Our busy lives make it hard enough to stay on top of major cleaning tasks like vacuuming and mopping. But when you start to factor in all the little things around the house that need to be cleaned too—yikes! It’s discouraging to feel like you simply don’t have enough time or energy to stay on top of it all.
It would be easier if you had some help, right? Well you may already have all the help you need! I’m referring to those handy cleaning machines that live in your house: the washing machine and the dishwasher. I’ve already written a post about things you can clean in your washing machine (which you can read at the link below!) So today we’ll be exploring things you can clean in your dishwasher. It may seem strange, but once you’ve read this post, I think you’ll see just how helpful it can actually be!
Guidelines For Cleaning With Your Dishwasher
- Only sturdy and heavy-duty items should go in the bottom rack of your dishwasher. Everything else should into the top rack to protect it from damage. If you’re not quite sure where a certain item should go, I would choose the top rack to be safe!
- Unless something is really grungy, you can wash is alongside your dishes without worry. Your dishwasher is designed to clean and sanitize things, so you don’t have to worry about non-dish items dirtying up the dishwasher.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get down to business, shall we? :-)
19 Things You Can Clean In Your Dishwasher
1. Silk Flowers
Say goodbye to that stubborn layer of dust and grime on your faux flowers! If they aren’t completely dry after washing, allow them to air dry before putting them back on display.
2. Baseball Caps
Toss sweaty and dirty ball caps into the top rack of your dishwasher to clean them. (This used to be a no-no back in the day because hat brims were typically made of cardboard. Today nearly all ball caps are made with plastic brims that are perfectly safe to wash!)
3. Flip Flops
If your sandals are looking grungy after all your summer fun, toss them in your dishwasher to clean them up.
4. Vacuum Attachments
When was the last time you cleaned your vacuum attachments. (I can’t remember ever doing it, which is not a good sign.) Clean all that grime off by tossing them in the top rack.
Unless your hairbrush is made of wood or has natural bristles, you can clean it in your dishwasher. (Just try to remove as much hair from it as possible beforehand!)
6. Gardening Tools
Your dishwasher can help blast away all the dirt and grime that’s stuck to your trowel.
7. Exhaust Fans
Is your bathroom exhaust fan looking dusty? That dust can keep your fan from working properly. Non-electrical parts are easy to clean in your dishwasher. (For more on cleaning your bathroom fan, read my post below!)
8. Kitchen Sponges & Brushes
Even your cleaning tools need cleaning occasionally! Especially germ magnets like kitchen sponges (or brushes, if you use them.)
9. Silicone Hot Pads & Trivets
Silicone is such a great material for kitchen use, because it can withstand high temperatures and it’s easy to clean. Just toss your silicone hot pads, trivets, oven mitts, and other items into the top rack to clean them.
10. Microwave Turntables
Microwave spills happen, and the turntable usually takes the brunt of the mess. Just load that messy turntable into the bottom rack of your dishwasher to clean it up!
Use your dishwasher to clean all the plant gunk out of the bottom of your vases. Sturdier glass and ceramic vases should be fine in the bottom rack, but thin ones should go into the top rack.
12. Fridge Shelves & Bins
Another frequent location for spills (at least in my house) is inside the fridge. You can clean both your fridge shelves and the bins by loading them into either rack in your dishwasher.
13. Covers For Light Fixtures, Switch Plates, & Outlets
The plastic covers on your switch plates and outlets can get grimy over time. And light fixture covers can take on a scorched look or become a graveyard for dead bugs. Clean them all with ease in your dishwasher!
14. Air Vent Covers
The vent covers for heating and/or air conditioning ducts are another repository for dust and grime. Load them into the top rack to give them a good cleaning.
15. Desk Accessories
Cleaning all the knick-knacks on your desk can take forever. A lot of that stuff can go right into the top rack of the dishwasher, like pencil cups, paper organizers, and small trash cans.
16. Soap Dishes & Toothbrush Holders
Get your bathroom accessories looking good as new! Your soap dish, toothbrush holder, and other such items can go right into the top rack.
17. Loofahs, Sponges, & Brushes
The sponges and scrubbers you use in the bath can get bogged down with soap scum and product residue over time. A quick wash can give them new life!
You can clean all kinds of kids’ toys in your dishwasher! Think small toys, bath toys, blocks, etc.
19. Pet Stuff
A surprising number of pet items can go into your dishwasher! Use it to clean your pet’s food and water bowls, synthetic collars and leashes, and plastic toys.
Have you ever cleaned something other than dishes in your dishwasher?