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Dishwasher Tips


  • Don't confuse scraping with washing: No one wants to wash their dishes before they wash their dishes; it's just silly. But you wouldn't want to eat a Thanksgiving dinner and then go run a marathon right after. Well, neither does your dishwasher. Scrape food bits off before loading up to help reduce particles stuck on dishes once the cycle is over.

  • Don't overcrowd the dishwasher: It's something that's easier said than done. It's quite tempting to layer in one more bowl or plate to avoid hand washing. Just remember, it's better to wash a few pieces by hand than it is to rerun an entire load because things were too tightly packed.

  • Run hot water before starting the dishwasher: Before starting the cycle, turn on the faucet and run until the water is hot to the touch. This means your first dishwasher fill cycle will be hot, instead of cold, until it finally makes its way over from the hot water heater. This is an especially important tip in winter time, as it takes longer for the water to heat up. 

  • Use the correct cycle: It can be tempting to use a shorter, lighter setting to save on time and water bills, but make sure you're washing all your super dirty dishes by hand if that's the case. Just like doing your laundry, keep soil levels together when washing to end up with the best performance.

  • Don't double up on rinse aid: When looking to purchase a new soap for your dishwasher, make note if it includes a rinse aid. If it does, then there's no need to add any extra. If it doesn't, skip the extra purchase and just fill the reservoir with white vinegar. It'll do the trick every time!

  • Run an empty dishwasher with vinegar: It’s the same concept as running a vinegar load in your washing machine. You simply toss a cup of white vinegar into the bottom of an empty dishwasher and run a normal cycle. It cleans out old food particles to keep your dishwasher smelling fresh.

  • Clean the dishwasher trap: Down in no-man's land, under the lower sprayer, there's usually a piece that is removable. Under it you'll usually find bits of food that didn't make it out the drain. Sometimes the tray comes out fully so it can be rinsed in the sink; sometimes a towel is needed to remove the gunk buildup.

  • Clean the dishwasher seals: After a few months of use, your dishwasher accumulates a little bit of ick and stick around the rubber gasket in the door and often around the soap door as well. Make sure to give them a once-over with a damp towel to keep the grime down.

  • Check your water heater's temperature.  Make sure your water heater is set between 120 and 125 degrees. (many units are shipped new set to a much lower heat.) This is the ideal temperature for washing dishes; don't be tempted to turn it higher or else it will cause water to flash dry and not roll off your dishes, taking the ends of the dirty bits with it.

  • Test your water: Hard water is killer on dishes and your ability to really get things clean. Make sure to have things tested and soften accordingly.

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Attempting to repair a dishwasher without the proper training and safety standards is dangerous.


Dishwashers should only be repaired by skilled professionals who have the knowledge and experience to safely bring them out of disrepair. Repairs performed by unqualified people risk serious injury or even death. A relatively small outlet can easily carry the current needed to kill a person.


To reduce the need of repairs, use the following preventative measures. Proper maintenance and care is essential in keeping your dishwasher running efficiently. Improper care will cause your unit to over work by using more electricity to keep your dishes clean than if properly maintained. By following these tips, you can prolong the life of your dishwasher and avoid many costly repairs.


Money saving tips that will extend the life of your dishwasher and lower your energy consumption!


  • Regularly use a cup of white distilled vinegar through a complete cleaning cycle of a fully loaded dishwasher. This will gently  clean residues, odors and debris from your dishwasher and keep your glass wear clear.

  • If your dishwasher has a filter underneath the lower spray arm, remove all debris and rinse to protect the pump and motor seals. Replace if it has holes. A dirty filter may cause the dishwasher to not drain.

  • Keep the holes in the spray arms clear, use a tooth brush or soak in vinegar and warm water. Make sure to remove all debris and residues. Doing this regularly will remove the stress on the pumps and motor.

  • Do not overload your dishwasher. This will result in poor cleaning.

  • Check drain hoses are not impeded from draining. Remove kinks and other stoppages. Improper draining may cause the pump to overheat and burn out.

  • Do not add more than the recommended amount of detergent. To much detergent cause leaks and etching of glass wear.


By following these tips, you can prolong the life of your dishwasher and avoid many costly repairs.However, there are times when a repair is needed. Here at North County Appliance Repair we are capable, and happy to help with any repairs you need help with. 


Please call (760) 842-6111 for fast, reliable professional service. Our technicians are standing by and ready to relieve you from your dishwasher problems

North County Appliance Repair assumes no risk or responsibility in the provision of any and all information and warnings in this web site. All information is provided as-is. User assumes all risk. If you do not understand or do not accept these terms, please do not use this site or its services.

We offer dishwasher repair in the following cities:

Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea,Carlsbad, Solana Beach, 

Oceanside, Camp Pendleton,

 San Elijo Hills, Del Mar,
Rancho Santa Fe,

 Vista, Carmel Valley, San Marcos, Valley Center, Escondido, UTC, La Jolla,  Poway, Fallbrook, Leucadia

5/5 Stars on Yelp

Mike W.   March 7, 2016

We've used north county appliance repair a few times and it was always a good experience. Pablo is really pleasant to work with and i feel very comfortable having in my home.  The last time he came over to check on my washer he recommend it wasn't worth saving and to replace it. he could have easily tried to sell us and fixed it knowing it wouldn't last, but he didn't and that was very honest of him. 

Great service will recommend.

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