Most people with helpers don’t feel that they need a dishwasher, but there are still benefits to having one. One reason is that many kitchen sinks in Singapore do not have hot water, or water that’s hot enough to kill bacteria. A dishwasher solves that problem. If you don’t have enough space for a full-sized one, a smaller countertop one will do the job. Having a dishwasher also means that you have a place to put dirty stuff out of sight straight away, with nothing piling up in the sink. In this climate, that’s a bonus! Here, we bust some of the myths about dishwashers and reveal why it’s a good idea to have one.
#1 My water and electricity bills will increase
Rinsing and washing your dishes by hand can actually use more water than running a dishwasher. For the same number of dishes, you might need to refill the sink multiple times compared to running just one load in the dishwasher. Also, with technology advancement, modern dishwashers are requiring less water (and energy) to run.
#2 My dishes won’t be as clean as if I wash them by hand
Dishwashers use water at a very high temperature (over 49 degrees Celsius – hard to handle if you’re washing by hand) that helps to kill harmful bacteria. This fact, combined with dishwasher detergents that are designed to remove dirt and stains, means you can expect a load of immaculately clean dishes. What’s more, many dishwaters in the market include great features for better cleaning such as powerful water sprays and enhanced heating technology for drying.
#3 I’ll need to pre-rinse my dishes
With dishwashers’ strong jets and specially formulated detergents to remove grime, you won’t need to use additional water to rinse before loading your dishes into the washer. All you need to do is scrape off excess bits of food, then let the machine do the work for you. Tip: Arrange your items properly so water and detergent can reach every nook and cranny.
#4 Dishwashers are breeding grounds for bacteria
On the contrary, the high temperature of water and the detergent used in dishwashers help prevent germs and bacteria from growing. Sponges and wash towels used when hand washing are actually more likely environments for bacteria growth if they’re not cleaned and changed regularly.
#5 I don’t have enough dishes to fill my dishwasher
You don’t need a lot of dishes in order to use your dishwasher efficiently. Many dishwashers now come with special functions to meet different needs, such as half-load functions and short cycles if your dishes aren’t heavily soiled.
Getting started: Choosing a detergent
Besides being able to bring a real sparkle to your plates and cutlery, you’ll want a cleaning product that will also protect your items (and your dishwasher). In addition to removing stubborn stains, keeping your cutlery clean and shiny (including stainless steel), and protecting glassware, Somat 10 Multi-Action All-in-1 Extra Dishwasher Tablets keep your machine in shape while neutralising odours. Rinse aid and salt functions are also included. Plus, you’ll be glad to know the tablets are also free from nasties such as phosphate.
Save it for the sink!
Here are a few items that you definitely shouldn’t put in your dishwasher…
#1 Wooden utensils
Anything like wooden spoons, bowls, cutting boards and items with wooden handles can get scratched if washed in a dishwasher. The heat can also cause the wood to lose its finish, become out of shape or eventually crack.
#2 Aluminium cookware
If these items don’t have a protective layer, they can become oxidised and corrode and fade when exposed to heat and strong detergents.
#3 Non-stick pots and pans
Detergents and heat can cause the non-stick coating to break down over time. Once it starts flaking and chipping, it releases harmful toxins into food – definitely something you’ll want to avoid!
Many of these items can manage the heat; others are prone to melting. Best to check if any plastics are dishwasher-safe before popping them in.
Dishwasher detergents can make knife blades dull and the hot water can loosen knife handles over time.
Somat 10 Multi-Action All-in-1 Extra Dishwasher Tablets are available at supermarkets and online stores. They’re priced at $20.30 for 25 tabs.