How To Clean Old Whirlpool Dishwasher Filter? | Advice

Cleaning the filters in your Whirlpool dishwasher is crucial for maintaining peak performance. The filters are composed of an upper filter assembly and a lower filter located at the bottom center of the unit. The upper filter assembly safeguards the pump from foreign objects, oversized items, and very fine food particles.

The lower filter stops any food from recirculating back onto your dishes during cleaning. It is necessary to clean the filters, and we will demonstrate how to clean an older Whirlpool dishwasher below.

Here is How to Clean Old Whirlpool Dishwasher Filter

Step-1: Locate the Dishwasher Filter

The first step in removing your dishwasher filter is to access the bottom. This can be done by lifting the lower dish rack to remove it and expose the bottom of your machine. Depending on your model, you may find that the filter is located in either a back corner or around the base of the bottom spray arm.

The filter usually comprises two parts: an upper and lower assembly. To remove it, give the upper filter a quarter turn clockwise before letting it loose. Once this is done, gently lift and pull forward on the lower filter section to completely remove it from its place.

When replacing parts of your dishwasher, like filters, it’s important to check that they are compatible with your specific model before installation to ensure they will function properly in future use and not risk further damage to other components.

Any additional process, such as cleaning or testing, must also be carried out before replacing them after replacement. Following these steps carefully ensures you have had a healthy and efficient running dishwasher for many years.

Step-2: Clean Your Filter

The dishwasher is a valuable asset in the kitchen, but unfortunately, it requires regular maintenance to ensure that it works properly. One of the key steps in maintaining your dishwasher is ensuring that you clean your filter regularly. A dirty filter can cause food particles to remain on dishes after they have gone through the washing process and affect your machine’s overall efficiency.

First, you should run water over your filter to remove most soil. This step will help eliminate the most basic grime and dirt. You may need to use a soft brush with dish soap on these tougher spots for deeper stains and calcium deposits.

However, don’t remove any rough scrubbing materials such as wire brushes or scouring pads – these could damage the filter itself. Regularly cleaning your dishwasher filters can make all the difference for your dishes to come out sparkling clean every time.

Step-3: Put the Filter Back in the Tub

Replacing the dishwasher filter is a reasonably simple task that can be completed quickly with the right instructions. The first step is to return the lower filter to its original position at the bottom of the tub.

Line it up properly so that when you set it in the upper filter, it will fit into place and won’t move freely. Push down on both sides of the upper filter until it slides easily over the tabs of the lower one and into an opening at the top of it.

When you finish placing it securely, turn clockwise until you feel resistance- this means that they are now locked into place. Be sure to check this, as your dishwasher will not work unless your filters are safely secured and do not turn easily. With these few easy steps, you can ensure your dishwasher is running like new with a clean, secure filter.

Manual Cleaning

Manual cleaning dishwashers can seem less intimidating when it comes to managing them. Once a month is a general rule; however, this frequency may vary depending on how often the appliance is used; for some people, that might be every week or two. People who have pre-rinsing habits will find themselves cleaning their dishwashers more often.

More frequent cleaning may also be necessary if one notices unpleasant odors or food residue in or around the dishwasher after use. Visual and olfactory cues are important indicators of when cleaning should happen and should not be overlooked, as ignoring these signs could lead to further issues down the line.

Frequent checkups are recommended for manual cleaners as it helps maintain optimal performance levels and keeps things running effectively and hygienically.

Cleaning the dishes and wiping off any water droplets within the machine will help avoid the buildup of bacteria, fungi, mineral deposits, grease, food particles, etcetera, leading to better overall health/maintenance of your appliance.

How Do I Know Its Time to Clean the Filter?

Possibly one of the most neglected parts of any dishwasher is the filter. Keeping a regular check and cleaning it out might sound like a chore, but ensuring the dishwasher runs correctly is essential. Cleaning the filter requires removing, examining, and maybe rinsing if necessary. It is important to do this routinely, as a dirty filter can lead to decreased performance and water pressure and cause smelly dishes.

If there is visible food or solid particles within the filter after a wash cycle, it’s time to go ahead and clean it as soon as possible. If a delay or worsening of the cleaning process is apparent, then it could definitely mean that something is blocking the filters inside that needs your attention.

Additionally, if stubborn food particles remain on dishes even after they have been washed, then this should be an alarm for you to inspect your dishwasher’s filter. Upon washing, you should also be able to tell whether it’s time for a good clean: an obvious grime or gritty feeling on dishes are dead giveaways.

How to Clean Food Particles?

Cleaning food particles from the dishwasher is an inevitable part of regular cleaning and maintenance. One filter brand, Whirlpool Extended Dishwasher Filter, is specially designed to capture and remove food particles more efficiently. This reduces the chance that small food particles will clog the filter, resulting in it not working as effectively.

To ensure that you thoroughly clean any accumulated food debris, use a vacuum with an extended tube attachment or an old toothbrush are good methods to use. First, take off your dishwasher’s bottom tray to access the filter screen. Then carefully brush away any visible debris with either the vacuuming tool or toothbrush – if necessary, soak the filter for several minutes first in warm water for particularly difficult parts.

Finally, once all visible pieces of food are removed from both sides of the filter screen and bottom tray, you can be sure that your dishwasher is free from any clogging particles.

How to Clean Oily Grime?

Removing oily grime from a Whirlpool dishwasher filter can be a tedious but necessary task. The first thing to do is soak the filter in a mixture of hot water and laundry soap for around fifteen minutes to loosen the buildup.

This should be followed by scrubbing with a soft brush or cloth, being careful not to damage the surface of the filter. When removing as much grime as possible, rinse off the item with running water and then return it back into your dishwasher.

For particularly stubborn stains that won’t budge, combine baking soda and white vinegar together to make a paste that can be used like a light abrasive scrubber on the affected area. Use an old toothbrush or soft brush and light pressure, and once done, rinse off with clear running water before reinserting it into the dishwasher.

Regularly using this cleaning method will help keep your Whirlpool dishwasher filter free from buildups of grimy oil and other unsightly residues.

Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]

1. Where Is A Filter In An Older Model Dishwasher?

The filter of your dishwasher is located on the tub floor. It can be found near the base of the bottom spray arm or in one of the back corners. Pull out the lower rack to expose the bottom to access the filter. Once you locate it, examine the filter closely.

2. How Often Should I Clean My Whirlpool Dishwasher Filter?

For optimal performance, your Whirlpool dishwasher filter should be cleaned every month or two. Regular cleaning helps ensure that the filter remains free of dirt and debris, which can affect its efficiency and potentially cause water pressure issues. Additionally, if certain dishes are not coming out as clean as they should, it may be time for a filter clean.

3. Does A Dirty Filter Affect The Dishwasher?

Yes, a dirty filter can affect your dishwasher. If the filter is clogged with food debris or other materials, it can restrict water flow and reduce the effectiveness of the cleaning process. Additionally, a dirty filter can cause unpleasant smells to come from the dishwasher and potentially damage the internal parts if dirt and grime are allowed to build up. To keep your dishwasher running in top condition, it is important to clean the filter regularly.

4. Will Vinegar Unclog The Dishwasher?

Vinegar is an effective and natural cleaner and can be used to unclog a dishwasher. To use it, mix vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio and pour the mixture into the dishwasher’s filter. Allow the solution to sit overnight for several hours before running a complete cycle on the dishwasher with hot water. The vinegar should help loosen any clogged debris and restore your dishwasher’s normal performance.

5. Is It Safe To Put Vinegar And Baking Soda In The Dishwasher?

Vinegar and baking soda are natural cleaning agents that can be used safely in a dishwasher, depending on the type of dishwasher. The combination of vinegar and baking soda is often used for deep-cleaning applications, such as cleaning old grime off the inside of a dishwasher.


It is important to regularly clean your Whirlpool dishwasher filter to keep it running efficiently and avoid potential damage. The easiest way to do this is by using hot water and laundry soap, then scrubbing with a soft brush or cloth. For tougher grime buildup, use a combination of baking soda and vinegar as a paste-like abrasive cleaner.