Can Drano be used in a dishwasher? (+3 ways to go)

In this article, we will answer “Can Drano be used in the dishwasher”.

A dishwasher is one of the most important and useful appliances that make our work easy by cleaning stacks of dishes without any hassle. 

If your dishwasher isn’t cleaning your dishes properly that indicates the time to have a deep look into your dishwasher and clean the filter. A dishwasher has a pump that flushes water out of the appliance. What if the dishwasher is not draining properly? Most of the time it isn’t a problem. Something might be blocking the drain filter or choking up the garbage disposal. But the question is.

Can Drano be used in a dishwasher

The answer is No. You should never use Drano to unclog the dishwasher drain. 

Drano is a household drainage cleaner, made up of sodium chloride, sodium nitrate, hypochlorite (bleach), sodium hydroxide, and aluminum. Which helps clean clogged sink, tub, and shower drain pipes. But never use it to clean the toilet or the drainpipe of your dishwasher. It won’t do any good and may harm the pumps and seal of your dishwasher.

When mixed with water, the chemicals in the Drano generate a large amount of heat. The heat, along with the chemical’s ability, can clean the clogged pipes. The intensity of this heat can damage the plastic pipes. However, drain pipes used in the dishwasher are relatively thin and fragile. Hence, using Drano to clean the drain pipes of your dishwasher can harm and damage it.

Ways to clean the drain pipes of a dishwasher

Pro tip: 

Before, you get into your dishwasher to clean it, using any product the best way you can. It is ideal to consult the user’s guide from the manufacturer for the cleaning tips.

  • Clean the filter

If you see the standing water in the dishwasher after the first cycle completes, the first thing you can do is to clean the filter of your dishwasher. Remove all the dishes and racks from the dishwasher. Clean the filter by putting it under the clean running water to prevent clogging and improve the drainage system of your dishwasher. It is ideal if you do this regularly to avoid any serious issues.

  • Clean the garbage disposal

After cleaning the filter, the other cause of standing water in the dishwasher with a stinky smell is the blockage of garbage disposal. Runoff the garbage disposal to loosen up the clogs. 

After cleaning the garbage disposal, you can also touch upon the drain hose. Lay a towel underneath the drain hose or you can also use a straight hanger to clean the clogged hose.

  • Fix the air gap

Air-gap is another cause of backing up the water in the dishwasher. You can find an air gap next to the faucet. If the air gap is clogged, it won’t let your dishwasher work properly. To clear the air gap, take off the cap and remove all the debris that you see.

In case, if you see any constant issue, and can’t figure the issue on your own. It is best to seek the help of a professional plumber.

  • Homemade solution for breaking up the clogs

Another way to clean the clogged drain is to use a mixture of vinegar, baking soda, and hot water. First, pour a mixture of vinegar and baking soda down the basket at the bottom of your dishwasher. Then, leave it for 10-15 minutes Finally pour hot water down the basket to clear any clog.

Other than this, you can also use some drain cleaning products available in the market and online.

Do’s and Don’ts of cleaning a dishwasher

  • Pre-rinse your dishes to remove food particle
  • Clean the filter of your dishwasher occasionally 
  • Go through the user’s guide before using any cleaning product
  • Read and follow the instructions mentioned in the user’s guide of your appliance
  • Don’t overload the dishwasher
  • Don’t use too much washing detergent
  • Never use a drain cleaner like Drano to clean the clogs. It can harm the drain pipes of your dishwasher.


In this article, we answered, “Can Drano be used in the dishwasher”.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.