’t need to rinse your dishes before each cycle, you should remove any large pieces of food that could get stuck and start to rot in your machine.
  2. Rinse and/or replace the filter. Some dishwashers have a filter located at the bottom of the machine, which helps to stop food from clogging up the drain or ending up on your clean dishes. Check your dishwasher manual for information on how often you should clean or replace your dishwasher filter.
  3. Clean the nooks and crannies. Food debris can become trapped in the tiny crevices of your machine, so check areas like the rubber seal around your dishwasher door and inside the spray arms for crumbs and debris.
  4. Use a dishwasher cleaner. Remember to clean your dishwasher once a month using Finish® Dishwasher Cleaner to help make sure minerals and particles don't have a chance to build up.

If you've done all these steps, consider repeating them just to be sure. Then, if your dishwasher still smells, seek professional advice.