Washing up by hand vs dishwasher for family of 5

(15 Posts)
Cuddleczar Sun 05-Jan-14 09:03:57

I am very lucky, my DH does all the washing up smile. We used to have a dishwasher but since moving house (13 years ago!!) although there is an old one here, we haven't bothered to use it. The problems he had: 1) you have to rinse the plates a lot to avoid crud buildup in the dishwasher and by the time you have done that, you might as well have washed them up by hand; 2) the amount of stuff like saucepans etc that weren't dishwasher proof so he still had to do some washing up; 3) unless plates were cleanish when they went in the DW, they would end up with nasty residue on them at the end of the cycle; 4) amount of work involved in loading and unloading the DW; 5) number of times we needed something and it was in the DW. My DH also maintains he uses very little water and doing it by hand is environmentally friendly.

So, I wondered, what do other people do to avoid the above problems?

You don't need to rinse plates, just scrape leftovers into the bin. Most pans are dishwasher safe so they go in too. I don't get residue left on plates, cups, etc.

You occasionally need to clean out the filters, run it on an empty hot wash with a dishwasher cleaner, etc but apart from that it is relatively hassle free

P.s. The dishwasher is supposed to use less water than hand washing and it dries the dishes for you too

Why bother? stay washing by hand if it works for you. But for the record:
1) scraping seems to be enough. Also cleaning the filter out regularly, using salt and dishwasher rinse aid
2) Everything i buy has to be dishwasher proof, although some pots and pans won't get clean in a dishwasher
3) See 1) above
4) Compared to washing up for 5 people i'd say loading and unloading is a lot less work (unless someone else is doing the washing up of course)
5) This hardly ever happens to me but I do run the dishwasher regularly

Dishwashers get glasses especially but also mugs and greasy stuff absolutely sparkling clean - hand washing can be less reliable (especially if done by my mum). New dishwashers seem to be much less fussy than old ones - I remember my aunt having one back in the late 60's (POSH OR WHAT!!!) but you pretty much had to wash everything before it went in or the damn thing flooded. They really aren't like that nowadays.

mousmous Sun 05-Jan-14 09:13:35

d/w cleans much more hygienically and uses much less water than handwashing.
our mashine uses 7 liters of water on the economy cycle. and that is for a full size mashine. I bet yout dh uses more than 10 liters, especially if he rinses the dishes. if not bleurgh.

the problem you describe make me think your model is not working properly. before using it clean the filter and the wings and run an empty hot cycle. when packing make sure the wings can turn freely. it should clean fine with only cruds removed.

If you were getting residue then it sounds like the filters/rotor arms needed cleaning.

Bakerof3pudsxx Sun 05-Jan-14 09:16:23

We are a family of five. I do 90% of the washing up and it is all done by hand. It's one of the chores I don't mind as much tbh. I did think about getting a dishwasher when I was oh with number 3 however there was nowhere in out kitchen it would fit nicely

42notTrendy Sun 05-Jan-14 09:17:24

The problems you describe with residue and needing to rinse makes me think your dishwasher didn't work properly. They are very efficient now and I wouldn't be without one. And the time it takes to load/unload must be minute in comparison to hand washing pots from a meal for 5!

LadyIsabellasHollyWreath Sun 05-Jan-14 09:21:29

How old is your dishwasher? Maybe it needs a service. When was the last time you cleaned the filter and filled up the salt? It's certainly not my experience of using a dishwasher with a family of 4.

In order
1) I just scrape not rinse, it's fine
2) there are always some things that need doing by hand, but our saucepans all go in
3) see above questions - also are you stacking correctly to get optimum water flow
4) I never get this - surely washed up items need putting away too so it's just as much work
5) I fill up the dishwasher during the day and run it last thing at night. You do need twice as many plates as people, but that's not expensive - twenty quid at Asdas homeward department should top you up if necessary.

On the efficiency question - most people use much more water and power to wash up manually than a good modern dishwasher. However, if your DH has a very efficient double sink system and your machine is quite old then he might outdo it.

PigletJohn Sun 05-Jan-14 09:25:56

No contest.

Imagine someone saying "I have an old washing machine and it leaves clothes dirty so I take my stuff down to the river and bang it on a big rock"

Mikkii Sun 05-Jan-14 09:26:48

When we moved into our house 7 years ago, the dishwasher in the house was useless. We went back to our old house (which was not yet on the market) and collected our old slimline one.

We are a family of 5 and I would not want to be hand washing everything, especially as DH is a chef and never tidies as he goes!

wonkylegs Sun 05-Jan-14 09:28:43

The problem is you are comparing a crap / broken dishwasher with handwashing.
Our DW just needs plates scraping (which you do for handwashing) and loading and it does the rest.
The only things that don't go in are champagne glasses & one or two very large serving dishes. Neither of which get used that often.
Mine come out brilliantly, extremely clean (unlike my in-laws handwashing attempts over Xmas - they insisted on washing up, all of which ended up going on a rinse cycle in the DW to remove marks/residue) and dry.
We have a miele DW which is worth it's weight in gold, our old Bosch was also good but have had (came with houses) - Neff & Smeg which were very mediocre and less convincing.

magimedi Sun 05-Jan-14 09:33:37

Also - most children can load/unload a dishwasher from an early age. They may not be so good at washing up to a high standard.

The Miele I left in the house we had before moving here was 21 years old, had 6 moves & was still working wonderfully.

Pannacotta Sun 05-Jan-14 09:48:37

Another benefit of having a dw is that it keeps the kitchen worktops clearer as dirty plates are loaded up rather than sitting on the side or left on the drainer once washed.
And I agree they are much better than they used to be, even an entry level Bosch will be much better than the one you describe.

delasi Sun 05-Jan-14 13:29:12

Well, is your DH happy washing up by hand and wants to continue? Because if so, then you could just pull out the old machine and dedicate the space to something more useful for your family.

I personally would appreciate having a dishwasher, because I find it's much easier, dirty dishes are out of sight, and it removes the huge chunk of time spent washing dishes on a daily basis. I would still wash pots/pans by hand though, because we cook in big pots that we usually soak after and the dishwasher is not as good at dealing with them (in past experience, haven't had access to a dishwasher in 6 years!). Most these days afaik can run fast (about 40mins?) and I don't find loading and unloading any more taxing than putting dishes in the sink, drying and then putting away. I dream of having a dishwasher grin

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