How to stack your dishwasher to get the most out of every wash

Feb 19, 2024
In the pursuit of a cleaner and more efficient dishwashing experience, mastering the art of proper stacking proves to be a game-changer. Source: Getty Images.

In the hustle and bustle of daily life, there’s a domestic chore that often goes unnoticed but holds the key to a more efficient and thorough clean – stacking your dishwasher.

Beyond the routine of loading plates and utensils, there exists an art to this seemingly mundane task, one that can elevate your dishwasher’s performance and leave you with spotless results.

With that in mind, Starts at 60 spoke with Colin Jones, a Category Expert at Appliances Online, to shed some light on the nuances of effective dishwasher stacking, offering insights that can transform this everyday routine into a game-changer for a cleaner, more streamlined kitchen experience.

According to Jones, it’s not just about fitting everything into the dishwasher when it comes to time to wash the dishes, it’s about doing it in a way that ensures every item gets a thorough clean

“Properly loaded dishes allow water and detergent to reach all surfaces, ensuring a thorough clean. Items that are placed too closely together can block the spray arms and prevent proper water flow, leading to inefficient cleaning and the need for rewashing,” he explains.

But there’s more to it than cleanliness alone. Colin highlights the broader benefits, stating, “When you stack a dishwasher correctly, you can maximize the dishwasher’s capacity allowing you to wash more items in a single load. This can save time, water, energy and detergent over multiple wash cycles.”

Efficiency doesn’t stop at washing; it extends to the drying process as well. Colin notes, “Properly loaded dishes and utensils also allow for adequate air circulation within the dishwasher, promoting even drying.”

“Items that are stacked too closely together may trap excess moisture, leading to water spots and the need for additional drying time,” he adds.

Now, let’s explore the fundamental principles of efficient dishwasher stacking to make the most out of every wash. Jones recommends starting with larger items on the lower rack to ensure optimal water flow, avoiding overloading to prevent poor cleaning results, and checking items for dishwasher compatibility.

“On the top rack, stack light or smaller items. Don’t overload or double stack your dishwasher as this can lead to poor cleaning results. Make sure to utilise your dishwasher racks efficiently, to ensure that all your big pots and pans fit,” he suggests.

“Make sure to check the items before placing them in the dishwasher, to ensure they are dishwasher safe.”

When it comes to arranging cutlery and utensils, Jones advises separating them and grouping like-for-like items to ensure thorough cleaning.

“For instance, group cutlery by type (forks, knives and spoons together) to prevent them from sticking together and ensuring they get cleaned thoroughly,” he says.

“When placing knives or utensils with sharp edges in the dishwasher, make sure to position them with the sharp edge facing down towards the base. This simple step can prevent injuries.

“Some dishwashers have cutlery trays or special compartments for utensils, if this is the case it is best to place them here for efficient cleaning.”

In the pursuit of a cleaner and more efficient dishwashing experience, mastering the art of proper stacking proves to be a game-changer.

Proper stacking not only maximises the dishwasher’s capacity but also saves time, water, energy, and detergent over multiple wash cycles.

By following these simple tips you can transform this everyday chore into a more efficient and enjoyable kitchen experience.

So, let’s elevate the mundane to the extraordinary, one properly loaded dishwasher at a time.

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