The Most Brilliant Dishwasher Tips We Learned in 2022

published Dec 15, 2022
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Credit: Diana Liang

As anyone without one knows, the dishwasher is one of the hardest-working appliances in your kitchen. In honor of this kitchen life-saver, we’ve rounded up some of the smartest tips we learned this year. Keep reading to learn all the best ways to make the most of this workhorse appliance.

Make silverware gleam with a ball of aluminum foil.

This may be the easiest dishwasher tip there is: Crumple up a ball of aluminum foil and toss it in your silverware caddy before you run the dishwasher. The aluminum will react with the detergent to make your utensils shinier than ever. 

Keep your dishwasher in tip-top shape with a few smart habits.

The key to avoiding dishwasher meltdowns? Regular maintenance: Turn on the hot water tap at the sink before running your dishwasher; clear your dishwasher filter after every single use; wipe down the seals with a damp towel; don’t forget to clean the spray arm; and sanitize with vinegar once a week. 

Remember these “never-dos.”

In addition to checking certain dishwasher maintenance tasks off your list, keeping in mind a few don’ts will help you use your dishwasher to its fullest potential. Don’t run your unit if you hear any rattling. Don’t block the sprayer arm. Don’t pre-wash your dishes. Don’t load glasses over tines. Don’t put plastic on the bottom rack.

Clean your dishwasher on the regular.

If your dishes are dirty or cloudy, if your dishwasher smells funny, or if your dishwasher isn’t draining properly, your unit needs to be tended to. Remember to clean your dishwasher once a month, check and clean the filter after use, and sanitize at least once a week. 

Use dishwasher detergent properly.

Make sure you’re using the right type of detergent. Liquid detergent is best for newer units, whose water doesn’t get as hot and therefore doesn’t dissolve powder or pods as well as older units. And don’t ever use too much detergent because this can cause over-sudsing, damage your unit, or just be less effective at getting your dishes clean.

Occasionally check to see if your spray arms are working.

Did you know you may have up to three spray arms? If your dishes aren’t getting clean after every cycle, it could be a problem with your spray arms. Check to see if they’re working, and check to see if they need to cleaned.

Load utensils in the dishwasher the right way.

You knew this was coming, right? The only question is whether it’s your way or your partner’s way that’s right. Well, here’s what the pros have to say: Face forks and spoons up and face knives down. You should also avoid putting the same items next to each other and avoid overcrowding in general. 

Read more: The Right Way to Load Utensils in the Dishwasher, According to Appliance Repair Pros