Nothing will make you appreciate your dishwasher more than living without one. Last year, my daughter moved into her first place that actually had a dishwasher, after several years of living in apartments without dishwashers, and let me tell you… it was a BIG DEAL. According to Britta, having a dishwasher not only eliminated a task she hated (hand-washing the dishes,) but it also made her want to cook more, since cooking at her new place didn’t require an additional hour of scrubbing at the sink. Her enthusiasm for her dishwasher got me thinking about my dishwasher, and how much easier it makes my life!
Beyond their ability to clean our dishes, there’s a lot of cool things about these appliances that many people aren’t aware of. So I thought I’d put together my best dishwasher tips to share with you, along with some useful information I’ve discovered around the web.
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Hopefully these 10 things help you gain a new appreciation for your dishwasher, too! :-)
1. Most dishwasher cycles actually save water compared to hand-washing. The water savings are even more dramatic with newer, more efficient dishwasher models.
2. My little secret for sparkling dishes? White vinegar! In every single load of dishes I do, I place a small dish in the center of the top rack and fill it with white vinegar (1/2 to 1 cup of vinegar per load.) Nothing else I’ve tried has gotten rid of hard water spots and stains more effectively. Adding vinegar is also useful for eliminating weird smells and clearing cloudy glasses.
3. Use your dishwasher to catch messes. Over your open dishwasher door, spray cooking spray onto pans to avoid a slippery, potentially dangerous hazard on your kitchen floor, or measure out powdered ingredients without worrying about any overflow or spillage.
4. Your dishwasher can clean more than just dishes! On the top rack of your dishwasher, you can wash: silk flowers, baseball caps, small toys, flip flops, light fixture covers, vacuum attachments, hairbrushes, gardening tools, and more! Read more about what you can put in your dishwasher (besides dishes) here: Surprising Uses For Your Dishwasher.
5. Did you know you can actually cook salmon in your dishwasher? Douse a salmon filet in your favorite marinade, then wrap it up tightly and securely in tin foil. Place it on the top rack of your dishwasher, and run for a whole cycle (including drying.) The salmon will come out steamy, moist, and delicious!
6. Taking a few seconds to load your utensils into the dishwasher by type will make it easier and quicker to unload them.
7. Check out the Owner’s Manual that came with your dishwasher. A lot of them contain a diagram of how best to load your particular dishwasher. (Besides just being good information to know, it may help settle any ongoing arguments about the best method for loading the dishwasher!) ;-)
8. If the tops of your dishwasher tines are rusty or exposed, there’s an inexpensive fix. Dishwasher tine caps like these ones are dishwasher safe, and will instantly give your dishwasher a visual facelift.
9. It’s easier than it sounds to make your own dishwasher detergent! It’s quick to do and could potentially save you a lot of money over time.
10. Your dishwasher needs cleaning too! Clean it regularly to keep it working properly. (You can get all the details from my post about how to clean your dishwasher.)
After putting together this post, I feel as though I’ve barely even scratched the surface of what my dishwasher can do. Do you have a favorite thing about your dishwasher? Share it in the comments below! :-)