Anyone have any tips for getting our dishwasher back on track? Our
glasses are coming out really foggy and it seems to me that there are a
lot of mineral deposits in the system because when I remove the
silverware tray I see the white scale behind where that tray goes. We
have really hard water.
I read one post that recommended vinegar but then I saw another post
that warned against use of vinegar because of gas the gets created in
Thanks for any tips,
As a point to consider, vinegar is ubiquitous and used frequently for
cleaning objects, especially glass. The mild acid is used to remove deposits
such as minerals and lime scale. Phosphoric acid is used also in
commercial preparations, likewise.
From my view, the acetic acid would combine with lime to create
carbon dioxide. Not a serious poison, but like anything that displaces
oxygen, it could be a problem in dire circumstances.
I think the previous opinion is sound.
Things you can do
1) Install a water softener for whole house
2) Install a point of use water softener (Not sure if there really is such a
3) Use jet-dry
4) Use a brand of detergent specified for hard water
if it were me, I would do #1,3 and 4.
Actually I did at my old house. It made a huge difference in, not only
dishwasher but clothes washer. Made keeping showers, tubs sinks, etc. easier
to clean. Also sprinkler didn't leave white spots on black paint of car.
If you just install a softener you may not even need jet-dry or special
I installed a cheap one from Sears. Did it myself in no time at all. Cost
about $350 IIRC. Sears will also do a water test for you for free. Just ask
them for a free test kit. The results will tell you how to set the softener.
You can also go high end, rent systems and even have salt maintained on a
contract. All that can get pricey.
I learned a long time ago that nothing cleans like Cascade. Pretty much the
most expensive one out there but it always does the job for me. If your
not using Cascade try some.
I quit using jet dry a long time ago and use clear vinegar in the container
now. I am not all that picky about the glasses.
Two words, my friend:
tried vinegar, clr, jet dry, etc to no avail...this stuff kicks ass. Couple
Tbsps sprinkled in the machine before running and mah glasses look brand
spankin new. Also removed the buildup in the machine.
(geez, I sound like a spamming whore, but really, it works)
I second your Glass Magic spam ;-). While No's suggestion of a water
softener is the optimal solution, it's not always practical or
affordable. Glass Magic does, indeed, work. It may also help to try
different rinse agents and especially detergents to find one that
spots/deposits less with your water. At least that's what worked for
us when we had very hard water.
Assuming that the washer worked ok before. Try using less soap. Deposits
are due to calcium chloride in your water reacting with the detergent. It's
worse at higher temperatures too. Kind of counter intuitive. Try just a
load of glasses with minimal detergent. You can restore your glassware by
putting it pot of water with a cup or two of vinegar. Slowly heat on the
stove to boiling and simmer for 1/4 hour or so. Our previous washer
gradually caused build up of deposits on glasses. It died and we got a new
Maytag which has never caused spotting. I am not sure what the difference
is, maybe more complete draining between cycles.
We had this problem once. Clear glassware was coming out fogged. In our
case, it wasn't a deposit of anything on the surface of the glass, the glass
was actually fogged permanently. Sometimes we'd was a load of dishes and
the glasses would come out sparkling clear, other times they'd be fogged.
After awhile we figured out why. We use powdered dishwashing detergent. If
we ever stopped the dishwasher during a wash cycle (phone call and didn't
want the noise, etc.) and forgot to turn it back on right away, when we did
complete the cycle the clear glass would probably be fogged. I believe that
the powdered dishwasher detergents aren't detergents in the common sense.
They don't create suds (or very little) and they are very alkaline. When
you stop the dishwasher during a wash cycle, you are leaving a film of this
very alkaline, hot, wet solution on all of your dishes. Alkaline solutions
can dissolve glass, especially the kind of glass that common drinking
glasses are made of. Pyrex seems to be affected much less.
There may be dishwasher detergents that aren't alkaline, but I'm guessing
not. We don't stop the dishwasher any more without immediately restarting
it and we get no more fogged glass. Keep in mind that there will be a slow
attack of glass items even when you don't interrupt a wash cycle, so we
never put expensive glassware through the dishwasher.
Keep in mind that a dishwasher that isn't letting enough water in to perform
a complete rinse of the detergent can cause this problem also, especially if
you're using the dry cycle which puts a lot of heat on the alkaline solution
left on the glass. And, of course, you're drinking some of the deposits
left on the glass.
Try the vinegar trick. If it won't come off, I'll bet the above is your
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