Wondering why your new dishwasher seems to run even longer than the old one? How can that be energy efficient? The following information should answer some of the questions related to energy consumption in today’s dishwashers:
- Why do dishwashers dry differently today? Rinse aid allows dishwashers to use less water with the same amount of cleaning and drying effectiveness by making the water sheet along dishes more efficiently. Rinse aid, along with the heat dry option are necessary for good drying performance.
- Why has wash performance changed? To meet today’s energy standards, normal cycles no longer use the excessive amount of water they used in the past. Now you choose cycles specific to actual load sizes and soil amounts (Heavy Duty, Light/China, ProScrub, Hi-Temp Scrub, etc.) to achieve good cleaning.
The sensor in your dishwasher monitors the soil level. Cycle time and/or water usage can vary as the sensor adjusts the cycle for the best wash performance. If the incoming water is less than the recommended temperature, or food soils are heavy, the cycle will automatically compensate by adding time, heat, and water as needed.
- Why are cycle times longer today? Pumps and motors are very low wattage and use a fraction of the energy of a 7-10 year old dishwasher; however, they must run longer to achieve the same wash performance. It is not abnormal for today's dishwashers to run 2-3 hours. Even though they run longer, they are not using more electricity.
- Why does hard water build up more today? If you have hard water, the reduction of water and energy will increase the hard-water deposit buildup on your new dishes, dishwasher, and dishwasher components. You can control this if you increase the rinse aid setting, use a bit more detergent, and regularly use a dishwasher cleaner to help reduce the buildup of hard-water deposits.
For more information, call Buncombe County Cooperative Extension at 255-5522.