The dishwasher has become an indispensable appliance in many households, effortlessly tackling the dirty dishes after a hearty meal. While most people are well aware that dishes, utensils, and glassware can safely find their way into the dishwasher, there are some surprising items that can also benefit from a spin in the wash cycle. On the flip side, there are unexpected items that should never make their way into this trusty kitchen companion. Check out these cleaning hacks.
Surprising Things That Can Go in the Dishwasher:
Believe it or not, many plastic toys can withstand a trip through the dishwasher. Small toys without electronic components or batteries can be placed in the utensil basket or a mesh laundry bag to keep them contained. The combo of heat + long wash cycle + detergent (free from harsh chemicals) is one of the best ways to disinfect children's toys.
2. Shower heads
If your shower head is clogged with mineral deposits, detach it and run it through the dishwasher to remove the buildup. Not only does this look much better, it will also improve water flow and extend the life of your shower head.
3. Vent Covers
Remove dust and grime from vent covers by placing them in the dishwasher. Make sure they fit comfortably without bending during the wash cycle.
4. Baseball Caps
To revive a sweaty baseball cap, skip the hand-washing and throw it in the dishwasher on the top rack. Use a gentle cycle and skip the heated dry option to preserve the cap's shape. The dishwasher is also a better option than the laundry machine to keep the cap's shape because it's not tumbling around getting flattened by clothing.
5. Pet Bowls and Toys
Your furry friends' bowls and non-electronic toys can be cleaned effectively in the dishwasher. Just like with kid toys, this is one the best ways to disinfect your pet's favorite toys.
A few things that can't go in the dishwasher:
1. Cast Iron Cookware
Despite its durability, cast iron should never be placed in the dishwasher. The harsh detergents and high water pressure can strip away the seasoning that gives cast iron its non-stick properties.
2. Wooden Utensils
Wooden spoons, cutting boards, and utensils are prone to warping and cracking when exposed to water for extended periods. Handwash these items with mild soap to preserve their integrity.
3. Non-Stick Pans
The dishwasher's abrasive detergents and high temperatures can compromise the non-stick coating on pans. To prolong the life of non-stick cookware, handwashing is recommended.
4. Fine China and Delicate Glassware
Delicate items with intricate patterns or gold/silver accents should be washed by hand to prevent damage. The dishwasher's aggressive cleaning cycle may chip or fade these delicate designs.
5. Kitchen Knives
While some knives may claim to be dishwasher-safe, the high-pressure water and detergents can still damage the blades over time. Handwash your knives to maintain their sharpness and longevity.
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