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A dishwasher that emits an unpleasant odor can make your dishes seem anything but clean. Dishwashers often develop odors when standing water inside of them causes mildew to develop. Some areas of a dishwasher can also accumulate food particles, which can produce unpleasant odors.

Preventing dishwasher odor through dishwasher maintenance is easier than extinguishing odors after they begin. Save your nose by using these effective ways to prevent dishwasher odor and prolong the quality of your appliance.

1. Rinse Dishes

Preventing dishwasher odor may require nothing more than refining your handwashing technique. Thoroughly scrape and rinse plates, bowls, cups, and utensils before loading them into the dishwasher.

2. Run Cleaning Cycles

Run your empty dishwasher with one cup of white vinegar and some baking soda to thoroughly eliminate odors. These cleaning cycles provide your dishwasher with a deep clean.

3. Clean by Hand

Other substances such as soap scum and grime can accumulate on the inner walls and door of your dishwasher; these can also produce unpleasant odors. The best method for preventing this is to regularly clean the inside of your dishwasher by hand. Use a cloth or scrub brush with hot, soapy water to remove the buildup. Remember to wipe down less obvious components of your dishwasher that can accumulate molds, such as the rack and door gasket.

4. Maintain the Drain Systems

The drain filter, drain hose, and spray arm are a few areas of a dishwasher that can contribute to odor. A clogged drain filter—located near the bottom rear of the dishwasher—can accumulate food particles and standing water. Routinely check the draining systems to dislodge any residual food or mildew and to prevent dishwasher odor.

5. Avoid Diverting Resources

A less conventional but effective method for preventing dishwasher odor is to avoid using other hot water appliances while the dishwasher runs. Diverting hot water resources can reduce the cleaning power of the dishwasher and leave unpleasant odors as a result.

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