With improvements in technology, modern dishwashers have now become an actual time and labor savers. But, sometimes, they don’t always perform the way you’d hope. Nearly everyone has had the disappointing experience of opening the dishwasher to find the plates still covered with spots of food residue. A dishwasher washes your utensils both precisely and quickly. This gives you the luxury of relaxing at home without having to worry about washing up after your meals. However, there are a few steps you can take to ensure your dishwasher operates at peak performance. Here are a few tips to help you get the best performance from your machine.
Get Cleaner Utensils with Salt
If you want to achieve outstanding cleaning results, dishwashers need to use soft water. Hard water leads to the formation of a white film on glasses, crockery, and the insides of your dishwasher. Additionally, it can damage the heating element and jets. This is where dishwasher water softener salt comes in. The sodium present in the salt mixes with resin balls in your dishwasher’s workings to soak up the hardness. Ideally, the resin balls have a negative atomic charge. The dishwasher salt contains a positive atomic charge—the magnesium and calcium interchange with the sodium ions removing the hardness and softening the water.
Let Dirty Utensils Soak First
This sounds gross but is very useful. After loading your dishwasher, let your hand items soak rather than spending minutes (and plenty of water) washing them repeatedly under the running faucet. Start by soaking the dishes one at a time. You can also fill the sink a bit and let them marinate. You don’t require a full sink to soak dishes efficiently. The best approach is to lather all your utensils and dishes at once. Switch the faucet back one when you’re ready to rinse everything. Ideally, your dishes require water to be sanitary. However, soaking them all together in your dishwasher isn’t a health risk as long as you soap and rinse well at the end.
Choose a High-Quality Dishwasher
Go for a dishwasher that is rated for water and energy efficiency. In the USA, start by looking for Energy Star-rated appliances. It includes devices that use 25% less energy than the required minimum. Additionally, familiarize yourself with the yellow EnergyGuide sticker you’ll find on new dishwashers and other appliances. Also, check if your dishwasher has adjustable racks. This will help to fit a larger variety of dishes. Finally, be keen on the decibel rating. Why? Cheap dishwashers can be noisy, and it’s not convenient if you’re living in a small apartment.
Inspect for Clogs
In most cases, clogs can develop in the spray arm and the drain. Check the holes regularly in the spray arm to ensure they’re not clogged with food residue or hard water minerals. You can use a needle or a toothpick to remove any particles. Remember to check the trap and the drain too. These areas are prone to blocking, mainly caused by food scraps or other minute objects.
Additionally, gaskets and seals can dry out over time and develop cracks. This eventually causes the dishwasher to leak. Conduct a regular inspection to ensure everything is working correctly.
Reduce the Heat and Air Dry
Many modern dishwashers have heaters to heat the water that comes from your water source. This would seem repetitive, right? Try turning your water source’s thermostat down to about 115-120 degrees. This results in extra energy savings without compromising on cleanliness. Additionally, instead of letting your dishwasher use electric heat or a fan to dry the dishes, consider opening the door at the end of the washing cycle and let them air dry. You can leave the dishes to dry overnight, and they’ll be ready for you when you wake up.
Many people avoid inspecting their dishwashers until it’s too late. The ultimate success of your dishwashing experience starts with a functional dishwasher. If your dishwasher has an issue, ensure you call in a professional. An experienced professional needs to check for loose, damaged valves, door, or tub troubles that may result in drips. Some of these issues may also contribute to leaks and, even worse, significant water damages. Expert help will keep your machine operating efficiently. This also saves you from substantial replacement and repair costs in the long run.
Remember only to put dishwasher-safe items in your machine, especially if you plan to drink or eat from them. Some items, especially water bottles, can release harmful chemicals if exposed to heat. For this reason, it’s advised that you choose a dishwasher with a non-plastic interior. By incorporating the tips above in your washing ritual, you are a few steps away from taking your dishwashing experience to a new level of cleanliness.