how to use a dishwasher machine
Kitchen Cleaning

How to Use a Dishwasher Machine Perfectly: Dishwasher FAQs Answered

Want to find out how to achieve perfect sparkling dishes every time? Read on for our failsafe tips on how to use a dishwasher properly.

There’s nothing more satisfying than a kitchen filled with sparkling clean dishes. Here we answer your frequently asked questions on how to use a dishwasher machine, covering everything from how to wash your dishes in the dishwasher so that you can achieve that perfect clean every time, to what to use for dishwasher soap. We’ll even look at where to put soap in the dishwasher!

How Should I Prepare Dishes for the Dishwasher?

The cleaner you keep the dishwasher and its filter, the more spotless your dishes will be. Scrape plates thoroughly before they go into the dishwasher.

If you do not plan to start the dishwasher cycle immediately, rinse or wipe the dishes beforehand, so that the food doesn’t become crusted or smelly. If you are washing pots or pans in the dishwasher, soak them in the sink first to loosen any hardened or burnt-on food.

What Can You Wash in a Dishwasher?

It’s important to know what to put in a dishwasher and what to wash by hand as high water temperatures can cause damage to some materials.

When learning how to wash dishes in dishwasher, the first thing you need to check is which of your items are dishwasher-safe. Most kitchen items will have a little symbol printed on them to tell you if they can go in the dishwasher but a few things you should always avoid are:

  • Wooden utensils, which can warp or develop cracks that later harbour bacteria
  • Precious items like crystal glass or silver cutlery as they can become tarnished

Instead of washing these items in the dishwasher, keep them safe and sparkling clean by hand washing them in the sink with a liquid detergent soap that contains natural ingredients – like Lux Sunlight.

dishwasher faqs

How Should I Add the Dishwasher Soap?

Now that we’ve answered ‘what can you wash in a dishwasher’, it’s time to consider ‘how to use dishwasher soap and detergent’. The first thing you need to know is where to put soap in the dishwasher. This may vary between models, but usually the detergent dispenser is located on the inner side of the dishwasher door.

Simply place a detergent tablet or a dose of powder into the dispenser, and close the lid firmly to ensure that the soap is not released too early. If you are not sure what to use for dishwasher soap then simply make sure you use a detergent designed for that purpose. Hand-washing dish detergent can cause your dishwasher to overload with soapsuds and should be avoided!

By following these tips, keeping your dishwasher in good working order should be easy. Enjoy spotless dishes and look after this important household appliance by following out tips.

Top Tip


Don’t overload your dishwasher! It’s tempting to squeeze in one last cup or bowl, but the dishes won’t clean properly if the dishwasher is too full. Read our Washing Up Tips for more advice and guidance on using your dishwasher efficiently.

Key Steps:

Follow these steps every two months to keep your dishwasher (and your dishes!) fresh and clean:

  1. Put a cup of white vinegar in the bottom of your dishwasher and run it on an empty cycle to cleanse the machine.
  2. Clean the dishwasher filter by removing it, soaking it in hot soapy water for an hour, and replacing.
  3. Wipe the dishwasher seals to remove any build-up of residue.