Do you think about your appliances during spring cleaning? We do!
If an apple a day keeps the doctor away, then simple cleaning and maintenance may keep our service crew away.
We always recommend to follow the use and care guides provided by the manufacturer, but here are 20 tips to think about when cleaning this spring.
#1 – Stains on the interior glass of the oven door can be cleaned with a thick paste made from baking soda and water. Apply the paste to stains on the glass, let set, then scrape off.
#2 – Never place foil on the bottom of an oven. The foil can permanently damage the oven surface and the damage is not covered under warranty.
#3 -Check to see if your oven has a self-clean cycle. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and run the self-clean cycle twice before the warranty expires. If anything should need to be repaired, it will still be covered by the warranty.
#4 – When the oven is no longer under warranty, run the self-clean cycle at least once annually. Do not run the self-clean feature before hosting a holiday gathering. If something should happen, you would not want the gathering to be affected.
#5 – Remove all oven racks before running the self-clean. Clean the racks by hand.
#6 – Perform a burn off process before using any new wall oven, range oven or warming drawer. The heat will remove any remaining residue from manufacturing.
COOKTOPS & RANGETOPS
#7 – Soak cooktop and range top grates in a container of white vinegar. Wrapping them in a towel soaked in white vinegar for 24 hours also works.
#8 – It’s all about timing with spills or drips on range tops, cooktops and in ovens. Let the stain cool before cleaning but do not let it completely cool. Waiting too long may allow it to become a permanent spot or stain.
#9 – Regularly change the water filter. Check the use and care guide for the correct part number and frequency.
#10 – Regularly clean the condenser. This keeps the refrigerator from overheating and keeps it running efficiently. Older ones can be cleaned by using a vacuum and brush. Newer ones require a vacuum and a blower. A good rule of thumb is to check the condenser every six months. If you have pets that shed, then cut the time in half for each pet. So if you have three or more shedding pets, check the condenser every month.
WASHERS & DRYERS
#11 – Many washers today are high efficiency machines and require high efficiency detergent. You generally need to use no more than two tablespoons of the detergent per load. Use less if the detergent is concentrated. Check to see if your washer has a clean cycle to help prevent mold and mildew. It is a good rule of thumb to run the clean cycle once a month.
#12 – Check your dryer vents yearly. Thoroughly clean the vents at least every five years. Check it more often if the line is longer than six to eight feet, or bends repeatedly during its path to the outside cap.
#13 – See if your dishwasher has a removable screen filter in the sump. It should be removed and cleaned regularly.
#14 – Use Glisten or Affresh once each month to remove food, detergent and mineral buildup.
#15 – Many vent hoods have removable grease screens that can be placed in the dishwasher for cleaning. Consult the manufacturer’s instructions for the hood.
#16 – Over the range microwaves have filters and screens on the bottom that should be cleaned or changed regularly.
#17 – Regularly change the water filter. Check the use and care guide for the correct part number and frequency.
#18 – Use the manufacturer’s instructions to clean the ice machine at least every six months. If you need to turn the ice machine off, take the proper steps to prevent mold and mildew. Once it grows in your ice machine, it is very difficult to remove. To help prevent mold and mildew from forming, remove all ice and water from the reservoir. Leave the door open until the interior of the machine completely dries.
#19 – Carefully clean the water and ice dispenser in the door of a refrigerator with a diluted bleach solution. Apply the solution to the plastic surface to prevent mold and mildew.
#20 – Never clean an exterior stainless steel appliance surface with a product containing bleach or chlorine. Permanent staining or marks will occur.
The holidays are approaching and if you’re like me, your dishwasher is an essential part of any dinner party! If yours isn’t performing at its best, try some of these simple remedies.
If the problem still remains, contact our Service Department so we can try to get you scheduled for a visit before the holidays.
Service Department Phone Number: (616) 288-1020
or fill out our online form here.
Detergent cup remains closed: This is the simplest issue to fix. Make sure that nothing is in front of or blocking the cup like large items in the lower racks. It is also important to be sure that the timer is off.
Dishes are still wet: This is a frustration that many people face because new dishwashers do not dry like older models. Older models had a heating element that constantly stayed on during drying cycles. Newer models cycle the heating element on and off, which means it may only be on for 10-15 minutes total in a 30 minute drying cycle. Too much or too little detergent can also affect how well dishes dry. If your dishes are constantly wet, look into these things…
Check that the cycle has been set to the heated drying option
Check the rinse aid level to see if it needs to be filled
Take a look at how the dishwasher is loaded, ensuring that big items are not blocking smaller items from being cleaned
It is helpful to know that plastic cools more quickly than metal and glass. Water often evaporates off of glass and metal and condenses on the cooler plastic items leaving some dishes dry while others are still wet
Too much noise: a machine will be too noisy if there is debris stuck in the vent fan, drain pump, or circulation. A good rule of thumb is “if water can’t dissolve the debris, don’t put it into the dishwasher.” A bad seal can let water into the bearing, creating the excess noise. Be sure to check out the issue before the dishwasher is damaged further and requires extensive repairs.
Too much sudsing: Pre-washing dishes with dish detergent may be the cause of “over sudsing.” To help with the suds issue, add a ¼ cup of vegetable oil to the dishwasher and run a normal wash cycle. The oil will help dissipate the bubbles. Washing your hands over dishes in the sink can also leave residue on dishes that can cause additional suds. Remember, dishwashers use special detergent and will have issues if your dishes have any residue from other soaps.
Dishwasher leaving white residue on dishes: White residue on dishes started getting worse after phosphates were, by law, removed from detergents. This can be reduced or cleaned out by a simple trick – start the dishwasher in normal cycle and add 1 quart of white vinegar directly into the bottom of the dishwasher. Let it run its full cycle. The vinegar should clear out existing white residue, and keep the unit clean and clear for future uses. Glisten or Afresh can also be used to help remedy this issue. Whatever cleaner is used, it needs to be added after the pre-rinse, so that it is not flushed out before the wash cycle.
Many people don’t realize they need to clean their dishwashing machine periodically. However, if you hand-washed your dishes, you would still need to clean your sink. The same idea applies to your automatic dishwasher.
If you have dishes coming from your dishwasher dirtier than when they went in, it may just need a good cleaning. We detailed the causes of cloudy dishes and glasses in an earlier blog post. In this two-minute video, Scott shows you how to clean and maintain a dishwasher and make your old dishwasher work like new again.