Adventures in Dishwashing Detergent… (it’s not you, it’s me)


I can be a little headstrong.

I see those dishwashing detergent commercials and SMH when the family loads their pans and icky casserole dishes into the machine and pulls them out sparkling.

Yeah, sure.

I’d buy new glasses and give them a first wash and… already want new glasses. Clouds were just always part of our beverage experience. I thought of handwashing my glasses (for less than a second) and decided that that was just how it was, some type of oxidation/surface energy mystery that couldn’t be solved by any squirt of Cascade, Finish, or my beloved store brand.I looked forward to a new dishwasher a year ago only to discover that not only did the clouds continue, but the shiny new dishwasher looked horrible on the inside as well. It just couldn’t wash or rinse anything clean.

I took pictures, scrubbed the dishwasher and loaded it up for one more try before planning to contact the manufacturer.  After the cycle completed, I was again chagrinned to see how terrible the inside door looked and turned to the product website to get the address for my “strongly worded letter.”

While clicking through the pages on my way to Customer Service, I came across several endorsements for a certain brand of detergents. I recalled that the instructions likewise recommended certain products, which I had quickly dismissed as a marketing ploy (note the “headstrong” comment above).  C’mon, the supermarket is filled with more economical options.

With hundreds invested in the new dishwasher, I decided to succumb to the marketing ploy…just once. I bought the all-in-one tablets, and the rinse agent, and the dishwasher cleaner…all the recommended products from the brand that I was sure was profitably connected in some way to the manufacturer.

I loaded ‘er up, turned on a wash cycle, and, ahem… everything came out clear, clean, and some things actually sparkled…including the dishwasher door.

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All those months…okay, years even, of having problems with the dishwasher may just have been actually the result of problems with the dishwasher LOADER.

Ironically, the detergent products I bought also have lasted a mighty long time (and, no, they’re not paying me, but I’ll share the brand: FINISH).  BUT…read your model’s instructions to see what’s recommended for you.

So finally…my dishes are clean, they sometimes sparkle, and I’ve even cleaned a casserole dish or two.

Sorry, was all my fault.