If you own a dishwasher, it’s likely a kitchen convenience you can’t do without. But the abilities of this helpful appliance extend much further than the kitchen. You can safely use it to clean a variety of household items with ease! What can be cleaned in a dishwasher? You may be surprised by what this labor-saving device can do…

The Do’s and Don’ts of What Can Be Cleaned in a Dishwasher

Cleaning abilities aside, the dishwasher’s steam and hot water can also sanitize, safely destroying germs without harsh chemicals. So, what items are dishwasher safe? Our list includes those that benefit from this sanitizing power as well as those that should remain hand-washed.

Dryer Lint Filters

When it comes to what can be cleaned in a dishwasher, dryer lint filters may not be your first guess. But washing a lint filter in the dishwasher is a quick way to get rid of lint, dirt, and dryer sheet residue. This not only cleans the filter, but also helps your dryer function more efficiently.

Refrigerator Shelves and Bins

Though our dishwasher loading tips suggest these bulky items should be washed separately, refrigerator shelves and bins can benefit from a good cleaning. This is one of those dishwasher hacks that not only sanitizes, but also saves a lot of scrubbing.

Sanitize Kids Toys

Of all the things you can clean in the dishwasher, kid’s toys can have the most benefits. Small items like plastic blocks and toy cars fit right in the silverware basket while teethers and rattles are easily sanitized on racks. Avoid a meltdown in every sense of the word by hand-washing plastic dolls and painted items that could melt in hot water.

what can be cleaned in a dishwasher

Image from Choice Home Warranty

Makeup Brushes

Makeup brushes not only top the list of what can be cleaned in a dishwasher but are items that should be cleaned regularly. With frequent use, they can quickly become laden with dirt and bacteria that can compromise the skin. To ensure your skin stays protected, use a gentle, non-toxic cleanser instead of detergent and clean the brushes separately from other items.

Baseball Caps

Dishwasher cleaning hacks were just made for stained, smelly baseball caps. Make sure to place the cap on an empty top rack to help it hold its shape and preserve the delicate brim. Using Borax instead of dishwasher detergent will also remove stains more effectively. 

dishwasher cleaning hacks

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Garden Tools

Since garden tools spend most of their time in the dirt, they could use a good washing. However, avoid putting tools with wooden handles in the dishwasher, as the high heat can crack or damage the wood. If the tools are especially dirty or coated in chemical fertilizer a little post-cleaning dishwasher maintenance can keep it clean and fresh.

What Items are NOT Dishwasher Safe?

While multiple items can benefit from a dishwasher cleaning, there are certain objects that can actually be compromised. What items are not dishwasher safe? These common household tools should remain hand-washed:

  • Cast Iron Skillets: The seasoning on these skillets can get stripped away in the dishwasher. A wipe and a quick rinse is usually all the cleaning they require.
  • Wooden Cutting Boards: Immersing wood in water will lead to cracks that can house harmful bacteria. Instead, use a cloth soaked in soap and hot water to wipe down your board after each use.
  • High-Quality Knives: Knives that have a special purpose, like a boning or chef’s knife, should always be hand-washed. Their high-quality, metal blades can be discolored by dishwasher detergent or dulled by water jets.

The dishwasher repair experts at Oak Valley Appliance can answer any question about your hard-working kitchen appliances. From what can be cleaned in a dishwasher to performing an expert repair, we have all your needs covered.