Proper Use Of The Dish Washer

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Occasionally I've heard people saying they're unsure of how to use the dish washer. Nothing wrong with that, so here's a helpful guide to doing it right. Mouse (talk) 13:43, 21 September 2016 (UTC)


  • The dish washer is unsuitable for these items:
    • Wooden cutting boards (the glue in them comes undone and they fall apart after a few cycles!)
    • Frying pans / large saucepans (they block the flow of water and prevent the wash from being effective)

For other items:

  • Scrape large dollops of ketchup, leftover food and so on from your plates / cutlery and into the bin before putting in the dish washer
  • Large plates go best at the outside edge of lower tray, slotted vertically into the little prongs of the tray with the dirty side facing the middle of the machine
  • Cutlery goes in the grey basket, however
    • Longer items (bread knives, wooden spoons, chop sticks etc) should be laid flat in the upper trays as they prevent the top spinner from rotating)
    • Shorter sharp knives should be put pointy end down in the cutlery tray so people don't cut themselves when reaching into the machine!
    • Other items should be placed such that they do not protrude through the plastic mesh and block the lower rotor (spoons & table knives should go bowl/blade end down if they have narrow handles)
  • Cups and glasses work best in the upper trays, upside-down


  • Detergent is in the form of tablet or little detergent sack things in a box or bag under the sink to the left of the disk washer
  • Put the detergent tab in the grey compartment on the inside of the dishwasher door and slide the little compartment door closed until it latches
  • With the trays inside the machine, spin the lower and upper rotors (by poking them with your hands - you may need to pull the trays out to put the rotors in a place you can reach them once the trays are pushed in). Make sure the rotors can spin freely and don't get stuck on protruding items. Re-arrange the items in the dish washer if necessary to permit free movement of the rotors
  • Close the door until it clicks shut
  • If there are no indicator lights on, press the on/off button on the left side of the machine
  • Select "Normal" wash on the dial, and then press the middle of the dial button to start. The start/stop indicator should go to a solid on light
  • Flip the magnetic sign to "empty me"
  • Although for some reason people flip out about it, it's perfectly OK to open the dish-washer when running to add another item if there is space. Just be aware they may be a puff of steam coming out into your face if you do this.


  • Be aware: if the dish washer has only just finished or is in the drying cycle, items inside will be hot
  • Take things out, put them away
  • Flip the magnetic sign to "fill me"
  • If people have left dirty items in the sink or on the side while the washer was running, load them!
  • While you're at it, give the side and take a wipe down, and tidy up the tea/coffee stuff