Settling an age-old question: How to correctly stack a dishwasher

Time and time again, it’s the things that are closest to us that we take for granted.

Well, with the coronavirus now a very real risk in Australia, and all of us taking steps to stay safe, healthy and responsible during this time, you may have found yourself getting to grips with a space very close to you indeed: your kitchen.

That’s right. Your kitchen. You love your kitchen, but you might not have given it much thought over the years, what with the hustle and bustle of daily life.

But now, with the entire family home and enjoying more meals together, the dishwasher stacking is getting a little too random and out-of-control for many households bringing an age-old question has come back with a vengeance: What is the right way to stack the dishwasher?

This is appropriate for the times we are living in. Staying clean and sanitary is critical if we are to send the virus packing but it’s also for the sanity of settling any discussion on the topic here and now.

But, we’re rambling, and you want an answer to your question. So let’s get to it! How do you stack a dishwasher the right way?

  • Make sure your dirty dishes are facing the centre of the dishwasher. This really does make a difference, trust us!
  • Angle your dishes toward the washer jets. The washer jets are where all that washing goodness comes from after all.
  • Give each item its own space. Don’t overcrowd the dishwasher; there’s just no room for everything to get clean if you do!
  • If you’ve got a few particularly tall items, make sure they are properly secured. You don’t want anything toppling over when the water starts flowing.
  • Remember that not everything is dishwasher-safe. You don’t want to ruin your finest china for the sake of saving yourself a few minutes of effort! If in doubt, hand-wash.
  • Make sure that cups and glasses are in the upper rack. This is generally the space that has been designed for them, although small bowls will fit up here as well.
  • Dishwasher-safe plastic items should also generally go on the top rack.  This keeps them away from the heating element in most dishwashers which is usually on the bottom.
  • Any larger items should go on the bottom rack. This also applies to any smaller items that may slip through the top rack.
  • If you have flexible cleaning elements, make sure to use them. Your dishwasher may have separate cleaning heads that fit inside glasses and other delicate items.
  • Place knives with their handles facing upward. This way, you don’t risk cutting your fingers when loading and unloading.
  • One last tip, not really about stacking, but still relevant! If you rely on solar power, remember to run the dishwasher at the best time for solar savings.  This will depend on your solar plan and whether it’s more cost effective to use power during the day or receive a feed-in credit against power used at night. Let your family know the perfect time to fire up the dishwasher.

So, there is a right way to run your dishwasher after all. Stay safe, and keep those dishes nice and sanitary!