Got dishwasher stink? Let’s talk about the good (there is nothing good), the bad, and the solution to my dishwasher stink.

I gotta tell you about how I got my dishwasher and dishes to stop stinking. Because I tried it all.

I’ll give you a bit of background because I never could figure out why the machine stunk. It’s just me and my wife. Yes, we cook 3 times a day, just about every day (yes, that much, we work from home!), and it yields a lot of dishes, but not enough to run the machine every day. So, we do rinse the food off. We don’t wash, but we rinse off actual particles so that there’s not food pieces rotting in there for a couple of days, or three.

But eventually, we got dishwasher stink.

So I reached in there and cleaned it. Really well. The stink stayed.

I checked the filter and what nots, no food in there because, we rinse it off. The stink remained.

Some say don’t use cheap detergent. My wife buys Finish Ultra dishwasher tabs. Not cheap. The stink remained, and the dishes stink too!

My wife got out the trusty vinegar and baking soda, ran an extra hot cycle. THE. DISHWASHER. STINK. REMAINED.

To be honest, we were thinking about getting a new machine. Drastic, yes. But every time I took a sip from my coffee cup it smelled like wet dog and the dishwasher was giving the kitchen a funny funky smell.

There’s one more thing I forgot to mention: We run the dishwasher at night before we go to sleep.  It’s easy and the dishes are clean when we wake and we can unload them while coffee’s making.  We don’t have to be in the kitchen while that thing is heating it up. The dishwasher and the stove or oven together make for a very hot kitchen!

Then one day we didn’t run it at night. We ran it in the morning after breakfast, when we could open it up right after the cycle finished to let the heat and steam out.

The result…

Guess what y’all? No stink!  Thinking it was coincidence, we did it again in the day the next time we cleaned the dishes.  Still no stink!

Apparently, the steam was sitting in there all night causing smell problems.  Now, we run it, open the door to the machine and let it cool off. Pick up the dishes.  Repeat.  We also have a delay setting so we can set it to run at about 2 am and it’s just done when we wake up.

So if you’re having dishwasher stink that you can’t get rid of and you run your dishwasher while you’re sleeping or while you’re at work all day, try not doing that!  Try to set it for when you can be there when it’s done and you can open the door.
What are your tips and tricks to keep dishwasher stink from stinking you out?

9 thoughts on “How to Stop Dishwasher Stink Immediately!”

  1. I had the same issue, just bought a new Samsung stainless dishwasher and it began to stink!!
    We tried just about everything but no luck.
    After a counter full of remedies, the day came we found ourselves looking at new dishwashers.
    in talking with the salesperson we explained our predicament, within a second he asked “do you use pods?”
    Surprised by the quick response we replied “yes, they are so easy” salesperson: “there’s your problem”
    He was correct, we got rid of the pods went back to liquid and no stink!!
    The pod isn’t fully dissolving causing a residue aka….. Stink!

  2. Been through your entire scenario. Unfortunately, we still tend to get this awful “fish piss” essence that clings to our dishes very blue moon. So frustrating!

    1. Could be food stuck in the “food trap” part of the dishwasher. Sorry, not sure what the technical term is. But I agree, so freaking frustrating!

  3. Don’t you love simple answers that do not cost anything. I am happy that you worked it out by accident. Lots of things are discovered by accident, who knows what you will discover next.
    Blogger’s Pit Stop

  4. I think part of it is that the steamy environment allows additional bacteria to grow. That’s my theory. I’m not sticking to it, but it’s my theory. Thanks for taking a look Milena! Love your site!

  5. Ha! This is great to know. I guess certain bacteria that can withstand the highest of temps can incubate and cause unpleasant odors if allowed to live in the hot steam environment for a while before you open the door… I’m going to have to research this:)!

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