Money And Energy Saving Tips For Washing Your Dishes
Dishwashers sometimes come in for some bad press, particularly because it is assumed they waste energy and water. However this is rarely the case - usually dishwashers use less water and less energy than washing your plates by hand. So it is quite possible to be environmentally friendly and enjoy the convenience of a dishwasher. If you want to get better and cheaper performance from your dishwasher, here are some hints.
A Dishwasher may use less water and energy than you think.
The reason that most people think more water is used by a dishwasher is that it is so big and the sink is so little. Yet very few people only wash up once a day, so you need to add up all those sinks full of hot water plus any rinsing water you might use. You can work this out for yourself given the size of your sink and your washing up technique. In contrast most modern dishwashers make good use of water and may use only 20 liters (a little over 5 gallons) of water each time it runs.
Experiment with your dishwasher to save water and energy.
What's more, you would be wise to do all you can to be careful on the quantity of water used to operate your dishwasher. For example, try to scrape off dirty plates into the trash rather than running hot water to do this duty. If you must use water before using the dishwasher, put the dishes into a sink full only halfway. In addition, you can usually skip the pre-rinse cycle. By experimenting with these ideas, you may find where you're overusing your water.
Run your dishwasher when it's full to save water and energy.
Why run a dishwasher half full? Wait until the dishwasher is full and then run it. Of course, you can only do this if you own a lot of dishes. If going out and purchasing more dishes is needed to do this idea, you may find your purchases don't exceed the cost of saving water!
A Dishwasher may use less hot water and therefore less energy.
Heating water can be an energy zapper. However, both processes require hot water. So, the use of hot water in the dishwasher costs no more than hand washing. In fact, your dishwasher may use less hot water than many people's hand washing technique. Scale build up does affect the performance and efficiency of the dishwasher, so check this frequently. Scale build up generally happens due to the hot water heating too rapidly. The reason most people use this setting is due to the misconception that hot water kills germs. Unfortunately, the temperature required to effectively do this is so much higher than a home's hot water setting for tap and the dishwasher. The job of ridding germs then is left to a detergent. So, skip this high temperature setting and save a few bucks by opening the door during the dry cycle and let your dishes air dry naturally.
Purchase a Dishwasher with the best Energy and Water Saving rating.
If you do upgrade your dishwasher, look for washers that carry the best energy saving rating. These newer models heat water in safer and more efficient manners in comparison to older units. Also, these newer dishwashers are often far more environmentally friendly and cost effective than many of your neighbor's hand washing habits.
About The Author
Copyright 2005 Verna Arnott. All rights reserved.
Verna developed F.I.X.Dishwasher Inc. to make it easy to find Dishwashers and anything to do with them. Verna publishes a periodic newsletter on dishwashers and other kitchen appliances. For further information http://www.fixdishwasher.com
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