Dishes Smell Bad After Washing Them

June 15, 2010

Dish rack filled with clean dishesAfter I run my dishes in the dishwasher, they have a strange odor to them. I have tried several detergents and had my water tested. I'm dumbfounded. Any ideas?


By brian from NY, NY


July 31, 20152 found this helpful
Best Answer

Look at your water. It is nothing to do with eggs, or your dishwasher, the water coming out of your taps has not been treated properly at source. Look up Hydrogen Sulphide in your water supply. Hope this helps. We have trouble here in France.

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August 31, 20150 found this helpful
Best Answer

It's not your dishwasher, water supply, dish soap, etc. When there are periods of high heat, humidity and dew point keep your windows and doors closed. The fresh (?) outside moist air is the reason.

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3 More Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

May 10, 2018

Why do my plates get a 'fishy' smell after being dishwashed? I tried to put white vinegar in after washing, but it was still smelly.


Diamond Post Medal for All Time! 1,246 Posts
May 11, 20180 found this helpful
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Run the machine with a diluted white vinegar solution then do the same for your sink (pour diluted vinegar down and run the disposal)

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July 15, 2014

I live in a townhouse and had to replace my simple dishwasher 6 years ago, and ever since then have had a rotten food smell on my dishes from the dishwasher. It is the most foul smell I have ever encountered. I have since then replaced my dishwasher twice to see if it is a problem with the dishwasher, have had 6 plumbers out to look at the plumbing and dishwasher, along with a specialist from the dishwasher manufacturer and no one can figure it out.

I am at the end of my rope and just want to move. Aside from tearing up the walls and replacing all the plumbing I don't know what to do. Does anyone know what this is from. Please help!

By Sheila S


July 17, 20140 found this helpful

There are a few dishwashing "tabs" that leave your dishwasher smelling foul. Unfortunately, I can't remember the name of the one I used that did this as it was only a sample. It made my dishwasher smell like vomit after I used it. I do remember it was one of those brightly colored combo tabs. After that, I only use the store brand of dishwasher tabs in the fresh scent.

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July 18, 20140 found this helpful

For the life of me, I can't figure out how your dishes could be smelly. Does the inside of the machine smell constantly as well? Does the water itself smell? You say you have replaced the dishwasher, and it still smells? If so, than it must be coming from the water or the plumbing. Does the water in your sink smell?


The plumbing that runs to your dishwasher is the same plumbing that runs to your sinks, so if the smell is somehow in the pipes or your water, it should be all over. Does everyone smell this foul odor or only you? Have you tried running the various things through your machine to clean it? People run a cycle with vinegar, or Tang, or citric acid, or commercial dishwasher cleaners, or baking soda (one thing at a time). You could even run one with a cup or two of bleach.

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September 30, 20170 found this helpful

I just read an article about this issue. New detergents do not contain phosphate due to new EPA rule, this makes them stick to the dishes and over time cause smell.


Solution: add 2 small spoons of white vinegar at the rinse cycle.

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October 16, 20170 found this helpful

We lashed out on a Miele dishwasher ( our first) for the first few weeks the dogs wouldn't stay in the kitchen with it because the smell of chemicals was so strong Tried several tablets but am now on Ecover but dishes glasses etc still small a bit How and where do you put in liquid detergents? Or the vinegar etc ? At the moment we are rinsing dishes before AND after the cycle - not really what I expected

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July 18, 20180 found this helpful

its your garbage disposal,clean it,the store sale tiny little citrus balls that clean it,i used them often,then smells gone,i can drink out of my glasses again

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December 30, 20180 found this helpful

Have you cleaned out the filter at the bottom of the dishwasher? Food collects on the stainless steel cover that lays over the drain. That as well as the medium sized cylinder gets all gunked up. Once a month, I take both pieces out and drizzle some Dawn over them, running hot water over them, while I use a course plastic brush over them, scratching every which way.


Clean the inside too, hanging it upside down. Then I rinse well, and replace. This might help.

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

October 27, 2009

Whenever I clean my counters with anything like Windex, dishsoap and water, Lysol, etc. afterwards my counters smell like a dirty, mildewy river.

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