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Why isn't my dishwasher cleaning properly?

(21 Posts)
cantmakecarrotcake Wed 08-Jul-15 13:17:26

Just that really. It's only got this way recently despite cleaning the filter and using a dishwasher cleaner. We just end up with dried on crud on everything and the water that collects on top of the bases of mugs has stuff floating in it.

The plates etc aren't even all that dirty but it feels like unless I wash everything before it goes in I end up washing it up again anyway - only it's harder because it's all dried on.

Thoughts and tips welcome! :-)

LillianGish Wed 08-Jul-15 13:20:15

Have you cleaned out the rotating cleaning arms that spray the water? These can get blocked with all kinds of bits. My brother showed me how to do this when he came to stay and I do it at least once a week now. Makes a massive difference.

Twinkie1 Wed 08-Jul-15 13:21:46

Do you use 3 in 1 tables? When ours was delivered after having this problem with old one the guy recommended cheap ordinary powder or tablets with separate salt and rinse aid.

He said lots of people chuck in the 3 in 1 tablets and top up with salt and rinse aid and it causes the dishwasher to be full of silicates which dry onto the crockery and cutlery and food particles sticks to that.

We use Aldi basic tablets and then use separate salt and rinse aid and no longer have this problem.

wowfudge Wed 08-Jul-15 14:59:52

Have you changed your crockery recently? We have some dinner plates which are bigger than our old ones and unless you put them in very strategically they stop the arm hanging below the upper basket from rotating properly. Not usually an issue as we use smaller pasta bowls more. It could also be something being stacked in there in a such a way that the water isn't circulating properly.

cantmakecarrotcake Wed 08-Jul-15 18:42:52

Thanks everyone. V helpful. Our crockery hasn't changed but we do use the 3-in-1 tablets - which incidentally don't always fully dissolve.

We'll have a look at the arms to see if they're dirty inside and try powder, rinse aid and salt.

Artistic Wed 08-Jul-15 20:13:58

Same problem here. Will try the suggestions & report back.

I also get a 'fishy' smell from the dw from time to time. It stays a few days and then goes away.we don't even eat fish!! confused

Wonderfulview Wed 08-Jul-15 20:27:55

I had something similar, turned out the water heating thingy thermostat (can you tell I am not technical at all wink) was broken, so everything was done with cold water. That distributed the grease nicely over everything, in a thin layer, which really looked scummy.sad

PigletJohn Thu 09-Jul-15 15:27:33

you say the tablets do not fully dissolve.

That is probably due to the water not being hot enough, or perhaps the tablet door is not opening correctly.

Fishy smells are often from electrical items overheating. The insulating hard plastic used for switches and sockets etc does not melt when it gets hot, but it chars and goes brown then black. Start by examining the plug and socket. Sadly the heat also softens copper, so the switch terminals and the ends of the wires inside them may need to be replaced. Repairing wires is not an amateur job.

murphys Thu 09-Jul-15 15:36:21

It happened to me a few times, and although i was using the 3-1 tablets, you still need to have salt in the dispenser. When I topped up the salt, it cleaned properly again. So now i just use the powder as I always have salt and rinse aid in anyway.

Or.. could i be that you had a bowl with Weetabix in there. Maybe its just me but whenever we had a load that wasn't all that clean, there happened to be a bowl that had Weetabix in there..... shock. So those bowls get rinsed out properly, the other stuff i just bung in scraped....

Pussycatbow Thu 09-Jul-15 15:38:14

If it's on an "eco" wash then the water just doesn't get hot enough (I find).

Try a liquid.

cantmakecarrotcake Thu 09-Jul-15 20:12:53

We do use the eco setting. It says 50C and takes 2hr 20min if I recall. The tablet comes out of the drawer ok but is designed to be caught by a little tray on the top shelf and often there's residue left behind in the tray which suggests not enough/hot enough water I guess. I tried just chucking it in the bottom but it didn't really make a difference.

Cleaning the spinning arms improved things a bit but there were still things that needed washing up after.

I think maybe powder, salt and rinse aid will be the next step. That and using the hotter/longer cycle.

Thanks all for your thoughts smile

SleepShake Thu 09-Jul-15 20:27:06

We had the exact same problem as you a couple of months! I went mad!

The solution is probably in the two arms. Take them both off, tap them hard on a hard surface and move them up and down and see if you can hear anything going up and down. We found a tiny piece of glass, and that was causing the huge havoc. Once that was removed, all the dishes came out clean!

GotTheKey Sat 11-Jul-15 14:36:49

Have you emptied the filter? It's gets filled with bit of food and crap. Also you can get a finish cleaner thing which you put into empty dishwasher and run a cycle through x

FiftyShadesOfSporn Sat 11-Jul-15 14:47:44

How do you clean the arms? I can see that mine have bits of gunge blocking the holes, but the most I can do is try to hook them out with a pin. Usually they get poked inside to appear again another day ...

PigletJohn Sat 11-Jul-15 15:17:11

the arms pull off, and you wash them out in the sink. Usually filling them from the tap, then shaking them with the central hole downwards will do it. The instruction manual will tell you how to remove them. If it is lost you can probably download it from the makers website, or email them with the identifying numbers which are probably engraved on the top edge of the door (unless you have Brillo'd them off)

domesticslattern Sat 11-Jul-15 15:19:56

Feel it when it is on to see if it is actually using hot water.
It took us months to figure out that our heating element was broken.

FiftyShadesOfSporn Sat 11-Jul-15 23:30:16

Thanks PJ. That always worked with my old dw, but not with the wanktastic Miele I stupidly replaced it with<<bitter>>

MrsJorahMormont Sun 12-Jul-15 15:40:29

This might sound obvious but make sure the dishes are rinsed before going into the dishwasher. DH is the worst offender - he chucks things in covered with food and pans with burnt on food which then loosens and floats all over everything angry

We use Fairy or Finish tablets and make sure there is salt in the machine too.

alibubbles Sun 12-Jul-15 17:56:14

Don't rinse your plates first, that is what causes problems! Miele say not to in the instruction manual and when they deliver a new machine they tell you not to either. WE have softened water and found that we needed to turn the water hardness selector down. We also had to extract some seeds from the holes in the swing arms, give the filter a really good clean too. Sometimes just poor loading makes it happen! ( DH guilty, we've only had a dishwasher for 36 years!)

BitOfABoost Sun 12-Jul-15 22:28:54

You do need to rinse of flaked almonds and muesli though - as this was what kept blocking the little holes on our dishwasher arms. Took an age of flushing out/digging at them with a pin to clear the blockages little fuckery bits. Since then we rinse the offending cereal bowls and have been blessed with proper cleaning again.

And yy - fishy smell quite possibly electrical problem

MrsJorahMormont Mon 13-Jul-15 22:35:03

How does it cause problems Ali? We get more problems when DH sticks in dishes covered in muesli and coleslaw and I extract slimy pieces from the filter and door seals after the fast 30 min wash!

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