If you have been stacking up plates, forks, and spoons inside the dishwasher for long, you will soon be haunted by the nasty smell that reminds you it’s time to do the dishes. Thanks to the tiny dishwasher tablets, you no more need to wonder about how much detergent to add.
Can you put dishwasher tablets in the bottom of the dishwasher’? I looked up on the Internet for an answer and found that yes, you certainly may, but experts say it’s not the right method. The dishwashing equipment is designed to do a short pre-rinse with water and then start the long washing cycle.
If you put the tablet at the bottom, it will start dissolving earlier than it is supposed to, resulting in some wastage. When you put the tablet in the dispenser, it’s door remains closed during the pre-wash cycle. As the second long cycle starts, the dispenser door opens and water starts dissolving the tablet.
However, users often face issues with the dispenser door, not opening or the tablet not dissolving completely even after the washing cycle completes. If you are facing similar issues, there’s probably some problem with your washing machine that needs to be fixed.
Why Putting Dishwasher Tablets In Bottom Is Not A Good Idea
The problem with putting the tablet directly in the dishwasher is that the first step of cleaning usually involves rinsing. The dishwasher fills up with water, rinses for a few minutes, and then empties out all the water to fill again for the next step that involves washing.
If the tablet lies at the bottom from the beginning, it will start dissolving too soon and not do a good job at cleaning when the wash cycle starts. You may find some of your dishes dirty even after a wash but the problem lies not in your dishwasher tablet but the way you use them.
However, people do it all the time when the dishwasher dispenser stops working or the tablets are too big to fit in there. In some equipment, the pre-wash cycle is very small so you don’t lose a lot of detergents there.
When you are facing issues with the dishwasher compartment, I would recommend you to do a test first. Dump the tablet before the prewash. When the machine releases the water after the first cycle, open the lid just before the long wash, and check how much of the tablet has dissolved.
If it’s a negligible amount then you probably won’t care much. However, if the equipment you use has a longer pre-wash period and dissolves a lot of detergents then you may want to add the tablet after the pre-wash.
However, please bear in mind that the dishwasher compartment is designed to release the detergent slowly after the pre-rinse cycle. There is a reason why there is a separate compartment for tablets. If there are issues, I strongly recommend getting your dishwasher fixed.
How To Fix A Dishwasher Not Dissolving Tablet Placed In Compartment
If the dishwasher tablet remains un-dissolved even after the cycle ends, you may need to check the water temperature. If the hot water temperature in your dishwasher measures below 110F/115F, it may not be enough to dissolve certain brands of tablet.
So, check the water temperature before you start the dishwasher. I would recommend that you run the hot water in the sink for some time until the water is very hot and then start the dishwasher cycle. The main purpose is to run the machine on the hottest and longest cycle possible.
If the tablet still does not dissolve fully, check to see if the spring opening action of the dispenser door is functioning properly. If the dispenser is too small, the big size detergent tablet may jam the door and not allow it to open properly.
To fix this situation, try using the high-quality gel or liquid dishwasher detergent like this available in the market. You may also use a powdered detergent with rinse aid to help you get rid of the spots when the tablets don’t dissolve well.
Can Washing Machine Detergent Go In Dishwasher?
When people run out of dishwasher tablets or solutions, they often wonder if they can use the machine or laundry detergent, maybe just one time. What harm can it possibly make? Both are meant for washing and cleaning after all.
Well, let’s not forget that both these types of detergents are formulated uniquely for a different purpose altogether. While a dishwasher tablet or detergent has agents to wash off the stubborn food from cutlery and dishes, the laundry detergent may have fragrances, brighteners, and stain removers.
Laundry detergent may also contain water conditioners to protect clothes from damage. These toxic substances may not be completely removed from the dishes even after they are washed. If you accidentally ingest them, these agents may cause health issues.
By putting washing detergent in the dishwasher, you also risk having a lot of foam overflowing in the kitchen. The dishwasher detergent is formulated in a way to have no sudsing acting as it cleans the dishes. Hence, it’s not a good idea to use anything other than what is recommended for the appliance.
Finally, you will also likely void your warranty and impact the life expectancy of the dishwasher. The washing detergent may not clean the dishes well, and leave behind a lot of residues that may cause performance issues in the appliance.
Related article: Your Dishwasher Can Run Better – 14 Tips to boost its Performance
7 Reasons Why Dishwasher Tablets Are Better Than Gels And Powders
If you thought dishwashers may not be able to scrub off over boiled milk from the bottom of the pan, think again. Today, there are powerful detergents delivered in the form of tablets that contain bleaches, builders, enzymes, and surfactants to give you sparkling utensils.
They also contain extras such as disintegrants needed to break down the tablets and ensure that all actives dissolve fast inside the dishwasher. Here are 7 good reasons that explain why dishwasher tablets are better than gels and powders.
#1. Ease of use
The tablets bring some extra convenience and comfort to your busy routine. You no more need to worry about measuring out detergent powders or risk spilling the liquid detergent. There’s a special chamber built for the tablets so you just take one tablet and pop it inside the dispenser to get hassle-free washing.
#2. Economic use
The tablets come pre-measured so there is no wastage of detergent, which is common in case of powders, gels, and liquids. I have a pro tip for you – break the tablet into the half when you have fewer dishes to wash and you may keep the other half for next wash.
Don’t be tempted to use two tablets for stubborn stains or dried food as using extra will not make your utensils any cleaner. One tablet is usually enough and the hot water does its job on the stains and dried food particles.
#3. Various options to choose from
Unlike the heavy fragrance of laundry detergent, the dishwasher tablets leave a subtle and fruity scent behind. It leaves your dishes not only squeaky clean but also smelling fresh. You can choose from a wide range of fragrance options available.
#4. Power-packed action
The dishwasher tablets are made of several gel packs and powerballs that make it easier to remove stains quickly. You may have seen different colors in a tablet. Interestingly, each color dissolves separately at different times to give your dishes a thorough wash.
#5. Compact size
Besides the amazing abilities of the dishwasher tablet, another important feature that deserves a mention is the compact size of the tablet. They are powerful, yet small enough to easily store several tablets in a jar.
#6. Saves times
The dishwashing tablets combine several tasks such as de-greasing and pre-wash to ensure that you spend less time scrubbing and soaking. You can also buy dishwasher tablets that are meant to clean the equipment to enhance its life expectancy.
The unique formulation of dishwashing tablets makes them safe for the environment at large. They reduce the amount of soap entering into the water supply, and this eases the pressure on water treatment plants.
Can You Use Dishwasher Tablets In Any Dishwasher?
You must only use the dishwater liquid, powder, tablet, or pod that is specifically designed for the specific model. Using a different kind of detergent may cause unwanted sudsing in the dishwasher, resulting in poor performance. It may cause suds and water on your kitchen floor.
Can I use dishwasher tablets in older equipment?
If you own old equipment that does not have a separate compartment to keep the dishwashing tablets, you can keep them on the top shelf. While some people prefer keeping the tablets at the bottom, this usually results in the tablets dissolving quickly.
What to do if you accidentally put laundry detergent in the dishwasher?
You will end up with too much suds so that will mean a lot of mopping and wiping of the floor. When the cycle stops, I would recommend washing again with half a tablet of dishwasher tablet to ensure that any toxic elements are washed away.
Why are dishwasher tablets expensive?
The dishwasher tablets are more expensive than any other forms of detergents – powders or gels. When you have loads of varying capacities, you have less flexibility with the tablets. Furthermore, the tablets come in one single size and some tablets may require a longer wash cycle to dissolve completely.
Why is my dishwasher tablets stuck in the dispenser?
Before running a dishwasher, you must ensure that the dispenser compartment is clean and dry. If there are any traces of moisture, it will cause the detergent to stick to the surface. Hence, I recommend that you wipe the dispenser with a clean and dry cloth before putting the tablet.