Dishwashers can make cleaning up after a messy meal so easy, but it’s important to use the right technique, products, and dishwasher settings for the cutlery, crockery, and pans that you’re trying to get clean. Here’s our essential guide on how to wash dishes in a dishwasher, making it quicker and easier to get your kitchenware clean and hygienic.
How to Prepare Your Dishes for the Dishwasher
When you’ve spent hours slaving away over a hot stove, all you want to do is throw the dishes into the dishwasher, sit back, and relax. Unfortunately, while this sounds good, it could mean you need to do your dishes again afterwards, removing all the real advantages of using a dishwasher in the first place.
Dishwashers are designed to pump out water, not solids. This means that they have very small outlets at the bottom of the machine to let just the water out: If the outlets were any bigger, you could accidentally lose a few spoons! Any food that goes into the dishwasher isn’t going to be disposed of – all it’s going to do is stay in the machine and block the water outlet, leaving your dishwasher practically useless. Although it may take you a minute or two, it’s always worth quickly scraping down your plates before putting them in the dishwasher – it’s far more pleasant than having to manually pull out old, soggy pieces of corn and carrots from the outlets.
What Can You Wash in a Dishwasher?
Dishwashers are very safe for nearly all kitchenware, but it’s important to remember that dishwashers don’t just use hot water: They also steam items to help them dry. Anything that is particularly sensitive to heat should be washed by hand to protect the material and the integrity of the item. It’s also worth making judicious use of the top shelf of the dishwasher, which is further away from the heating elements at the bottom – making it more suitable for delicate items. Always check the cleaning advice on new kitchenware, as manufacturers will usually state whether their products are dishwasher safe or not.