How to Load a Dishwasher Correctly
By learning how to load a dishwasher properly, dishes and silverware will come out cleaner and keep their original luster longer. Manufacturers include recommendations for loading their dishwashers based on configuration of the appliance.
Is Pre-rinsing Necessary?
It's not necessary to prewash dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Detergent is designed to cling to the dirt on dishes. On clean plates and glasses the detergent is likely to cling to the surface of the glassware and could cause etching or cloudiness. It is a good idea to rinse off the bigger chunks of food before placing items in the dishwasher.
How to Load Silverware
Silverware can be loaded handle up or down. For knives the blades should be loaded down in the dishwasher, for safety. Forks and spoons can be loaded either way and should be placed to minimize 'nesting'. Nesting occurs when a group of forks or spoons are loaded together and rest, or 'nest' together. Food stuff is not easily removed in that condition. Alternate up and down and combine the types when loading.
Loading the Lower and Upper Racks
The top racks of most dishwashers have prongs for holding glassware. Placing the cups and glasses at a slant, on the prongs, will keep water from accumulating on the bottoms. Delicate items and most plastic should go on the upper rack of the dishwasher as well.
If the heating element of the dishwasher is not exposed plastic containers may be placed on the lower rack. Check the dishwasher and also confirm that plastic is dishwasher safe.
The lower racks is designed for plates as well as pots and pans . Plates should face the middle of the dishwasher, where the water flow is greatest. Place plates on either side of dishwasher, facing in. Pots, pans, and baking sheets should be placed in an upright position to maximize exposure to water. The same goes for bowls.