1. Upgrade to an Energy Star Dishwasher
If you don’t already have an Energy Star rated dishwasher, it may be time to consider an upgrade. Dishwashers with an Energy Star rating typically perform better than their counterparts, and they are more efficient. Users are often surprised because these types of dishwashers use less water and energy, which translates into lower utility bills.
2. Loading the Dishwasher the Right Way
Many people simply place their dishes in the dishwasher and press the on button. This is a bad way to load your dishwasher, and it will drastically reduce the efficiency. Start by scrapping any larger pieces of food debris in the garbage disposal or trash where they belong. Larger pieces of food reduce the cleaning effectiveness and lead to uneven performance. Always ensure that the dishwasher is full before you begin a cycle to save as much water and energy as possible. Keep spaces between items; if they are touching, the washing cycle will be less effective, and smaller items should be angled to receive the water spray. The larger items should go at the bottom or at the back and avoid overloading the silverware holder.
3. Use the Correct Temperature Settings
Hot water will clean better than cold water, and the ideal temperature for your dishwasher is between 120-120º. Set this temperature before you start the dishwasher, and you can test the temperature by running water in the sink for 10-15 seconds. If you run your dishwasher at night after you go to bed, when the heating or AC system is off, your dishwasher will consume less energy.
4. Use the Correct Cycle
Many people simply use the cycle that was set on the dishwasher when it left the factory. This is a mistake, take the time to set the cycle based on the items that you’re washing and how stained they are. You can choose a normal or a heavy cycle, and that will work for most dishwasher loads. But, there are times when you may want to switch to a lighter cycle to wash fragile or delicate pieces that could be damaged. When the washing cycle has finished, you want to use the air dry option over the heat dry option. This is a great way to save money because if you are using your dishwasher overnight, the dishes will dry naturally anyway.
5. Regular Maintenance
A dishwasher works hard to clean your dishes, and it’s important to carry out regular cleaning and maintenance to ensure maximum efficiency. Ensure that no food debris or detergent build-up has accumulated in the spray holes. Check the dishwasher filter after each and every load, and if it is not clear clean it. Clean the door compartment where you pour in the detergent to get rid of any build-up in that area. If your dishwasher is not performing as expected, don’t wait; call out a professional to fix the problem, because it will just get worse over time, leading to a higher repair bill.
If your dishwasher is struggling to deliver clean dishes, it may be time to call in a repair specialist. An experienced home appliance repair specialist can assess your dishwasher to check for underlying issues that may be compromising performance.