Articles - January 25, 2023

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Clean a Commercial Dishwasher

Need a crash course on how to clean a commercial dishwasher?
If yes, this article is simply perfect for you. Follow these 7 steps and you will soon find yourself cleaning your commercial dishwasher like a piece of cake.

If you need further assistance, look for the correct manual for your specific machine. Or contact us and we’ll help you using our 35+ years of experience as a commercial dishwasher manufacturer.

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How to clean a commercial dishwasher

A commercial dishwasher is a fantastic piece of equipment; no more soaking and scrubbing dirty pots and pans for hours and hours by hand. Instead, you will find your team having more time to perform other chores and tasks that are more income-generating = great for your revenue. However, if you don't look after your dishwasher, and give it the tender love and care it deserves, it could lead to trouble. That's why we recommend you clean your solution on a daily basis. 

Below we'll teach you how to clean your commercial dishwasher for continued top-wash results day after day.

How to tell if your commercial dishwasher needs cleaning

1. Visible food scraps - Food scraps inside the machine are inevitable but should be cleaned up regularly.

2. Food particles left on washed ware - If this happens it might be a sign that your machine is too dirty to keep up the good work. 

3. A strong odor from the machine - This needs to be investigated. Why does it smell? It is most probably time for a good cleaning. 

4. A reduction in cleaning performance  - The washing results are far from top-notch and not good enough for your guests. 

5. Slimy residue of different colors - Not a good sign. It is most definitely time to clean your solution.

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How to clean your commercial dishwasher - in 7 simple steps

When you are done for the day it is time for the daily cleaning routine. 

1. Stop and empty. Stop the machine and open the drain valve to empty the wash tank.
2. Clean spray pipes. Switch off the main electrical switch and check and clean the spray pipes.
3. Grid and sieve. Clean tank grids, overflow sieve, and granule valve cover (if there is one).
4. Clean the inside. Wash the inside of the machine with water and wipe off the level sensor.
5. Washing of drip groove. The drip groove should also be washed cleaned and dried.
6. Clean the doors. Wipe door seals and inside the doors with a damp cloth.
7. Cleaning the top. The top of the machine should be wiped off at least once a month.

Note! We recommend that you check and study the user manual for your specific machine in order to conduct this process correctly.

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Our solution takes care of the entire washing process inside the machine and eliminates manual steps like soaking and scrubbing. You will get more done in less time with hourly capacities ranging up to 192 GN 1/1. Leave your details below and we will contact you shortly to discuss.

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How often should you clean a commercial dishwasher?

We recommend conducting your daily cleaning routine at the end of the day so your solution is easy to start and heat the next day. Follow the seven steps in one of the previous sections and check your specific manual if there is one. 

Long stoppages
If you know that you will not be using your solution for a longer period, any water remaining at the bottom of the tank should be removed with a sponge or similar absorbent. After a long stoppage, check the operation of the machine according to the service manual, possibly with the assistance of a service engineer.

Water change and service
Modern machines will most often indicate, for example, when it is time to change the wash water or schedule a service appointment. 


A lot of pots and utensils needs to be washed

What happens if I don't clean my commercial dishwasher?

The daily cleaning routine prevents the build-up of food residue inside the machine and discomforting odor and keeps the washing performance at a high level. Conducting periodical services is also important to keep your wash power but also to avoid expensive repairs and unnecessary breakdowns. 

It is really pretty simple: If you take care of your commercial dishwasher in a good way it will stay with you for longer and deliver clean pots, pans, plates, etc. for a longer period of time.

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How to descale a commercial dishwasher

If you, for example, have a tunnel machine you most likely have to descale regularly, as lime and grease tend to gather in the corners inside the machine.

Individual routines for individual machines
Descaler however is acidic and not very environmentally friendly – yet, necessary for tunnel machines. Just be sure not to apply this routine to all your machines. If you have a Granule ware washer, for example, descaling should not be needed as the granules and high-pressure water inside the machine will prevent build-up. If limescale still happens, it’s an indication that something is not working correctly and you should ask your detergent supplier to check your dosing levels.

A descaling routine could look like below:
1. Always use appropriate protective gear
2. Fill your machine with water
3. Add the descaler and leave it on for at least an hour (check the package instructions)
4. Run a full wash cycle
5. Check your solution - is the result satisfying? 
6. Clean your solution according to the manufacturer's instructions. 
7. Drain your dishwasher when done.

Note! Follow the instructions on the individual package for a proper and safe descaling routine.

Extra tips! Do not descale the machines at the end of the day. Then the machine is full of alkaline detergent so the descaling agent, which is very acidic, gets neutralized and has a poor effect. Ideally, you should fill a machine with new water (and if possible, turn off the detergent dosage) and then pour on the descaling agent.


Final thoughts

How to use and properly clean a commercial dishwasher might not be rocket science, but to become an expert you need to use your machine on a daily basis. That way you get to know the machine, how you load it correctly, and when and how it needs to be cleaned. Once you use it regularly you can fine-tune your usage, and cleaning process and run it as time efficient and sustainable as possible. 

Best of luck with your machine! 

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