Best Cleaners for Dishwashers

#1 Choice
Finish in-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner
#2 Choice
Affresh Dishwasher Cleaner
#3 Choice
Lemi Shine Natural Dishwasher Cleaner
Finish In-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner: Clean Hidden Grease and Grime, 12 ct
Affresh W10549851 Dishwasher Cleaner 6 Tablets Formulated to Clean Inside All Machine Models, Count
Lemi Shine Dishwasher Cleaner and Deodorizer, Removes Build-Up, Biodegradable Ingredients (8 Count) (Packaging may vary)
#1 Choice
Finish in-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner
Finish In-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner: Clean Hidden Grease and Grime, 12 ct
#2 Choice
Affresh Dishwasher Cleaner
Affresh W10549851 Dishwasher Cleaner 6 Tablets Formulated to Clean Inside All Machine Models, Count
#3 Choice
Lemi Shine Natural Dishwasher Cleaner
Lemi Shine Dishwasher Cleaner and Deodorizer, Removes Build-Up, Biodegradable Ingredients (8 Count) (Packaging may vary)

Last update on 2021-04-12 at 06:10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Dishwasher Cleaners Reviews

Buyer's Guide, Comparison and Advice

Undeniably, most people like to eat more than they like washing dishes. Dishwashers, therefore, are handy when it comes to dealing with the post-dinner aftermath. This useful appliance can turn your dishes from dirty to sparkling clean with no effort from your side, but just like a washing machine, it needs periodical maintenance.

Apart from the quality of the water – which can affect the lifespan of your unit – the grease from the dishes can also adversely affect the proper functioning of the unit.

To avoid nasty surprises when you need to use it the most, it is recommended to clean your dishwasher periodically.

And while there are many DIY methods to use, the most effective is undoubtedly that of running an empty cycle using one of the best cleaners for dishwasher – or use a smart in-wash cleaner to get the job done. Check out our selection below to find out which one to pick.

Our Reviews


Finish in-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner

Finish In-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner: Clean Hidden Grease and Grime, 12 ct
  • Cleans the hidden & vital parts of your dishwasher including spray arms &...
  • Contains 100% more grease removal actives
  • Removes hard water stains & lime scale build up
  • No extra wash cycle - Use during regular load of wash cycle
  • Powers away hidden grease & grime while freshening your machine

Last update on 2021-04-12 at 06:10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Finish is one of the most popular brands of cleaners for dishwashers, and their In-Wash Dishwasher Cleaner doesn’t disappoint. These cleaning tablets are super-easy to use and designed to clean hidden grease and grime while reducing water consumption.

Indeed, as their name suggests, you don’t have to run an empty cycle to remove all nasty buildup from your machine. Simply pair the product with the Finish Quantum detergent – place the cleaner tablet on the bottom of the dishwasher, under the basket – and run a normal wash cycle with the dishes in.

This two-in-one procedure is not only very effective, leaving both your dishes and the dishwasher fresh and clean, but it also saves a lot of energy and water, lowering your utility bills.

Cleaning procedure apart, what makes this dishwasher cleaner stand out is the Grease Removal Actives feature that acts not only on spray arms and filters but also on the hidden plumbing parts. Besides grease and grime, it also removes limescale buildup and hard water stains, for an overall freshening of your machine.

While all these features and convenience might cost you, this dishwasher cleaner is truly worth it. Just use it weekly for the best results.


Affresh Dishwasher Cleaner Tablets

Affresh W10549851 Dishwasher Cleaner 6 Tablets Formulated to Clean Inside All Machine Models, Count
  • Designed to power away lime and mineral build-up that can occur inside your...
  • Safe to use with stainless steel tub and plastic tub dishwashers
  • Recognized for safer chemistry by the EPA
  • Use once a month to keep your dishwasher fresher and cleaner

Last update on 2021-04-12 at 06:10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Affresh is an easy-to-use cleaner for dishwasher developed with convenience in mind. Not only it’s powerful enough to remove lime and mineral buildup from your appliance, but it’s safe to use with all kinds of dishwashers, including those with stainless steel or plastic tubs.

Safe chemistry and compatibility with most dishwasher detergents make it perfect for cleaning both the dishes and the appliance in one go.

Simply load the dishwasher, as usual, pour the detergent in the top tray and place the Affresh pod under the dish basket. Run a normal cycle, and you’re ready to go. Needless to say, this method saves both water and energy, helping you keep your utility bills low.

Sure, you can also run an empty cycle with the cleaner alone, should you want to, or if your dishes that can be easily damaged and don’t want to add anything other than the detergent when washing them.

Recommended by brands such as Whirlpool and Kitchen Aid, these dishwasher tablets also come at a price that won’t break the bank. No doubt, true value for money.


Lemi Shine Natural Dishwasher Cleaner

Lemi Shine Dishwasher Cleaner and Deodorizer, Removes Build-Up, Biodegradable Ingredients (8 Count) (Packaging may vary)
  • REMOVE HIDDEN BUILDUP: The Lemi Shine Dishwasher Cleaner uses powerful...
  • OPTIMIZE DISHWASHER PERFORMANCE: Lemi Shine’s biodegradable formulas...
  • ZERO HARSH CHEMICALS: At Lemi Shine, if an ingredient isn’t safe, we...
  • SAFE AND EPA CERTIFIED: Lemi Shine’s biodegradable formulas don’t...
  • FIGHT GUNK WITH CITRIC ACID: The citric acid works to destroy the DNA of...

Last update on 2021-04-12 at 06:10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A suitable choice for both standard and high-efficiency dishwashers, the Lemi Shine Natural Dishwasher Cleaner is one of your best options if you’re looking for an eco-friendly product. Certified as safe for the environment, this powerful cleaner is also very effective.

It is formulated to reduce limescale buildup, grease, grime, mold, and even rust from the machine’s pipes. Through its actions, it also sanitizes the dishwasher, making it safer for you and adding up years to its lifespan.

Unlike the tablet cleaners, this powder is not made to be used in tandem with a detergent. This could be inconvenient, as you’ll use more water and energy. However, it leaves your dishwasher cleaner.

Furthermore, you only have to use it once a month, rather than once a week, so you’ll still save some money. Coming in a pack of two 4-count boxes, you’ll be settled for more than half a year. Another thing you should know is that the product is also safe to use with septic systems for no-frills dishwasher cleaning, no matter your home arrangement.


Glisten Dishwasher Magic Machine Cleaner and Disinfectant

If your dishwasher needs a deep cleaning, or if you’ve just moved home and want to properly disinfect the appliance before using it, the Glisten Dishwasher Magic machine cleaner and disinfectant is undoubtedly your best ally.

Boasting a liquid formula, it’s as easy to use as the dishwasher detergent. Unlike the tablet cleaners, this one is not intended to use during the normal wash cycle. Instead, it is formulated to be used when running an empty cycle.

What makes it stand out is the antibacterial formula that not only removes mineral buildup and limescale, but that also disinfects against bacteria, reduces mold, and washes off grease.

Through all these actions, this dishwasher cleaner enhances the lifespan of your appliance. A fresher smell also prevents your dishes from catching a bad odor, which is great. More effective than other dishwasher cleaners, the product delivers great results even when used only once a month.

Good Luck - We Hope You Find What You Are Looking For

How to Choose the Best Cleaners for Your Dishwasher

Choosing a cleaner for your dishwasher may seem easy, but there are a few things you should consider before buying.

Cleaner type

There are three types of dishwasher cleaners, liquid, powder, and tablets. From all, tablets are the most convenient. Most manufacturers formulate them to be used directly during the normal wash cycle, so you’ll be able to save energy and water. However, some tablets don’t dissolve completely and may leave residues on the tub’s walls or pipes.

Liquid cleaners are also very easy to use. Together with the powder cleaners, they go into the detergent tray of the machine, and for this reason, they require you to run a separate, empty cycle. While you’ll consume extra water and energy, these cleaners are usually more affordable.

Cleaning frequency

Various dishwasher cleaner can be more or less effective in cleaning grease and grime, and the manufacturer will usually specify on the package how often you have to use the product. While there are some exceptions, tablet cleaners should be used weekly – usually during a normal cycle – whereas liquid and powder cleaners should be used once a month.


Last but not least, also check the formula. Chemical cleaners are typically more effective in removing limescale buildup, but they may be toxic for the environment. Natural formulas with citric acid as an active ingredient are not as harsh, but you can rest assured the product won’t harm marine life and that it’s eco-friendly. Ultimately, the choice is yours, based on the dishwasher use frequency, budget, and type of water in your area.

How to Clean a Dishwasher

Is your dishwasher dirtier than your dishes? Does it have a foul smell, and you’d rather clean your plates yourself rather than using the appliance? Then, it’s time to learn how to keep your dishwasher pristine. Yes, the dishwasher cleaner is part of the picture; however, it takes more than throwing a cleaner tablet in the basket or tray to keep it in good condition. So, roll up your sleeves and let’s get started.

1. Clean the filters

Like the washing machines, a dishwasher comes with various filters designed to prevent larger pieces of food from clogging the pipes, while also preventing food waste from getting back into the machine and on your dishes once it’s been washed off.

These filters should be cleaned at least once a week, under the kitchen sink tap with a soft brush or kitchen sponge.

2. Clean the door seals

The rubber seals that keep the door closed and prevent leaks create the perfect environment for mold and mildew to grow. Food stuck on the rim can also damage the seal, causing leaks. Luckily, this part is very easy to clean. Just wipe it with a damp cloth after each use, then leave the door slightly open to air dry it. Once a week, clean it with a baking soda and water solution and wipe clean.

3. Run an empty cycle at least once a month

Cleaning the interior of the machine, including pipes and spray arms, requires the use of a dishwasher cleaner or homemade cleaning solution. The secret to deep cleaning is running the cycle on the highest water temperature setting, and preferably without doing dishes at the same time.

Homemade cleaners include vinegar, baking soda, or citric acid. They all work pretty well; however, they don’t have the power of a professional cleaner when it comes to removing limescale and grime.

On the other hand, professional dishwasher cleaners are easier to use – just pour the liquid, add the powder, or place the tablet in the detergent compartment, and you’re ready to go. They save time and also clean better, as the concentration of active ingredients is just right.

If you choose a professional cleaner, pay attention to the type of product you use. Some are designed to add to a normal wash cycle. They work brilliantly, but you’ll usually have to use them weekly. Those that require an empty cycle run can keep your machine pristine when used monthly.

Dishwasher Cleaning Tips and Tricks

Proper maintenance is important for all appliances you own, but even the best cleaners for dishwashers can’t do miracles. If you want to make sure your machine will work properly for a long time, you should also follow the tips and tricks below.

Rinse food waste off the dishes before washing them in the dishwasher

This simple operation will help you prevent clogging the dishwasher. Furthermore, a quick rinse can also wash off a good part of the oil and grease from your dishes, so grime will take longer to buildup on the dishwasher’s pipes.

Pay attention to the dishwasher salt and rinse aid

If you’ve never been too concerned about the functioning of a dishwasher, perhaps you’re not aware that the machine comes with a salt container and rinse aid container that filters the water before entering the machine.

Salt stops limescale buildup by softening the water, and also enhances the efficiency of the detergent – most dishwasher detergents work better in soft water.

The rinse aid has the purpose of preventing hard water stains on your dishes, but it also prevents the interior of the dishwasher from staining. Luckily, most dishwashers have indicators that show you when to top up both products, so you should keep an eye on them.

Install a water softener on your main water pipe

Hard water will not only leave unsightly marks on the dishes, but it can damage your dishwasher. So, if you live in an area with very hard water – or if you’re using well water – it is recommended to install a water softener on the main water pipe.

In this way, the water softener will remove most minerals from the water before it reaches the dishwasher, while the salt will further soften it for enhanced functioning and prolonged lifespan of the machine.

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