Dishwasher vs. Hand Washing Dishes: Which Is Better?

In a recent poll, 67 percent of the respondents preferred using a dishwasher instead of hand washing dishes.

Dishwasher vs Hand Washing Dishes, Which is Better?iStock

Hand washing dishes is by no stretch of the imagination a fun chore, especially if you have a large family. Quite frankly, if you have the funds and space it might be best to invest in a washing machine. In fact considering that the new Energy Star certified washing machines are so efficient by using one you could save more than $40 yearly on your utility bills. Not bad.

Plus instead of standing wasting valuable time soaping, rinsing, and drying each dish individually while hand washing dishes, there are far more interesting things that you could be doing with your time. Yes, simply by having a dishwasher in the home, you can save yourself over 230 hours per year; that is nearly 10 days of your life!

Moreover, since kitchens can be a source of bacteria and germs it is strongly suggested that you use heat on your utensils, plates, and pots and pans to ensure that there isn’t a transfer of bacteria. The easiest way to achieve temperatures high enough to kill bacteria is to use a dishwasher. GE Appliances recommends that the temperature used in dishwashers be a minimum of 120 degrees. Still not convinced? The University of Rochester Medical Center recently ranked ways to dry our dishes in order to sanitize them best and they found that sterilizing them in a dishwasher to be most effective and drying in a dishwasher to be the second best way.

If hand washing dishes is your only option or you’re washing one of these items you should never put in the dishwasher, use these tricks from the National Food Service Management Institute for the cleanest dishes possible:

  1. Scrape and remove all food from the surface of your plates, bowls and utensils.
  2. Use gloves and wash dishes or pots in hot and soapy water. Avoid using sponges and use clean dishcloths daily.
  3. Rinse the dishes well in clean hot water.
  4. Then soak completely covered in 170 °F water for at least 30 seconds. Check the water temperature with a thermometer.
  5. Remove dishes from the hot water and allow to completely air dry.

MORE: 8 Ways You Might Be Loading the Dishwasher Wrong

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