Is your dishwasher ready to take on all those dirty holiday meal dishes? If not, here are some tips to get the most out of yours during its hardest working season!
You may find that your dishwasher isn’t working like you expected even if it is fairly new. You may even wonder why they don’t make them like they used to. The truth is that dishwashers and dishwashing detergent have changed completely and we need to adjust to how we use them. It used to be that dishwashers used 35 gallons of water and phosphate-based detergents. In 2010 phosphates were eliminated from detergents, leaving a lot of users disappointed and manufacturers in a panic. At the same time, the Department of Energy has become more stringent on the amount of water and energy a dishwasher can consume before it can be released for production.
The good news is that dishwashers, if used properly, can actually do a better job than they used to. Here is our advice on how to get the best performance from your machine:
- Use the right detergent. Manufacturers have tried every detergent available and rated Finish Quantum soft tablets the best. We have also tried these in the dishwashers in our showroom and agree that they are the top performing product.
- Make sure your rinse aid reservoir is full. Rinse aid is very important because it causes the water to sheet over the dishes instead of beading up and causing spots. It also helps them dry better. Any brand of rinse aid is fine.
- Don’t rinse your dishes before loading them. Just scrape off the bigger chunks of food and throw them in. The white powder in your Finish tablet is an enzyme that will biologically react with the food on your plates. If there is no food, the powder will become a chalky film on the dishes.
- Run the hot water in your sink before you start the dishwasher. Most dishwashers have the ability to heat the water, but they may take the whole cycle to do it. Better dishwashers such as Asko, Bosch, G.E. and Kitchen Aid have a guaranteed water temperature and won’t start counting down the cycle until that temperature is reached.
- Run the dishwasher whenever you want. We know your mom taught you not to run it until it was completely full. Back then she was right because her dishwasher used 35 gallons of water and was louder than a freight train! With our new dishwashers that use 2-3 gallons of water, even a half full dishwasher is more energy and water responsible than washing dishes by hand. Also, dishwashers are so quiet now that they can be run while you’re watching TV in the same room.
- Clean your dishwasher with vinegar. If you live in an area with hard water you will get a build-up of white film inside the dishwasher. When you see this, pour two cups of white vinegar into an empty dishwasher and run a full cycle. It will look brand new on the inside!Good luck and happy dishwashing!