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Dishwasher - Interior Staining

  • Gray and/or brown staining on the interior of a dishwasher tub can be a calcium or iron build-up. This is a water condition and may re-appear after cleaning.
    To remove these stains, do the following:

    1. Fill the detergent cup with citric acid crystals.
    2. Run the dishwasher through a normal cycle.

    3. Rinse thoroughly by running the dishwasher through another cycle without the crystals but with a full cup of detergent.
    4. A severe mineral build up may require a second treatment to remove all of the accumulation.

    Note: Generally, this procedure should be completed in an empty dishwasher. If dish and glassware have a mineral build up, they can be placed in the dishwasher during this process to remove the accumulated minerals. Never place silverware, aluminum items or other metals in the dishwasher during this process to avoid the possibility of tarnishing. Dishes or glasses with "patterns" should not be left in dishwasher when doing a citric acid treatment. Some"patterns"may be damaged or washed off.

    Citric acid crystals are sometimes called Sour Salt and are available at some drug stores and most grocery stores in the canning or spice section. GE Parts also stocks Citric Acid Crystals as part number WD35X151.

    Citric acid is available in liquid or crystal form. GE recommends crystals because they will remain in the detergent cup until the cup opens. Liquid citric acid may run out of the detergent cup before the detergent cup opens.

  • NOTE:Citric acid may be used in stainless steel interior dishwashers.

  • Red, pink or orange stains are most likely caused by a tomato-based product, such as pasta sauce. This stain is not easily removed, but will fade over time.


    Note: Citric acid will not have an effect on red, pink or orange stains.

    To keep this from happening in the future, remove any excess tomato sauce from your dishes before loading them in the dishwasher. Staining can also be minimized by running your dishwasher immediately after loading with dishes that have tomato sauce on them.


  • Rust stains are generally from one of three sources:

    1. Stains from objects placed inside the dishwasher such as pizza pans.
    2. Rust stains appearing to originate on stainless steel parts inside the dishwasher.
    3. Rust from the water supply.

    Rust stains from objects placed inside the dishwasher can usually be lightened or removed with a citric acid treatment. Follow the steps described above. To prevent a reoccurrence, keep those objects out of the dishwasher or prevent them from coming in contact with the dishwasher tub. This situation can occur on both plastic and stainless steel tub models.

    Rusting of the Calrod® heating element, stainless steel screws and stainless steel supporting brackets is usually caused by surface iron on those parts. This is cosmetic. The parts themselves are not rusting. The rust may show up on the part, on the tub bottom under the Calrod or on the tub surrounding the affected part. The rust stain can usually be be lightened or removed with the citric acid treatment described above. After one treatment the rust stains will usually not reappear.

    Rust coming from the house water supply could be the indication of a plumbing problem requiring the attention of a plumber. The water itself could also contain rust. There are many types of filters available through plumbing contractors that can aid in the control of rust.

    GE also recommends Iron-Out® for removing rust deposit from the interiors. Iron-Out® should be placed directly on the affected area for best results. DO NOT put Iron-Out® in the detergent cup & run it through a cycle.


  • Yellow stain or ring under the heating element: This is a build up of minerals that have come off the heating element during many dishwasher cycles This can be removed by wiping it with a mild cleanser and a towel. Use abrasive free cleansers on stainless steel tubs with this problem.

    An overall yellow staining is probably caused by minerals from the household water supply, coffee or tea and can be cleaned using citric acid. Information on using citric acid.


  • Green stains are typically caused by specific types of detergents that contain dye or color pigments. Some gel type detergents have been tested and proven to cause this staining after prolonged use. Switching to a different detergent is the best way to prevent these stains.


  • White stains/film on the tub are caused by hard water minerals. Over time, hard water build-up can cause damage to components of the dishwasher. You may want to consider installing a water softener. · Remove the mineral build up with the citric acid treatment described above.