Chances are, you’ll run your dishwasher several times on Thanksgiving Day: after breakfast; after you clean up your prep mess; and after dinner.
Each time, stuff it as full as your turkey. If you run your dishwasher when it’s loaded to capacity instead of washing a half-load at a time, you’ll use way less water and electricity.
Here are five other energy-saving dishwasher tips:
- Stop rinsing. You’ve been doing it for years, but newer dishwashers do such a good job that you’re simply wasting water and time if you’re still washing the dishes before you load them. A surprise: Loading unrinsed dishes could save you up to 55,000 gallons of water over the life of your dishwasher.
- Air dry. Selecting the “heated dry” option is unnecessary. If your dishwasher doesn’t have an “air dry” option, prop open the door once the cycle completes and let the load dry naturally.
- Afraid of spots during an air dry? Use a rinse aid. It will speed drying time and prevent spots on glasses.
- Run the dishwasher after dark. Just about everyone washes dishes right after dinner, so the demand on your electric cooperative is greatest then. Also, after a long day of cooking and a house full of company, the last thing your kitchen needs is the heat that your dishwasher produces while it’s running.
- Finally, get your dishwasher away from other appliances like the oven and refrigerator. Because all of those appliances emit heat, they force each other to work harder—and wear out faster—when they’re too close together.