The hardest working appliance in my entire kitchen is my dishwasher, and yet, for many years, this appliance was a complete mystery to me. After we remodeled our kitchen and purchased our KitchenAid® Dishwasher, I was determined to learn the ins-and-outs of my new appliance.
Over the past year, I’ve discovered that a number of the ideas that I once believed about my Dishwasher are actually myths. Uncovering the myths has helped me get more out of my Dishwasher, and enjoy the process of cleaning.
Myth 1: I must pre-rinse my dishes before putting them in the dishwasher.
Uncovered: Modern dishwashers, like my Dishwasher, are designed to eliminate food from dishwasher-safe dishes, pots and pans, containers, and silverware.
I don’t need to pre-rinse my dishes since my Dishwasher has a ProScrub™ Option with 40 targeted spray jets. All that’s required is scraping the food off the dishes (into the garbage or garbage disposal), and then placing the dishes in the Dishwasher. When it comes to tough-soiled dishes (like a casserole pan), it’s best to load the dishes facing down in the lower rack of the Dishwasher, and choose the pots and pans cycle.
Myth 2: It doesn’t matter how I load the dishwasher.
Uncovered: How to properly load a dishwasher was a very hot post-dinner topic in our home. A topic that was finally settled by consulting the manual that came with our Dishwasher. If you haven’t had a chance to browse your KitchenAid manual, (which is also available via the KitchenAid website), let me share a few important notes to bust this “it doesn’t matter” myth…
– Load dishes vertically with sufficient space between each dish. This will ensure that water (which comes from the three spray arms, including the specialized dynamic wash arm) can reach the dishes.
– Place pots and pans in the lower rack with the soiled-side facing down. Or, for really stuck-on messes, position the pan toward the back wall of your dishwasher so the ProScrub™ jets can wipe it clean.
– Place durable plastic items (like food storage containers) on the top shelf of the Dishwasher.
– Place silverware in the oval holes located in the Dishwasher baskets. These holes will ensure that spoons, and other silverware pieces, are reached by the water and properly cleaned. If the silverware must be loaded in a basket, without holes, stagger the orientation of the silverware.
Myth 3: I can put anything used to prepare food/drinks in the dishwasher.
Uncovered: The Dishwasher is equipped to handle just about any dish, utensil or pot. There are a few items that I was surprised to learn shouldn’t be placed in any dishwasher:
– Some steak and chef’s knives. It’s always best to consult the manufacturer’s recommendations since some knives are made with metals that may dull in the Dishwasher. I haven’t had this issue with my KitchenAid® Professional Series Cutlery though.
– Wooden cutting boards and spoons
– Dishes and glasses with metallic trims or painted decorations
– Cast iron pots and pans
KitchenAid offers a full list of items that can and can’t be placed in the Dishwasher, here.
Myth 4: My dishwasher is only for washing dishes, pots and pans, and silverware.
Uncovered: The Dishwasher is one amazing appliance, and its cleaning capability goes far beyond just a dinner plate or breakfast bowl. A few of the items that I’ve learned can be washed in the Dishwasher, beyond just basic dishes, include: fruits and veggies, kitchen sponges, cleaning brushes, reusable cloth snack and lunch bags, and kids’ toys. You can learn more about my favorite Dishwasher cleaning “hacks,” here.
Myth 5: I don’t need to clean my dishwasher.
Uncovered: The dishwasher is the hardest working large appliance in the entire kitchen. Every so often it needs a bit of cleaning TLC. To clean the filter, twist and remove the filter (located at the bottom of the Dishwasher), and carefully wash away any particles. That’s it! This is a really simple task that will make a world of difference when it comes to the optimal performance of your Dishwasher.
Pro tip: KitchenAid® Dishwashers with maintenance-free microfilters don’t require any cleaning! Check out this great model for the latest in dishwasher filtration technology.
I love my Dishwasher and my life would be completely different without it. I’m always looking for ways to get more value out of my Dishwasher. If there are any myths that you’ve uncovered, I would love to hear about them.
*The Contributor of this post has been compensated by KitchenAid for this post, but this post represents the Contributor’s own opinion.*