So you recently purchased that beautiful household item called a drying mat and after a while now you are wondering how to go about the process of cleaning it, right? Worry no more, this article is meant to show you how you can comfortably and thoroughly wash and get your dish drying mat sparkling clean if you follow the steps to the end.
Before we delve into the actual process of washing our dish drying mat, let me first explain what this precious and coveted household item is.
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Fact of a Dish Drying Mat
Take a scenario where you have just finished doing dishes and there’s still some water dripping from them after the final rinse. You’ll still need to dry off the water drops with a towel or a piece of cloth meant for that purpose. A lot of work, isn’t it? That’s where the dish drying mat comes in.
A dish-drying mat is a mat that is specifically made to meet the purpose of absorbing the water left on dishes after wash. All you are required to do is place your dishes upside down on the dish drying mat and leave them there for a while as the mat absorbs the dripping drops, leaving your dishes dry.
These wonderful mats come in different types, sizes and fabric. There are big ones, medium sized and small ones, designed according to your taste and preference. They are made from absorbent materials such as silicon, wool and microfiber.
Microfiber drying mats are very absorbent and can hold quiet a lot of water. This is the material of choice if do a lot of dishes by hand washing. Dishes placed on a microfiber dish drying mat are said to dry very fast according to reviews from people who used it. This dish drying mat is also very effective in holding delicate dishes and preventing countertops from scratches or damage that’s brought about by water.
If you are seeking for a mat that can hold very many glasses or plates then go for a silicone dish drying mat. Mats made of this material are ribbed thus allowing airflow which helps in drying the dishes quickly.
Dish drying mats are made in a variety of different desirable patterns and all you need to do is choose the one that matches your taste so as not to disorient the color of your kitchen counter and decor leading to a crash between the two. Some mats have double sided patterns so you get a very different pattern with every flip. What a value for your money! Right?
With the above information in mind, it’s best to note that just like any other household items, dish drying mats are very prone to dirt and things like mould which a tendency of harboring on damp materials like the mat. When this happens, we have no choice but to clean the dish drying mat in order to maintain it for longer and more effective services.
Materials and Tools For Cleaning Dish Drying Mat
In order to achieve the best results of a clean, mould-free and well dried dish drying mat, there are some tools and materials needed, just like when undertaking any task, one needs to get a plan and assemble all the required tools and materials for perfect results.
Tools and Materials
- Sink , bucket or basin
- Warm water
- Soft-bristled brush
- Dish liquid cleaner
- White Vinegar
- Lemon juice(optional)
- Anti-grease soap
How To Wash Dish Drying Mat
After gathering the tools and materials needed, now it’s time to get down to the actual business of washing the mat. On this, you have two choices, washing by hand or machine-washing. I’ll expound on both.
How To Hand-wash Dish Drying Mat
If you decide to hand wash your dish drying mats, you may want to try the following steps and options:
For this you’ll need a beater bar type vacuum cleaner. Vacuuming removes dirt and food particle that may have fallen on the dish drying mat in one of those day-to-day kitchen activities. This also helps in getting rid of any dust that may have clung on to the mat.
In case a vacuum cleaner is not available, you can get rid of the dust and food particles by beating the dish drying mat with a rod or by shaking it thoroughly. This activity has to take place outside or in an open area to avoid the particles from holding onto other items inside the room.
Mix the dish washing liquid cleaner with warm water inside the sink, bucket or basin. Place the dish drying mat inside the mixture and soak for a while. If the dish drying mat is greased, you can add anti-grease soap to the water instead.
Spread the mat across the sink, basin or bucket. If the sink or your container of choice is not big enough for the mat to spread strategically, then you can put it on the countertop near the sink and scrub gently using a cloth first, followed by the brush.
Keep dipping the mat inside the container or sink. If you have placed your mat on the countertop, keep scooping water and spreading it across the mat as you continue scrubbing.
Scrub vertically or horizontally from one side to the other until the whole mat is clean.
Removing Mold :
It’s not a strange thing for these dish drying mats to be infested with mold, given that they are damp from water droplets most of the time.
In order to completely get rid of the mould, you’ll need to drain the water you used for the first wash and fill the sink or your container of choice with more warm water.
Add white vinegar and lemon juice to the water to act as mold remover.
Place your mat in the mixture and continue scrubbing, as you inspect for the removal of molds and other remaining stains.
For this step, all you are required to do is drain the water with vinegar and put some clean and warm water.
Put the mat back into the water and rinse thoroughly. For perfect results, you can use a clean scrubbing brush and scrub gently through the mat inside the clean water, to get rid of any dirty water that might have clung to the mat from the first and second wash.
Using a Steamer :
If it has been a while since the last time you washed the dish drying mat, you can use a steamer on it to get rid of any remaining dirt.
In case you don’t have one, you can rent or hire one from cleaning agents.
After going through and completing these steps, now it’s time to dry our dish drying mat. It is recommended to dry the mat in the sun as opposed to machine drying it.
Shake the mat continuously then air it out in the sun.
How To Machine-wash Dish Drying Mat
This is the easiest way to clean the dish drying mat.
You have to first read the label on the mat that has instructions on how to care for it then set your washing machine accordingly.
Go outside and give the rug a vigorous shake to rid it of any dust and food particles.
Use light detergent and cold water, then adjust the machine’s settings to gentle cycle.
In order to get rid of mold, it is advisable to add some vinegar, one cap or more according to the size of your mat.
After the cycle is complete, air the dish drying mat in the sun to dry.
By now, I’m sure you are breathing a sigh of relief after reading through this article and realizing that you can now comfortably wash your dish drying mat without wondering where to start or what to do next after any of the steps.
If you are wondering how often you should wash your mat then don’t. There is no particular timetable. Just go ahead and wash it as often as you can but avoid doing it daily for the obvious reason, we don’t want it wearing out too soon.
With that, all I can do now is wish you happy washing as you embark on the actual activity.
Rita C. Donnell (Jennifer) has spent the last 26 years studying and practicing nutrition science. She has used a larger part of this time in improving people’s livelihoods. She has done so by coming up with unquestionable ideas on how to tackle food problems in her community. Readmore