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Revealed: how often people clean their kitchen appliances

Washing machines, ovens and dishwashers the least-cleaned appliances

The majority of Brits don’t regularly clean their home appliances, with washing machines, ovens and dishwashers likely to be cleaned the least, a new survey by AppliancesDirect.co.uk has revealed.

Many of us seem to be lacking in hygiene when it comes to cleaning these products. Some 71% of the 1,015 UK adults surveyed admitted that they don’t regularly clean their home appliances, with washing machines only cleaned once a year on average.

Worryingly, the survey also reveals that nearly a quarter of Brits have replaced their appliances more frequently as a result of lack of cleaning.

On the lookout for a new appliance? Go to our Best Buy washing machines.

The least-cleaned appliances in the home

After washing machines, the survey indicates that ovens and dishwashers are the least-cleaned appliances, with the average person cleaning them just two and three times per year respectively.

Fridges and microwaves tend to be cleaned slightly more often, with the average Brit cleaning them eight and 21 times per year respectively.

The survey reveals some questionable cleaning habits, but the thought of cleaning your appliances needn’t be something that fills you with fear – as our tips below show.

Clean your washing machine in four simple steps

Don’t put up with a putrid pong coming from your washing machine – follow these four easy steps:

  1. Run a regular service wash – Washing at 40°C or less is a great way to save money on energy bills and is better for the environment. But the lower temperatures mean that mould and bacteria can build up, especially if you use liquid detergents rather than washing powder. A service wash is a hot wash run when the machine is empty, ideally performed once a month. This will help kill the build-up of bacteria and should help to stop smells.
  2. Clean the rubber seal – Festering mould and bacteria in the rubber seal around the door hole can also be a source of smells, so cleaning it regularly can help prevent this.
  3. Wash the detergent drawer and lint filter – Watch our handy videos on cleaning the detergent drawer and strange noises in your washing machine to help you with this bit.
  4. Leave the door and drawer open – A simple but effective way to let air in after your wash and help combat mouldy smells.

Read our guide on how to clean a smelly washing machine for more information and to find out what to do if your machine still smells after you’ve completed all four steps.

Self-cleaning ovens

If you shy away from cleaning your oven, it may be worth buying an oven that cleans itself.

Ovens with self-cleaning catalytic liners are increasingly common. These are rough surfaces inside the oven that are designed to catch, absorb and break down food spills. When the oven is used at 200°C or higher, the food spills simply get burned away. However, some ovens only have liners at the back or on the roof of the oven, and the liners don’t clean the shelves for you, so you’ll still need to use some elbow grease.

If you really hate cleaning your oven, you may want to invest in an oven with a pyrolytic cleaning function. This is a super-hot cycle designed to reduce any baked-on cooking grime to ash that you can then simply wipe away. These ovens tend to be on the pricier side, but we’ve tested Best Buy ovens with this technology that cost as little as £380.

Find out more about self-cleaning ovens.

How to clean your dishwasher

A dishwasher cleans your dishes for you, so why would you need to clean it? Well, trapped food debris, blocked spray arms and unpleasant odours – the third most-common dishwasher problem reported in our own annual dishwasher reliability survey – are unfortunately all too common.

But more often than not, they’re easily fixable with a minimum of effort. The more often you clean the filter, the less unpleasant it is, and running the dishwasher empty and hot every six months is an easy way to help keep your machine running smoothly.

We reveal more top tips in our how to clean a dishwasher guide.

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