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The Dishwasher Debate: To Rinse or Not to Rinse?

Updated: May 20, 2023

Dishwashers are primarily designed for sanitization and disinfection of dishes, rather than scrubbing. The high temperature water and detergent used in dishwashers work together to kill bacteria and other harmful microorganisms that can cause illness.



clean dishes inside of open dishwasher
Rinsed off dishes inside of a dishwasher


However, while dishwashers are not designed to scrub dishes, they do have powerful jets of water that can help remove food particles and residue from dishes. In fact, modern dishwashers often have advanced features like multi-level washing and targeted spray jets that can help ensure dishes are thoroughly cleaned.


That being said, it's still important to make sure dishes are properly cleaned before placing them in the dishwasher to ensure effective sanitization. Large food scraps should be scraped off dishes before they go into the dishwasher to prevent clogging of the dishwasher's drain pumps. And for heavily soiled dishes, a quick rinse under the faucet or a pre-wash by hand may be necessary to ensure proper cleaning and sanitization in the dishwasher.


Overall, while dishwashers are primarily designed for sanitization, they do have powerful jets of water that can help remove food particles and residue from dishes. However, it's important to make sure dishes are properly cleaned before being placed in the dishwasher to ensure effective sanitization and avoid clogging of the dishwasher's drain pumps.


Rinsing dishes before placing them in the dishwasher can also help prevent the buildup of food residue and odors in the dishwasher. This can help keep your dishwasher running smoothly and ensure that your dishes come out clean and fresh.


Ultimately, the amount of pre-cleaning required before placing dishes in the dishwasher will depend on the level of soiling and personal preference. But T&C Appliance/HVAC Repair recommends in general, rinsing off large food scraps and debris before placing dishes in the dishwasher is a good practice to help ensure effective cleaning and sanitization.

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