How to Clean an AeroGarden

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I love growing my own fruits and vegetables with my AeroGarden. My AeroGarden has been giving me a variety of fresh produce for years now. However, after a while, things get dirty and need cleaning.

It’s best to clean your AeroGarden between plantings. Be sure you to clean the AeroGarden before planting new seed pods. That will keep your AeroGarden safe for new plants to flourish and grow strong. 

Learn how to properly care for and clean your AeroGarden to help your seeds and plants grow healthy. Let’s first cover what materials you need to clean your AeroGarden.

How to Clean an AeroGarden

Materials Needed for Cleaning an AeroGarden

To start cleaning your AeroGarden, first make sure you have the following items before beginning:

1. A Clean Cloth or Paper Towels 

The clean cloth or paper towel will help clean harder to reach areas and parts that shouldn’t be underwater, like the lights and touch screen displays. Dampen the cloth or paper towel with a warm water and white vinegar solution.

2. Warm Water

Warm water will help loosen dirt better than cold water from areas of the AeroGarden. Warm water will also help dissolve the white vinegar or bleach when mixing the cleaning solution. 

3. White Vinegar or Bleach

White vinegar and bleach help remove stains and odors from the AeroGarden as well as kill bacteria. Bleach contains harsh chemicals, so choose vinegar if you want a natural cleanser. They both contain their own unpleasant smells, but vinegar will dissipate faster. 

4. Large Bowl

This holds the vinegar and water solution to act like a sink to submerge parts of the AeroGarden for cleaning. Be sure it’s big enough to fit different parts of the unit for soaking. 

5. Rubber Gloves

Using rubber gloves will protect your skin from the cleaning solution, especially if you’re using bleach. 

8. Toothbrush

A toothbrush will help you reach into the hard-to-clean nooks and crannies to clean.

How to Clean an AeroGarden Step-by-Step 

Before we get into the steps, a safety precaution note: Make sure to unplug the AeroGarden and there’s no electricity running in the AeroGarden. Do not plug anything into an electrical outlet with water nearby.

Read through the entire instruction manual for your AeroGarden unit before taking any steps to disassembling it. 

Step 1: Disassemble the AeroGarden

Prepare the AeroGarden and all of its parts and pieces to be cleaned by disassembling it. Disconnect and remove the light hood.

Separate the AeroGarden base and bowel from each other, so they can be cleaned individually. Remove any other remaining parts and pieces you have on the AeroGarden.

A good tip is to take pictures of where parts go if you think you might forget how to put parts back together again. 

Step 2: Set Up the Vinegar or Bleach Bath 

This is where AeroGarden parts will submerge and soak in. Most parts and pieces will be able to fit into the bowl except of the AeroGarden bowl and light hood. 

Put about a gallon of warm water into the large bowl and mix it with a cup of white vinegar or bleach by stirring.

Leave the AeroGarden parts in the bowl for 20-30 minutes. In the meantime, you can start sanitizing and cleaning the AeroGarden bowl. 

Step 3: Sanitize the AeroGarden Bowl

The large AeroGarden bowl has water that flows through it that creates this popular hydroponic garden. Since it’s large, you most likely won’t be able to submerge the whole AeroGarden bowl in the vinegar bath like the smaller parts.

Since the water is flowing through the unit, bacteria or mold might start forming inside the base of an AeroGarden if there’s too much moisture present. You’ll want to use some of the vinegar solution to flow through the unit in the same way to clean the bacteria and mold that might’ve developed.

Empty out any remaining water from the bowl before starting. Pour the vinegar or bleach solution into to the AeroGarden bowl and turn it on to circulate the solution. Run it for about 5 minutes to allow the solution to clean and sanitize the AeroGarden. 

After emptying out the solution into the sink, let the bowl sit in fresh running water until most of the liquid has been drained away. 

What I also like to do is to put fresh water into the AeroGarden unit and let it run for 5 minutes to help rinse and flush out any leftover solution deposits.

Once done, dump out the rinsing water and put in fresh water for the next set of plants you’re growing.  

Step 4: Wipe Down the Rest of the AeroGarden Surfaces

After soaking and sanitizing parts of the AeroGarden, now it’s time to wipe clean other areas that weren’t soaked or part of the rinsing.

Use a clean cloth dampened with the warm water and vinegar solution to wipe down the other surfaces.

Make sure you’re careful when wiping down the LED lights as they are made of glass and you don’t want them to break. 

There’s no need to use a dry cloth to wipe down the surfaces dry either. Air drying is totally fine and won’t take long.  

Step 5: Remove AeroGarden Parts from Vinegar or Bleach Bath

After leaving the parts sit for 20-30 minutes in the solution, rinse them off thoroughly with water before using them again.

You’ll want to put something at the sink drain to prevent small parts from going down the drain. The majority of parts won’t go down the drain, but it’s always good to be cautios. 

The pieces can be left to air dry on a towel or paper towel. There’s no need to wipe down them to dry. 

Step 6: Reassemble the AeroGarden

Once all the AeroGarden parts and pieces have fully dried, it’s time to reassemble the AeroGarden and start growing those next plants!

Use the instruction manual if you need to remember how to put the parts back together. If you took pictures, use those too to help. 

Step 7: Grow Your Next Plant

Now that you’ve cleaned and sanitized everything, it’s time to grow your next plant!

Start by filling the reservoir with nutrient rich water. This will keep the nutrients available to the plants. 

Then place the seed pods in the grow deck spaces and enjoy the fun of growing your new plants!

How to Clean your AeroGarden and Grow Deck (Harvest Elite)

Can AeroGarden Parts Be Put in Dishwasher?

Yes, you can use the dishwasher to clean the AeroGarden bowl and grow deck. Put both parts into the dishwasher and run a regular cycle. Let both parts air dry completely before reassembling the AeroGarden. 

Personally, I still prefer to handwash them, because it doesn’t take long to handwash. 

The dishwasher also doesn’t replace running the vinegar solution and then water through the unit either. 

How to Clean an AeroGarden Final Thoughts

Cleaning the AeroGarden was pretty easy. It’s not rocket science, but it does require patience and diligence.

Remember, clean between plantings and not while some crops are still growing. 

You can find various cleaning supplies on the AeroGarden website.

Here are other articles to help you take full advantage of the AeroGarden:

Cleaning an AeroGarden FAQs

What is the best way to clean an AeroGarden?

The best way to clean an AeroGarden is to remove all the plant remains and any dirt from inside and outside the container. Make a vinegar and warm water solution to soak AeroGarden parts to sanitize them, and clean the unit. Then rinse everything thoroughly with water and allow them to air dry before putting it all back together. 

How often do you clean AeroGarden?

You should always clean the AeroGarden before planting any new seeds or harvesting anything from it. You should regularly clean the outside of the container to keep it clean. 

How do I get rid of algae in my AeroGarden?

If you want to remove algae from your AeroGarden, use a paper towel and diluted solution of vinegar and water to wipe the algae away. To dilute the vinegar, mix 1 part vinegar to 10 parts water. To help prevent algae from growing , make sure to keep the container out of direct sunlight and cover up any of the empty seed pod holes on the grow deck. 

Do I need to clean the AeroGardens every week?

No, you don’t need to clean the AeroGarden every week. Only clean them when you’re done growing one set of plants and preparing to grow a new set of plants. 

Can you put AeroGarden parts in the dishwasher?

Yes, you can put the AeroGarden deck and bowl into the dishwasher. A regular cycle washing cycle is good. Allow the parts to air dry afterwards before reassembling the AeroGarden unit. 

How often should I change the water in my AeroGarden?

The water in your AeroGarden should be changed once a month. The best way to care for your AeroGarden is to use fresh water. Keeping the bowl filled with water at all times is best. Be sure to keep the nutrient solution and water well-balanced for healthy growth. Add liquid plant food every 2 weeks is the standard to cover most plants. 

Why is my AeroGarden molding?

Your AeroGarden could be molding, growing fungus, or bacteria because of the constant flow of water. The fungus can sometimes be beneficial too. But it’s usually best to get rid of the mold when you’re done growing one of the plants. They can be wiped away with a damp cloth or paper towel.

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Written by:

Henry Bravo
Henry Bravo, a University of California, Davis graduate with a BS in Plant Sciences, combines his expertise in horticulture with a passion for smart technology. He specializes in smart gardens, hydroponics, and robotic lawn care, aiming to enhance gardening practices for families. Henry's articles focus on integrating cutting-edge technology to make gardening more efficient and enjoyable, reflecting his commitment to merging natural greenery with innovative solutions.

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