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February 20, 2023 | Dishwashers

What is the Best Way to Load a Dishwasher?

best way to load a dishwasher

Why use a dishwasher when you can hand wash all your dishes? Oh, how we could count the ways. The better question is why wouldn’t you use a dishwasher? Load up all the dirty dishes in the house, click a button, and voila! You are left with clean dishes without ever picking up a sponge. 

If you loathe the idea of washing dishes by hand, then you have likely made the investment in a dishwasher. To make sure you are getting the most out of it, though, it is important that you know how to properly load your dishes in the unit. Let’s take a look at the best way to do that. 

Do Not Wash First

Washing away the left-behind food and debris from your dishes seems like a logical step to take. You know, help out the dishwasher a bit, right? Surprise! It is actually less helpful than you’d think. 

Dishwasher detergent is designed to latch onto the food left behind on your dishes as part of their effort to get the cleaning started. By removing this, you could actually inhibit the detergent from working to its highest potential. 

Pay Attention to Your Detergent

We can be a society with a go big or go home mentality. When filling up the detergent dispenser on your dishwasher, it is not uncommon to fill it all the way up – and think you are doing a good deed. 

Filling it ⅓ or ½ of the way full is often plenty to get the job done. Use too much, which may leave a film on your dishes, especially glassware. 

On a side note, when it comes to choosing the suitable detergent, use one that is designed for use with dishwashers not dish soap. Otherwise, you may find yourself with an outpouring of bubbles on your kitchen floor. 

Loading in the Right Location

It matters where you place items in the dishwasher. After all, you want to ensure that everything has the best opportunity to get cleaned. Know the best location. The lower rack should be reserved for large items, such as plates, pots, large bowls, and so on. On the top rack, you can add bowls, cups, coffee mugs, small plates, etc. Any plastic containers you have should always go on the top rack, too, if possible to reduce the risk of melting. 

Silverware and other cooking utensils will likely have a designated bin in a specific spot within the dishwasher. Wherever it is designed to be, that’s where it should go. 

Properly Placed Utensils

Speaking of utensils… 

Believe it or not, there is a right and a wrong way to place your utensils in their basket. You may be tempted to toss them all in and call it a day. However, if you want clean silverware, you will want to do things right. 

Correctly place your utensils with the handle down. This will allow the machine to adequately clean all the germiest, dirtiest parts. If they were all faced down, there would be too many obstacles in the way to ensure a thorough cleaning. 

When it comes to knives, though – put the sharp end down. This is, of course, for safety reasons. And with all the other utensils facing the opposite direction, you can count on your knives getting clean. 

Keep Jets Open

The water needs to make its way around the entire dishwasher. To do that, the water needs to be able to move freely without getting blocked. 

The spray arm for your dishwasher is located at the bottom of the machine. Because large items go on the bottom, it is easy for them to block the sprayer and keep water from getting to your dishes. And, let’s face it – there are few things worse than opening your dishwasher to find things still dirty.

Fill it Up

A dishwasher can be much better for the environment than washing dishes by hand. But this is only the case when you are washing a full load of dishes. So before starting your dishwasher, wait until you fill it up before hitting that start button. 

Of course, investing in a THOR Kitchen stainless steel, pro-style dishwasher gets you SmartWash technology – and that means using just the right amount of water every time. 

Know What is Dishwasher Safe

Certain dishes just won’t fare well in the dishwasher. The unit may cause damage to delicate items, it may cause certain items to warp or crack, or it may even dull blades. So before you move forward with sticking everything in the dishwasher, you may want to consider leaving a few things out. 

Wine glasses that have thin stems or any delicate piece of cookware or stoneware should not be placed in the dishwasher as they may end up broken. Be sure to check any questionable item you have to see if it is noted for being microwave safe or not.

Knives, blenders, food processors, and other items with a blade should be left aside since the blades are known to get dull in the dishwasher. 

Wooden spoons and cutting boards also should be kept out of the dishwasher. The reason? They could warp – and even crack. This may not happen the first time you place them in the dishwasher but over time. To preserve your wooden kitchen items, wash them by hand only. 

While it may seem as though you are leaving a lot out of the dishwasher, if you take a look at all the cups, glasses, mugs, plates, bowls, pans, utensils, etc. that you use every day, you will see that a dishwasher can relieve you from a lot of handwashing. 

Clean Dishes Every Time

Taking the leap and investing in a dishwasher can benefit you and the world around you. And, with all of these tips, you will know how to properly use and make the most of your investment. Give your hands a break!