Dishwasher salt and hard water

Hello,
Not sure if this is the correct group, or if there is any better but here goes.
I have just got a dishwasher (yes, in 2007). I also happen to live in a hardwater area. The manual states that with the hardness, I need to be using seperate salt, rather than the 3-1, 4-1, 5-1, etc things which have the salt included (level is 26.25 and the limit is 26).
So, I have managed to find salt and rinse aid, but can't actually find tablets without salt.
So, do I:
1) Use the tablets and ignore the manufacturers warning 2) Use the tablets and also the seperate salt (there is a setting on the dishwasher to tell if it you have the tablets or not, so effectively, two lots of salt). 3) Just keep looking and hope I find something before the dishes go mouldy!
Cheers
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We use the powder. Don't think that contains salt.
John
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Thanks.
Couldn't find any powder, but maybe that is just my local supermarket. What is the brand if you don't mind me asking?
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Some smaller places don't have it, but most do.

Own brand usually.
Note that the 'salt' in the tablets isn't salt, it's 'salt action' - presumably the same sort of thing as Calgon. AIUI The salt is used in regenerating the water softer in the machine.
I can't see that using both would cause a problem
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Chris French


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We shop at Tesco and they sell powder in a large yellow container. No brand name so I assume it's their own.
John
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wrote:

Yes, that works fine but we found availability (at the same store) was patchy. We went for this instead:
www.cpc.co.uk item SA01340
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Get powder. It's cheaper, doesn't contain salt. I buy mine in 5kg tubs from CPC.
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Difficult to answer the question directly as our machine doesn't have such a warning, however if it's any use/interest we're in a 'medium hard' water area and use Lidl's 'Adritt Perfect 5' tablets and don't use seperate rinse aid and salt. 2.99 for 40 which works out at 7.5p per wash and they work absolutely brilliantly. They are often on offer (1.99?).
We've used all sorts of alternatives previously and so have a good perspective on how effective they are.
Mathew
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I always thought we were in a hard water area (Folkestone - water from the chalk around Dover) and was surpised to find that for our level of hardness Miele advised us to set ours to something like 2 out of 8 on the machine. I dread to think what kettles must look like if you live somewhere that required the "8" setting.
Anyway, we use salt and rinse aid and then pretty much whatever the cheapest tablets we can find. Lidl/Aldi are pretty good for dirt cheap tabs - I noticed Tesco have just relaunched their "twin action" tablets as well. I tend to buy when on offer - 5p or less a tablet and I pick up a few boxes. We have had the expensive ones before and can't say I've noticed a difference tbh.

As I say, lidl or Aldi do them. Tescos do as well again now. We tend to not bother with the powder as the tablets are more convenient but the powder tends to work out even cheaper.

No. Put salt in it. It's dirt cheap anyway.

It's not actually salt in the tablets - the salt is used to recharge the softener in the machine.
Darren
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The claim is salt action.. its a big con IMO as it *can't* do the same as the salt. The salt in a dishwasher is essential to regenerate the water softener resin. Without it it will stop working (maybe permanently). The water the tablet is in doesn't go anywhere near the water softener resin so how can the tablet perform "salt action"?
Use salt as the manufacturer recommends and any old tablet.. the cheaper the better IMO. I use asda smart price tablets.
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