If you’re like most people, you just throw your dishes in the dishwasher wherever they may fit. That’s the luxury of having a washer in the first place right? But being lazy with your placement of dishes ultimately leads to additional wasted time and water trying to rewash what didn’t get cleaned properly. There’s a much better way to load your dishwasher than your old method of tossing everything in willy-nilly. Read on to know the proper way to load your dishwasher for the cleanest dishes:
PLATES GO ON THE BOTTOM
Plates, no matter their size, should go into the slots in the bottom section of your dishwasher. Face them toward the centre and if they lean at all, lean them inwards and downwards. Each plate deserves its own row. Double stacking plates between rows can cause them to stick together, reducing their exposure to the water stream.
CUPS GO IN THE TOP RACK
Place glasses and mugs between the tines- never on top. The tip of the prong can leave a water spot. Angle cups as much as the rack design will allow keeping water from pooling on the base of the upside-down cups. Still got puddles? Unload the bottom rack first to avoid the drip-down. Arrange wine glasses carefully. To help prevent breakage, don’t let them bump against one another or the top of the dishwasher.
STACK BOWLS ON AN INCLINE
There should be enough room between each bowl for the cleaning solution and water to reach inside. To create this space, stack your bowls on a downward incline. Leave about two to three inches of space between each bowl and adjust as necessary if you discover they aren’t getting adequately sprayed. Mixing bowls and other large bowls aside, always place bowls on the top shelf.
PLACING SPOONS, FORKS AND KNIVES
If your dishwasher has the more common baskets, you can alternate how you place the spoons and forks, some up, some down, to prevent nesting. You should always place all knives down in the baskets for safety reasons. You don’t want to have to grab the sharp end of the knife when unloading the silverware basket. Also make sure the forks and spoons don’t nest together. Place some handles up and others down so that all surfaces get washed.
KEEP PLASTICS ON TOP
The water emitted from your dishwasher is very hot. Even if plastic dishes such as reusable containers are approved for a dishwasher, it’s best to keep them on the top rack. Placing plastic items in the bottom rack could cause them to warp.
- Always check to make sure a pot or pan is dishwasher approved. For example, cast iron should never go in the dishwasher, nor should ceramic pieces
- Powders, liquids and packets can all clean well. But the detergent has to be fresh or it won’t do the job. A good rule of thumb- Buy only what you can use up within two months. And you should always store it in a cool, dry spot.
- Avoid placing all of the same type of silverware in one container. It’s best to space them out in different containers so they don’t press against each other and block water from surrounding them.
- When loading the lower rack, think about the location of the detergent dispenser, spray arms and water jets. You want the water and detergent to circulate properly during the wash cycle, so it’s important that the spray arms can circulate fully and the dispenser is not blocked by a large item.