Cleaning the dishwasher isn’t a task we typically remember, until an unpleasant smell reminds us it’s overdue. So what can you do to combat dishwasher odor? Our Bosch dishwasher cleaning tips tackle how to clean a dishwasher, from the tub to the spray arms, to banish bad smells.

Bosch Dishwasher Cleaning 101: Eliminating and Preventing Odor

Our Bosch dishwasher cleaning tips effectively attack smell at its source with proper cleaning techniques and basic household supplies. We’ll also discuss how regular maintenance and proper use can go a long way in preventing odors.

Clean the Dishwasher Filter

A dishwasher filter works by screening out food particles that could otherwise clog the dishwasher drain. Over time, these food particles collect in the filter and create an offensive odor as they decay. 

Here’s how to clean a Bosch dishwasher filter to remove smelly food particles and eliminate odor:

  1. Remove the dishwasher’s lower rack and spray arm.
  2. Twist the filter cap and pull up to remove the filter and mesh screen.
  3. Rinse the filter and screen in warm water.
  4. Place the filter back in the dishwasher. Twist the filter cap in the opposite direction to lock in place.
  5. Replace the spray arm and lower rack.
bosch dishwasher cleaning

Dishwasher Tub Cleaning

The dishwasher tub is a warm, moist environment that can easily breed smelly bacteria on leftover food particles. Here’s how to clean a Bosch dishwasher tub and banish odor with basic household ingredients:

  1. White vinegar: Pour 1 cup of white vinegar in the base of an empty dishwasher and run a heavy clean cycle.
  2. Baking soda: After running a vinegar cycle, sprinkle 1 cup of baking soda in the dishwasher’s base and allow it to sit overnight. Run a regular, empty clean cycle in the morning.
  3. Bleach: For persistent mildew, pour 1 cup of bleach in the base of the empty dishwasher and run a 3rd clean cycle. Skip this step if your dishwasher has a stainless steel interior, as bleach can discolor stainless steel.

Clean Dishwasher Spray Arms

The small holes on a dishwasher’s spray arms often become blocked with food particles, preventing water from spraying outward and leaving dishes dirty. While proper dishwasher loading tips can prevent these blockages, mold and mildew can still collect on the spray arms, creating persistent odor. Follow these Bosch dishwasher cleaning steps to address the spray arms:

  1. Remove the dishwasher’s lower racks.
  2. Lift up on the lower spray arm and twist the upper arm’s knob to remove it.
  3. Use a toothpick to remove food particles and debris from each arm’s holes.
  4. Rinse each arm under warm water.
  5. Dry with a clean cloth.
  6. Reattach the spray arms.

Inspect and Clear the Drain Line

If Bosch dishwasher smells linger even after the above steps, then a clogged drain line may be responsible. Here’s how to inspect the drain line and clear the clog:

  1. With a screwdriver and pliers, disconnect the drain hose from the garbage disposal or air cap.
  2. Check for blockages by running a dishwasher clean cycle and holding the hose over a bucket or sink. If the hose doesn’t drain, then a clog is causing a blockage.
  3. Use a straightened hanger or plumbing snake to carefully remove the clog.
  4. If the hose drains, then the clog is likely in the portion of the drain line that’s behind the dishwasher. As this is a more complex repair, we suggest utilizing a professional service to remove the clog.

Tips to Prevent Dishwasher Odors

Our Bosch dishwasher cleaning tips can also be part of regular maintenance to prevent odors from recurring. The following suggestions use these tips proactively to avoid odor:

  • Clean the dishwasher filter on a monthly basis.
  • Perform dishwasher tub cleanings every month and wipe down the tub with a clean cloth after each use.
  • Use the right detergent: Bosch recommends using FINISH brand detergent for the best odor-reducing results. Don’t use too much detergent, as excessive soap residue can also breed smelly bacteria. Follow the recommendations on your detergent package and use the least possible amount.

If a Bosch dishwasher cleaning still leaves you with persistent odor, then it may be time to consult a dishwasher repair service. Aviv Service today can help with any dishwasher repair.