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Modern home appliances of today are making our lives simpler and allowing us to concentrate time and energy onto other aspects of our lives by limiting the amount of time it takes to clean, cook, and perform other everyday household tasks.
But some of our appliances might be responsible for increasing populations of fungi and other harmful pathogens in our homes. To top it all off, some strains of fungi are actually beginning to become resistant to heat and detergents used in dishwashers to eliminate them.
So what can you do eliminate fungi in your dishwasher that survive well in high temperatures, high moistures, and high alkaline pH values?
Check out these 5 tips!
1. Let the dishwasher dry out
Since the fungi do survive well in warm and moist places, letting things dry out would be a good preventative. After the dishwashing cycle is done, get the clean dishes out and leave the door opened all day/night to dry out and cool down.
2. Make sure the water is getting hot enough
Although fungi do survive in warm temperatures, putting your dishwasher on a long sanitation cycle should, well, sanitize. Some dishwashers even have a steam clean option. Just make sure to let the dishwasher dry out afterwards to prevent any new growth from occurring.
3. Use a cup of vinegar
If you want to add a little bit of extra death to your sanitization cycle, add a cup of vinegar to the bottom of the dishwasher before the cycle begins.
4. Spray on some Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil, unlike bleach or bleach based detergents such as Cascade, is the most effective, natural antifungal and antibacterial. Tea tree oil is harmless to people and pets and a small amount goes a long way in fungi-killing power. You can buy tea tree oil for about $10 for a small bottle from most natural food stores. The technical name for the tree is the Melaleuca Alternifolia, so make sure the brand you buy is made from this tree (not all of them are).
To use tea tree oil, mix a teaspoon per every cup of water in a spray bottle. You don’t even have to wipe it away - just spray it in your dishwasher or other surfaces of your home as a cleaning solution. Leaving it on the surface will kill fungi and bacteria and will prevent it from returning.
Tea tree oil has a strong smell but will go away from the surfaces it is on after some time.
5. Rinse before you use
If it has been a few days since you last used your dishwasher and you forgot to let it dry out, give your dishwasher a quick rinse with a vinegar or tea tree oil solution before you wash your dishes.
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