The Case for Rinsing

This glass came out of the dishwasher this morning. The substance is milk from a small puddle at the bottom which apparently ran down when the glass was loaded into the top rack, dried, then clung tenaciously through the wash cycle.
This glass came out of the dishwasher this morning. The substance is milk from a small puddle at the bottom which apparently ran down when the glass was loaded into the top rack, dried, then clung tenaciously through the wash cycle.

I knew a guy who was making some kind of “stick it to the man” point by not rinsing his dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. The result was serving food to us on dirty dishes and him looking like an idiot. He never caught on why we stopped having dinner with them. This guy was kind of a hippie from the start, so both his ideas about capitalism and about cleanliness were different from mine.

I often wonder if he was unaware that he was serving food to us on dirty dishes, or just didn’t care. He might have had some quip about a little dirt being good for you, but with Abby’s immune diseases, a little dirt could kill her.

In May, Wil C. Fry talked about the economy of using dishwashers, including not pre-washing the dishes. At the end in the comments section, he added, “many modern dishwashers don’t require (or even recommend) rinsing first.” Since that time I have made an effort to reduce my pre-washing to see what would happen. The result? Dirty dishes. We have a powerful, new, modern dishwasher, and some items, particularly with dried milk or starchy material like pie, simply did not get clean.

So my conclusion: know what to rinse and how much to rinse it, and if you serve dinner to guests on dirty dishes, you need to be put in the dishwasher yourself.

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1 Comment

  1. “know what to rinse and how much to rinse it”

    Well said. Remember the unfamous quote from Wil C. Fry: “The answer is almost always somewhere in the middle.” :-)

    Or is it disfamous? Imfamous?

    I certainly haven’t seen anything like what you’ve pictured above, with our low-end, builder-provided dishwasher, but yes, each user should know their own appliances and change their behavior accordingly. :-)

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