Sometimes your dishwasher gets a little grungy and needs some green cleaning to eliminate odors or minerals and soap residue. Not all dishwasher cleaning products on the market are green though. To get the inside of your dishwasher looking and smelling like new, try one of these economical, simple, safe and (best of all) effective solutions.

1. Baking soda is a solid bet for getting rid of odors, especially when it smells like there is something rotten lurking in there.

To remove stains and unpleasant smells, make a baking soda paste with water and clean the interior of your dishwasher with it. Then leave it sit for about an hour. Soak a microfiber cloth with vinegar and wipe the paste off with it. Run your washer on a short cycle to lift off any paste that remains. To avoid the baking soda from hardening or caking, do not use a very hot water setting or any sanitizing program. If you still have a small amount of baking soda left afterwards, put a cup of vinegar on the top rack and run the cycle again.

To avoid odor build-up, sprinkle the bottom of your dishwasher with baking soda on occasion between loads and leave the door slightly open to promote air infiltration. You may also add a few drops of essential oil to the soda, such as lavender, lemon, peppermint or orange, in a bowl and blend with a spoon. Feel free to combine oils, but be sure to use a non-metal bowl and spoon. This is a great disinfecting remedy and can be also used as an energizing green cleanser in bathrooms and kitchens to break up grease or take on other tough cleaning chores. Store the cleanser mixture in an airtight container.

2. Citric Acid, naturally found in citrus fruits, is great for breaking up mineral deposits and soap residue.

It also acts as a green bleach and aids in stain removal. If you notice discolored or filmy splotches clinging to inside of your dishwasher this is a great product to try. It is available at most supermarkets in the form of powder. Drop 4-8 tablespoons to the bottom of the appliance then run it on the very hottest cycle, pausing the cycle before the water drains. Leave the water to rest in your dishwasher for about 3 hours and then allow the cycle resume. Regularly add some citric acid to the detergent holder and run a cycle to keep the dishwasher clean. Used monthly, this is an effective measure to prevent the sprayer holes from clogging too.

3. Vinegar also zaps odor, disinfects and breaks down detergent residue, frequently a problem associated with hard water.

Just place 1-2 cups of vinegar in a glass measuring cup on the top rack of your dishwasher and run the dishwasher on a hot cycle. Here again you can add a couple drops of essential oil to leave a naturally clean scent. Repeating this process once a week to month keeps odor at bay. Be sure to never mix vinegar or citric acid with chlorine bleach.

We proudly exercise great green methods to clean home at Class A Cleaning, so give us a call today at 608-310-3123 to schedule a professional green cleaning.