The Surprising, Space-Saving Trick That Might Be Hiding in Your Dishwasher

updated Jul 22, 2021
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

There are few games that are harder to win than Dishwasher Tetris. I know you know what I’m talking about: “This bowl goes here, this cutting board goes there, this platter might fit there!” I always try to fit as much as possible in my dishwasher so that I can empty out my sink and so that I don’t feel like I’m wasting water. Of course, I have to be careful: Load it up too much and stuff won’t come clean.

As always, TikTok has a game-changing tip (one that I would have never come up with on my own): With some dishwashers, you can pull the silverware basket out from the bottom rack of your dishwasher and hook it onto the inside of the door instead. This frees up space in the rack. What you do with that space is up to you, but I would use it for more plates.

The key here, though, is some. As in, it doesn’t work with all dishwashers. You have to have that little cubby in your door in order for the silverware basket to fit and for the door to close properly. Of course, I had to try it myself.

We just moved into a house with a brand-new dishwasher, so I was hopeful — but I was ultimately bummed to find I couldn’t close my dishwasher door. I could balance the basket on the edge of the lower rack and close the door, but I think that’s a dangerous (or at the very least, ineffective) way to run a cycle.

If you can’t close the dishwasher door on the first try, don’t give up hope — there could be a simple workaround. In one video, the creator realizes her dishwasher’s bottom rack was in backwards. Once she turned it around, the silverware basket fit between the door and the rack. It’s worth trying if you, like me, are tired of losing at Dishwasher Tetris and need even a little more extra space.

Have you tried this? Did it work for your dishwasher?