How to Combat Hard Water in Your Dishwasher

Hard water can be really tough on all of your appliances, including your dishwasher. When your water is full of minerals, those minerals can deposit on your appliances, faucets, and pipes. Over time those minerals build up. This buildup can cause damage ranging anywhere from decrease efficiency to completely ruining your machine. This is true of your dishwasher.

Not only does hard water decrease efficiency, but as hard water dries from your dishes it leaves behind a cloudy white residue on your glasses and silverware. When those same minerals buildup on the inside of your dishwasher, it can lead to rust, and the eventual breakdown of parts. If you know you have hard water, you can eliminate or reduce your risk of costly repairs by doing working to combat hard water in your dishwasher. Here’s how…

Be Proactive
If you know you have hard water, you may want to consider getting a water softener. Not only does hard water negatively affect your dishwasher, it can also wreak havoc on all your other appliances. It can even make it harder to rinse your hair in the shower! A water softener may be a large cost upfront, but it pays off overtime when you get increased efficiency that can lower your utility bills, and help you to avoid costly repairs.

Restoration
Whether you get a water softener or not, if you have had hard water for a while you’ll want to remove the current buildup in your dishwasher. You can do this a few different ways. There are products you can buy from the store specifically designed to remove hard water build up. Just make sure you read and follow the directions. You can also try some common household items to remove buildup as well. Things like vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice can help remove the buildup (and save you some money too!)
Just fill the bottom of your dishwasher with a few cups of vinegar. Run your dishwasher on low, stopping it halfway through the cycle. Let the vinegar stand for about 20 minutes, then start the cycle again and let it complete.

Maintain
Continue to remove hard water from your dishwasher at least once a month. Add vinegar instead of a rinse aid, and/or add the baking soda to the dishwasher detergent you normally use to help keep your dishwasher free from hard water. You can also try filling a dish with lemon juice, vinegar, or baking soda and leaving it on the top rack during a normal cycle. These techniques all help to disperse your lemon juice, vinegar, or baking soda evenly throughout your dishwasher to prevent buildup.

Maintenance is always the best practice when it comes to your household appliances. But even after taking great care of your dishwasher, oven, or refrigerator, sometimes things just break. If you find yourself with an appliance that isn’t working properly, call Peter’s Appliance. No matter what type of appliance you have, or how old, Pete’s Appliance will get you back to your routine with the appliances you love!