What type of dishwasher detergent should I use?

No matter how old or new your dishwasher is, it’s important to make sure that you are using the right detergent. Not all dishwashers are the same, and there are a number of factors that need to be considered before simply adding the suds and starting the wash cycle. Here are few tips to keep in mind before making your choice.

Water type
Different areas have different types of water. In some areas, the water might be significantly harder, and this is due to increased levels of magnesium, calcium, and various other minerals. If you are not sure if your water is hard, you can purchase a kit that allows you to test the mineral levels. If the test reveals that the levels are considerably high, you can install a water softener system. It’s also good to remember that rinse aid can also help prevent water spots that often occur where hard water is present. Remember to follow the instructions on the package and never overdo it with the detergent or rinse aid. Hard water does require more detergent but, if you use too much, you will notice that your dishes come out with soap residue.

Different detergents
There are a number of brands from which to choose and there are also different types of detergents. For example, you have probably noticed that there are pods, powders, and even gel detergents designed for dishwashers. The tablets are very effective since they are already measured out, and you don’t need to do any calculating. Any pre-packaged detergent offers this kind of convenience. Liquid and gel varieties will need to be measured as do powder detergents. Cartridges are also available but they are usually on the more expensive side. They also take up extra space in your dishwasher.

Add something extra
When you use a dishwasher, it’s not just about your detergent. Just like you would use detergent and fabric softener in your washer, so too you need to consider other additives for your dishwasher. Bleach and enzymes help remove stains and aid in food removal. Rinse aid helps ensure that your dishes come out without spots or water marks. Consider your needs and use these additives accordingly.

Not all dishwasher detergent brands suit all dishwashers. Your dishwasher manufacturer might have some advice to offer. Alternatively, you can buy a few different detergents and test them to find the best one for you. Purchase small amounts of each detergent until you make your final decision. The same goes for the additives you use. There are a number of brands, and your personal preferences will determine which ones are the best for you and your appliance. Remember, like food, detergents also have an expiration date. They also need to be stored properly in order to ensure that they remain effective. Avoid storing your detergent near any sources of heat or in areas where it could come into contact with moisture. Regular cleaning, maintenance, and professional dishwasher repairs will also ensure that you get the most out of this appliance. For prompt household appliance repairs, contact our Ottawa team of technicians at (613) 454-1577.

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