‘Don’t Rinse’—Why You’re Probably Loading Your Dishwasher Incorrectly
As video content has become more prevalent in recent years, the number of videos touting home tips and hacks popping up can make your head spin. Some are truly helpful, like products that can free up space in a small kitchen. Others might cause more harm than good, such as loading your garbage disposal with ice to clean it. Many of them may have you asking, “Am I really doing this wrong, or is this person just crazy?”
Enter in one such video that immediately caused debate on the Suggest team: What is the correct way to load a dishwasher?
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Posted by beloved internet mom/grandma Babs Costello, known affectionately as Brunch With Babs on both TikTok and Instagram, a recent video on how to load a dishwasher garnered over 6.5 million views and a lot of comments.
From cozy family recipes to everyday cleaning tips, Costello sweeps social media with all types of advice. In her post on loading a dishwasher, Costello started the video with her two very important don’ts, and her first tip was quite controversial with fans.
Dishwasher Loading Don’t’s:
- “Scrape, don’t rinse,” was the advice she gave about removing food scraps from dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. “Not only will you save water, but the detergent will have something to adhere to.” This obviously had people talking.
- “Don’t put things in the dishwasher that don’t belong there, like wood objects or your good kitchen knives.” These items should be hand-washed instead, which we agree with.
From there, Costello went into her long list of do’s, some of which had viewers surprised.
Dishwasher Loading Do’s:
- Fragile items go up top, nestled gently between the prongs, not perched on top of them. Costello included small bowls in this group and added that bulky utensils should be tucked between the cups and bowls.
- For our most precious items, wine glasses, Costello offered a genius tip for how to load. “For tall wine glasses, don’t forget to drop your top shelf down before closing,” she said in the video. “To lower your top rack, just push in (on the sidebars) and press down.”
- For the lower rack, Costello recommended orienting items toward the center for a more effective clean.
- If you’re washing pots or pans, they belong in the front of the dishwasher.
- Knives should be placed sharp side down for safety, and forks and spoons could be grouped together for easy unloading later.
- To finish, ensure the spray arms are unobstructed, and you’re ready to run!
As we said, this video sparked both intrigue and a few raised eyebrows.
Some took issue with the advice on how to load silverware. Many commenters mentioned that depending on your utensil rack, grouping spoons and forks together could cause them to nestle together and not get as clean. Another pointed out that placing spoons and forks handle side down might not be the most sanitary when it comes to unloading.
Of course, the most controversial point involved not rinsing the dishes before loading. Many noted that they don’t run their dishwasher daily, so rinsing is needed to ensure proper cleaning. Others responded by saying a lack of pre-rinsing can leave behind a weird odor, regardless of what detergent they use.
According to Ashley Iredale, an expert for the independent consumer advocacy group Choice, pre-rinsing is not only unnecessary, but it can also make your dishes less clean. “If you pre-rinse everything, your dishwasher’s going to think that your plates are cleaner than they actually are, so it won’t wash as intensely and they might actually come out dirtier,” Iredale told The Guardian. This is because most modern dishwashers have built-in sensors that measure the amount of dirt detected in the initial rinse cycle. Who knew?
Everyone’s dishwashing habits and appliances are different, but perhaps you may have learned a few do’s (or don’ts) to apply in the future.
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