I was having dinner with a friend the other night and offered to load the dishwasher for her. I was a bit surprised when she said she would rather do it herself! She insisted she had a perfect system down for loading and thanked me for offering. This brought me to my next thought……. Is there a right and wrong way to load a dishwasher and could my dish strategy be missing the mark? Here’s what I found.
1. Start big and then go small – Load larger items first and then fill in with smaller pieces. This allows for greater efficiency and use of space. Always make sure that the items are dishwasher safe. If it says “Not dishwasher safe”, it isn’t.
2. Face plates inward toward the center of the washer – Make sure the larger plates are on the outside and smaller plates on the inside facing the spray arm. This arrangement ensures all items getting properly cleaned.
3. Sort your silverware – Sorting silverware by type makes unloading dishes a snap. There isn’t really a right or wrong way to insert silverware in the caddy, but you do want to make sure spoons don’t get stuck together and that the caddy isn’t overly crowed causing uneven water distribution.
4. Make sure dishes are free of food debris – Most dishwashers (if relatively new) do a bang-up job of getting dishes clean, but to avoid excessive wear and tear on your dishwashers trap, make sure dishes get properly scraped before loading.
5. Run the dishes at night – There are two reasons to do this…The first reason is that utility companies tend to charge more during peak usage hours, so washing at night is easier on your check book. The second reason is that when you get into the habit of running dishes at night, you will set up a great routine of always having clean dishes first thing in the morning.
6. Unload dishes from the bottom to the top – I don’t know how many times I’ve done this, but a bowl, measuring cup or some kind of container always collects dishwasher water. When I pull the item out, I dump the dirty water onto the clean dishes below. Emptying from the bottom up will eliminate pain from happening and keep dishes dry and clean.
Just by following these six simple rules, you will save yourself time, energy and money!