TikTok user shows off baking soda hack for cleaning headlights
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Dishwashers are a spectacular timesaver when smashing out the household chores list, but how often does the dishwasher make the list? According to experts, you should clean your dishwasher at least once a month to keep it in working order – and you only need three items to do so.
If uncleaned and unmaintained, dishwashers can suffer a build-up of soap scum, grease, and food debris which over time, can cause clogs.
These clogs can squeeze the opening for the circulating water and can leave your dishes and utensils streaked with old food and soap residue.
Not only can this build-up lead to unpleasant smells, but it’s also a breeding ground for bacteria.
Cleaning the dishwasher can seem daunting – there’s a lot going on and a lot behind the scenes. However, by following these four easy steps, you’ll have your dishwasher sparkling in no time – and even better, you probably already have the items to do so in the cupboard already.
All you need is some white vinegar, baking soda, and a toothbrush.
Examine the drain and wash the filter
To do this, pull out the bottom rack and remove the filter in the base.
It should be easy to unscrew and take apart however, you might want to check the manual if you need further clarification.
Give these parts a scrub in the sink with some soapy water – you can use the toothbrush to help reach the awkward areas.
Stephanie Pollard from Hellonest said: “Food can also get stuck in the spray arms. If dishes aren’t getting fully cleaned, this could be the reason.
“You can take out the spray arms and check for clogs – a toothpick works well to dislodge whatever is trapped in there.”
Run a cycle with white vinegar
Next, it’s time to run a cycle with white vinegar.
White vinegar is great for removing lingering odours, as well as obliterating hard water and soap build-up.
Fill up a dishwasher-safe cup of white vinegar and place it on the top rack. Run the dishwasher through a cycle on the hottest setting with no other detergent.
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Once finished, the dishwasher should be empty and sparkling – apart from the vinegar filled cup.
Now run a cycle with baking soda
After the vinegar cycle, sprinkle a cup of baking soda around the bottom of the dishwasher and run it through a short cycle on the hottest setting possible.
The baking soda will help remove any tricky stains and further deodorise the appliance.
Use the toothbrush for any remaining residue
This step isn’t always necessary and you should find the vinegar and the baking soda will do the job nicely, however, you might want to scrub up a few areas in the nooks for the optimum result.
Get rid of remaining stains – if any – with the brush, replace the filter, and voila. You should have a sparkling dishwasher free from grime, odours, and bacteria.
How to prevent further dishwasher problems
There are a number of things you should remember when maintaining your dishwasher to ensure it runs smoothly and problem-free, and first is prevention.
Check and clean the filter at least once a week, and run a vinegar and baking soda cycle once a month, as noted above.
Secondly, don’t over-stack it. Everyone’s guilty of playing Tetris with the dishwasher. However, it can mean your plates aren’t being cleaned as thoroughly as they should be.
Thirdly, pre-rinse the dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. The dishwasher is a cleaner, not a food processor – so make sure there’s no food left on the plates and utensils to prevent any blockages.
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