How To Clean A Smelly Dishwasher

Photo of a an attractive woman holding a large stinky fish

Do you have a smelly dishwasher? Have you been walking around your kitchen wondering what the heck stinks only to discover that the smell is dishwasher odor.

Cleaning a dishwasher and making it stop stinking is relatively easy. The problem is that most people don't realize what actually is causing the problem and that even though they clean the dishwasher it's just a matter of time before the dishwasher starts to stink again.

I have been servicing dishwashers since 1985. In all that time I can assure you that the dishwashers I have encountered with the most dishwasher odor are dishwashers where the homeowner uses liquid detergent. Whatever the catalyst is that liquid detergent manufacturers use to hold their detergent in suspension, it causes a buildup inside the pump and plumbing mechanisms of dishwashers. This sticky build up acts like a magnet to food particles causing them to get stuck in the plumbing and pump behind the scenes. And that's what causes dishwashers to stink.

I always tell folks to switch to a granular detergent. Granular detergents do not create that build up inside dishwashers that is seen or unseen like liquid detergents do.

If there is no buildup of detergent there is no place for food particles and other crud to stick. No food particle build up equals no odor. So if you want your dishwasher to stop stinking in the future, switch to granular detergent. It may take some time after you clean it for all of the crud to get washed away, but at least it will stop building up.

Now how do you clean a stinky dishwasher? Well that's easy. You can use lots of products on the market such as Finish Dishwasher Cleaner, Whirlpool Affresh Dishwasher and Disposal Cleaner W10282479, Procter and Gamble Cascade Dishwasher Cleaner or any other brand. Believe it or not you can also use the breakfast drink Tang to help break loose all the crud behind the scenes in your dishwasher.

I recognize that my advice goes against most of what liquid detergent manufacturers will have you believe. But the fact is none of of them have 30 years experience working on dishwashers. And besides, I don't have a horse in the race.

The bottom line is if you want your dishwasher to smell fresh as new after you clean it, switch to a granular dishwasher detergent such as, Finish® Quantum dishwasher tablets. And you will no longer have to say, my dishwasher stinks.