Unexpected Things that can be Cleaned in the Dishwasher

things to wash in the dishwasher

The dishwasher, a common kitchen appliance, cleans more than the dinner dishes. The dirty dish machine tackles many tedious cleaning jobs around the house.

Here are ten things you probably didn’t know your dishwasher could handle.

Exhaust Fan Filter

The filter covering the exhaust fan over the stove gets messy and gunky, accumulating oil buildup each time you cook. To keep your exhaust fan working smoothly, place the filter in your dishwasher each month or by the cleaning schedule recommended by the manufacturer.

Use a high-quality dishwasher detergent, known for its grease-cutting abilities, and run through a normal cycle at the hottest water temperature. The degreaser in the detergent along with the hot water dissolves the greasy gunk with little effort.

Kitchen Sponges

Most sponges are breeding grounds for mold and bacteria where they thrive and multiply. By placing sponges on the top rack and setting the machine to heat dry, you kill many of the bacteria and germs hiding inside the sponges.

Plastic Kids Toys

Kids spread germs and toys get nasty and dirty after several play sessions. Clean and sanitize toys for the next play sessions by running them through a normal cycle. Make sure the toys don’t have electrical pieces and components, or they might short out.

Dishes for Soaps and Holders for Toothbrushes

If you’ve recently looked inside the holes of the holder for your toothbrush, you probably noticed the gunky buildup at the bottom: It’s ugly, slimy, and gross. Same with the dish holding your soap, the bottom cakes with residue. Easily remove the gunk for these bathroom pieces by placing in the top dishwasher rack then running for a full cycle. Don’t put them in the bottom since these dishes are easy to break.

Pet Toys and Dishes

As with humans, pets want clean water and food dishes and clean toys. Run them through a dishwasher cycle to clean and sanitize. Before putting them in the dishwasher, check to see if it’s safe to do so. If you don’t want to wash them with the family dishes, run them through a separate cycle.

Scrubbing Brushes

You should sanitize scrubbing brushes the same as kitchen sponges to remove bacteria and germs. Place the brushes in the dishwasher to freshen and clean.


If your hairbrushes are plastic, you can wash them in your dishwasher. Remove the hair from the bristles to keep from clogging the filter and drain. Place brushes in the basket for utensils, anchoring them securely, and run on a full cycle.

Dish Drying Racks

Dish drying racks, like scrubbing brushes and sponges, breed bacteria and germs. Remove grime and buildup by placing the drying rack in the bottom dishwasher rack then running on a full cycle.

Glass Light Globes

Glass light globes, especially those near the kitchen, become gunky with dust, grease, and dirt. Let the light shine through by placing in the top dishwasher rack then running through a cycle. Be sure they are sitting securely to keep from breaking.

Cup Holders for the Car

Newer cars have cup holders that are removable. Keep them clean by putting holders in the top dishwasher rack then running through a cycle with other household dishes.

Category: Homekeeping