How to clean a dishwasher with vinegar

How to clean a dishwasher with vinegar

Steps for cleaning a dishwasher with vinegar.

After cleaning the sump on our Kenmore dishwasher I noticed that the walls of the dishwasher and some of the utensils still had a white film on them, so I used distilled white vinegar to clean the dishwasher and the utensils. I was impressed, the white vinegar worked great.

To see my video on how I cleaned the sump on the dishwasher, click this link:


  1. this video is part wrong most all dishwashers go in to Drain out upon
    start up so there goes you cleaner down the drain .
    so use a rinse only cycle ,start the dishwasher when you hear the water going in,
    stop open the door and now add 2 cup the vinegar run for 10 minutes
    open the door or hit hit pause button let set for an hour .
    then start it back up to finish may find your doing some of the cleaning yourself
    after all the unit does not have hands use subbing pad . good luck

  2. Very Nice!  Another Idea is to put a glass or cup in the washer upside down and fill it with vinegar and another with a mix of water and baking soda.  That way they will fill over time and over flow adding some with foaming action as the cycle progresses. (but do not use too much or it can over foam) 

  3. Great info! I didn't have vinegar but I did have about a half dozen rotten apples that smelled just like vinegar, so I threw them in for a cycle. My repair bill was about $700. 

  4. The Dishwasher in the video is a Whirlpool built Kenmore and it doesn't drain at the beginning.  It starts with a fill cycle.  If you have a D/W that starts with a drain (like the Bosch, LG, etc.) Just run it for 1 minute and then add the vinegar.  

  5. 1- The white stuff is hard water build up.  You need Lemi Shine added to your detergent. I suggest 1 teaspoon per load added right on top of your detergent.

    2- Adding Vinegar to the bottom of the dishwasher does NOTHING… why?  Because ALL dishwashers bring in water, then wash for about 5 minutes, then DRAIN all that water out, they then bring in water again, and open the detergent cup, and wash with that.  If you add Vinegar to the dishwasher by pouring it in, all the vinegar is drained away in 5 minutes.

    Dont believe me…start your dishwasher and listen to it for about 5 minutes.  You will hear it stop, drain, fill and start washing again.

    To add Vinegar, place the measuring cup or bowl filled 1/2 way with Vinegar by placing it UP on the top rack. AFTER this 5 minutes pre-wash is over.  This way the washing action will fill the bowl the rest of the way and spill the mixture of vinegar and wash throughout the whole wash cycle.

  6. My dishwasher did that almost immediately when it was new. I called for warranty repair and my issue was I using cascade that had a bleach product in it. I switched to the other cascade and never had another problem. FYI I do have hard water in my area too.

  7. For European dishwasher such as Bosch that drains first I was instructed just yesterday by the repair technician to put a coffee cup filled with vinegar in the middle of the upper rack and run a cycle.  Worked like a charm.

  8. Interesting way of doing it. I guess the water would eventually overflow the cup so that the vinegar would disperse in the tub. Thanks for the information.

  9. I read about this in Kim & Aggie's The Cleaning Bible! The only thing they did differently was they put the cup of vinegar on the top rack; not pouring it into the unit. Then they ran a cycle. When the cycle is completed, the cup would be full of water, which you would inspect for flouters (white flakes). Watched your vid. To see how effective vinegar was.

  10. Don't add the vinegar until either the main wash cycle is running or at least until after the water fill starts. Many reversing-motor dishwashers like my 23-year old Gibson (made in the US by Frigidaire) run a drain cycle first, even though they start empty. The best way to avoid running vinegar directly down the drain is to listen for flowing water, then interrupt the cycle and add

  11. I just did this. Cleaning the dishwasher is now my least favorite chore, but it had to be done….oh, that was so gross!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.