I thought I’d share a quick household tip today that has to do with using your dishwasher to clean more than just your dishes.
I really don’t like to run my dishwasher unless it’s fairly full. So whenever my dishwasher load is light I walk around and grab things that might need more than a light dusting. Like my utensil trays, the globe covers on my ceiling fans (especially the ones in the kitchen), drawer organizers, large fillers for apothecary jars like my plastic lemons, and the soup tureens that I display on top of my kitchen cabinets. I have lots of dishes hanging on walls that I can grab to add to my load. I put in anything decorative that can be washed with the things that we eat off of. Also, the sponge we use for the kitchen counter, the sponge we use for the dishes, kitchen sink strainer/plug, my glass microwave tray. I used to put in my burner drip pans when I had a stove that used them.
Then once every 3 months or so I do a load of things that are easier to run through the dishwasher than to clean by hand. (I do not do dishes we eat off of or utensils we use in this load). I do put in things that are time consuming to wash by hand or things I might want to sanitize such as storage containers from the craft room, vent covers, the exhaust fan grille, light switch covers and the trays I use in the fridge.
Here are some other things I’ve recently discovered that can be cleaned in the dishwasher (your mileage may vary as to whether or not you feel comfortable using your dishwasher for these things:
- Plastic hair brushes & combs (remove all the hair first of course)
- Baseball hats & visors (do not use dishwasher detergent in this load & no heat)
- Plastic toys (use a mesh bag to keep little things together)
- Shower heads
- Dust pans & broom ends (with visible dust removed)
- Flip flops
- Refrigerator shelves if they fit
- Soap dishes, toothbrush holders, cotton ball holders etc.
- Trash can lids and small trash cans
- Disinfect toothbrushes in the dishwasher
- Rainboots with the liners removed
- Desk accessories (pencil holders, sticky note trays, etc)
- Wash potatoes for a big group! (use no detergent)
Also every couple of weeks I run a cycle with just a cup of white vinegar because detergent residue and other things can build up on the inside of your dishwasher. I know it seems strange that you have to clean your dishwasher but this is what an appliance repair person told me to do (I also have to do this with my HE washing machine which I also find ridiculous).
Now, just for fun, check out this video if you want to see how to “cook lasagna” in your dishwasher! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmLCEtEoTKQ . Apparently it’s also a good place to cook salmon! Bob Blumer’s Dishwasher Salmon Recipe
What do think? Do you use your dishwasher for more than just washing dishes?