Expert Tips on How to Clean Toys in the Dishwasher

Expert Tips on How to Clean Toys in the Dishwasher


A home with lots of toys is likely to be a busy one. But as busy as many families may be, keeping toys clean goes a long way in killing harmful germs and bacteria. The team at Lake Appliance Repair put together some quick and simple guidelines for how to clean toys in the dishwasher. Learn what toys are dishwasher safe and how to kill flu germs with ease.

Your Guide to How to Clean Toys in the Dishwasher

Your child’s favorite toys get exposed to bacteria everywhere, whether they’re dragged through dirt and dust or chewed on by tiny teeth. Our methods for how to clean toys in the dishwasher not only get toys clean but also disinfect them to kill harmful germs.

Can You Put Toys in the Dishwasher?

Do you know how often to clean baby toys? It’s recommended that favorite toys be washed weekly, while other toys can benefit from a monthly clean. Though this sounds like a lot of work, plastic toys can be safely washed in the dishwasher, making for easy and effective cleaning. These tips for how to clean toys in the dishwasher get the job done quickly and with little effort:

  • Place larger items like trucks and large cars in the bottom rack and medium-size toys in the upper rack
  • Toss small toys, rattles, and blocks in the silverware basket so they don’t slip through the racks
  • Use a gentle wash cycle with regular detergent to prevent damage
  • Turn off the heated dry function to avoid melting plastic and allow toys to air dry
how to clean toys in the dishwasher

Photo Credit: Fun Cheap or Free

How to Clean Toys After the Flu

Knowing how to clean toys after flu exposure can keep sickness from invading your home. In most cases, the dishwasher’s hot water and detergent are effective at killing the flu virus. Our suggestions for the best dishwasher detergent are specifically known for their ability to eliminate bacteria.

However, some natural cleaning agents can also help with how to clean toys in the dishwasher. Knowing how to disinfect toys with these natural products can bring greater peace of mind that flu germs are stopped in their tracks:

  • Pour ¼- ½ cup of white vinegar in the dishwasher’s rinse dispenser and run a gentle wash cycle with regular detergent
clean toys after flu

Photo Credit: Fun, Cheap, or Free

Toys You Shouldn’t Put in the Dishwasher

Knowing how to sanitize toys in the dishwasher is helpful for the numerous plastic toys many families collect. However, there are some toys that won’t survive even the gentlest dishwasher setting:

  • Battery-operated toys
  • Wooden toys
  • Toys with voice boxes or pull strings
  • Plush toys
  • Toys with loose or removable parts

To clean baby toys that can’t be washed in the dishwasher, a 1:1 solution of vinegar and water can still get them clean. Dip a clean cloth in the solution and wipe down the toys, allowing them to air dry. This method also works to spot clean plush toys that aren’t machine washable.

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