TAKE OUT THE RACKS and scrub with mild detergent. Use a toothbrush to remove any gunk on the utensil holder. If you see exposed metal or nicks in the vinyl when cleaning your dishwasher, patch with a rubber coating like Plasti Dip ReRACK ($8.99 for a 1-oz. bottle; Ace Hardware).
REMOVE THE SPRAYER ARM Clean it using a cotton swab or toothpick to clear any buildup in the holes. Check the space under the arm for any food scraps.
CLEAN THE FILTER In newer models, this may involve some disassembly; set screws or any other hardware in a dish while you clean. Scrub the filter and parts with a soft brush.
WIPE DOWN THE DOOR GASKET Use a damp cloth dipped in distilled white vinegar, focusing on the bottom, where debris collects.
RUN THE DISHWASHER empty except for a bowl filled with two cups of white vinegar in the center of the lower rack, and it will be ready to report for duty once more.