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Stop the streaks! 5 Secrets for cleaner dishes

Take your dishes from clean to sparkle status with these five simple dishwashing tips.

woman by dishwasherJust add baking soda

Taking care of the dishes right away is one of the best ways to make sure that you get them as clean as possible. If you are like most people, though, and can’t always get to them immediately after a meal, then sprinkle a little baking soda on any non-aluminum cookware, add water and let them soak. This will help to alleviate any streak causing debris.

Be a strategic planner

Strategically load the dishwasher to make sure that each item reaches its full clean potential. Consumer Reports recommends that you load large items at the sides and in the back of the dishwasher so they don’t block water, put the dirtier side of dishes toward the center of the machine and do not let dishes or utensils rest side by side.

There’s no beating heat

Make sure that the water in your dishwasher is hot. This is crucial to getting streak-free dishes every time. Cold, or even warm, water will not dissolve the dishwashing detergent, and you will not get clean, sanitized dishes without it. To guarantee that the wash cycle starts hot, try turning on the hot water in your kitchen sink and let it run until it gets as hot as possible. Then turn off the water at the sink and turn on your dishwasher.

Use your secret weapon

Dishes that don’t completely dry in the dishwasher often come out with streaks and water spots. A perfect way to avoid this (and extra towel drying) is to use a rinse aid or drying agent along with your detergent, like Finish Jet-Dry. Consider it your secret weapon to dishes that shine.

Keep your machine clean

Keep the inside of your dishwasher clean. When food particles, grease, soap scum and other debris build up inside your dishwasher, it can hinder its performance. To clean it, simply empty out the food trap, clean the seals, add a cup of vinegar to your empty dishwasher and run a cycle. It will sanitize your appliance and remove any lingering odors. Do this once a month and it will help to ensure that you are getting the cleanest dishes your dishwasher has to offer.

Watch: Learn how to make your own liquid dishsoap.

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