Why Pre-Rinsing Your Dishes May Prevent Them From Getting Clean

If your dishes sometimes come out of the dishwasher with little bits of food stuck to them, it may be because you’re pre-rinsing your dishes.

But why?

According to Consumer Reports, higher end dishwashers (those that cost more than $500) have an internal sensor that determines how dirty your dishes are.  They’re called “soil sensors.” And if these little sensors determine that your dishes aren’t too bad, it will perform a lighter cleaning cycle, using less water and energy.

According to the soil sensing patent, it works by rinsing the dishes then analyzing the water. The dirtier the water, the harder the dishwasher will work to get your dishes sparking clean.

In addition, the makers of Cascade actually recommend keeping the dishes dirty.  “Enzymes in Cascade detergent are designed to attach themselves to food particles,” the Wall Street Journal reports.  Procter & Gamble, the makers of Cascade, say “Without food, the enzymes have nothing to latch onto.”  You basically may lose all the benefits of the detergent as it can rinse off too early in the washing process.

So save some time and don’t pre-rinse, simply scrape any larger bits of food off your dishes before putting into the dishwasher.

The more you know.