What dishwasher detergent to use in new Miele

bestefarMarch 19, 2013

We just had a new Miele Futura Dimension dishwasher installed today. The Miele tech said to use powder or the Miele"pellets" which we received with the dishwasher. He said use 1/2 pellet per wash. He also said we could finish our Cascade gel, but after that, we should use powder. As little as possible. Just wondering what ACTUAL users do?

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Miele tabs or "pellets"

Usually 1/2 but use a whole one if heavy extra soiled pots or heavy soiled full load.

Miele tabs are made by Somat. They are very similar or exactly the same. I use Miele Rinse Aid and I use Miele Conditioning Agent about every six months.

You can find Miele products at Miele appliance retailers, Miele vacuum dealers, and on the net. Just Google.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 4:45AM
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I use a small amount of Cascade and no rinse aid in our Miele Diamond. We have soft water. My dishes come out fine. I have occasionally wondered whether it is really necessary to use the Miele stuff, so this thread is interesting to me. I know that there have been previous discussions around this.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 7:03AM
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I have a Miele Optima which is almost four years old - G 2470 model. The control panel has the option to use gel or 2 in 1 tabs. I use Cascade Action Pacs. Everything always comes out spotless. I only scrape and don't pre-rinse the dishes. I don't use rinse aid. I love the pot and pan cycle on this DW. It really works.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 7:55AM
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I have soft water same as nycdevil.
I use seventh generation gel(works fine) but plan picking up the miele tabs to try them. I also plan on trying a rinse aid. The tech told me to use less gel (2 tsp max as opposed to filling it up).

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 8:57AM
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I use Method Smarty tabs in my Miele DW. I think rinse-aid is essential, so I also use the inexpensive Jet Dry. My water is just slightly hard - the Miele technician said it's not quite hard enough to need to use the Miele built-in softener, but it is a bit hard.

I use the Method Smarty tabs unscented version. I don't want any scents in my DW detergent, and I really like that Method Smarty tabs do not have bleach--I do not want the smell of bleach that is found in other DW tabs. They also can be easily broken in half, and I find that a half-tab works great for a load of dishes. There have been posts that if you use too much detergent, you will have etching or a white residue on dishes and glasses. I buy Method Smarty tabs at Target or Whole Foods, but they can be bought cheaper on Amazon.

Here is a link that might be useful: Method Smarty Tabs

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 9:56AM
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I want to add to my previous post - that Wilson853 had an excellent point, so I will second it - SCRAPE dishes, don't RINSE. If you rinse also, you will get etching on your dishes and glasses, since the detergent enzymes will have nothing to work on but the finish on your dishes. Plus, what is the point of having a DW if you are going to rinse; it's a waste of water, and a waste of the cost of an expensive DW.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 10:00AM
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I am not an expert so feel free to disregard anything I say (and I know many of you will), but I very much doubt that enzymes are responsible for etching on rinsed plates. Anyone with a basic knowledge of biology knows that enzymes are very specific in the substrates they interact with. Enzymes do not just eat up anything in their path. Remember the old enzyme lock and key model from high school? I seriously doubt the same enzymes that work on organic material in food are also capable of ruining porcelain or ceramic.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 10:27AM
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Realism, I too don't know for a fact whether it's the enzymes. What I do know is that if you rinse your dishes before putting them in the DW, rather than just scrape, you will over time have etching and the shine will be removed from your dishes. I am just trying to give a heads up to the OP.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 12:19PM
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I've owned a Miele Diamante Plus for almost 3 years now, and have tried a few different brands. You can see the results with some pictures in the link below.

The older (original) Miele tabs did a great job, and I only used 1/2 tab per wash. Then Miele changed the formulation and I noticed I was getting a lot of suds, even with 1/2 tab (see pics in link). It actually made so much suds, that it activated the overflow protection in the bottom of the unit, and a Miele tech had to reset it. I told him what happened, and he agreed that the older Miele tab were better, and also didn't made suds like the new phosphate-free ones.

After that, I tried the Finish Quantum (with the red ball). They cleaned well and produced no suds, but the bleach in them started to discolor some plastic items.

Then I went to the Method Smarty tabs (as a lot of people in here recommended them). All I use is 1/2 of a Method tab, and get clean results, no suds, and no bleaching discoloration. I've been using them for about 2 years now. Amazon sell a 6 bag case (20 tabs per bag) for $27. That's 120 full tabs, but since I cut them all in-half with scissors, that gives me 240 half-tabs, or about 8 months worth. For the price, you can't beat it. They have a new one called "Method Smarty Plus", but the reviews aren't as good, so I might stay clear of them and get the standard Method Smarty.

I do use the Miele brand salt for the internal water softener, and the Miele Rinse Aid. The thing I like about the Miele Rinse Aid is that is doesn't leave a chemical smell like some other brands. I went up to the Miele Store in Boca FL last week, since I needed rinse aid and salt (the red light was on). While I was there, the lady gave me a couple of the Miele tabs, since I told her what happened with the suds, but since that was 2 years ago, I wasn't sure if the formula had changed since then. That night I tried a full tab, and got the same suds, and even the following night when I only used half a tab. So they are still using the same formulation from 2 years ago that produces too many suds. Since that Miele store had several working dishwashers there, I've seen them in action, fully loaded and using Miele tab, and they had the same amount of suds in them and I get at home.

Here is a link that might be useful: http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/appl/msg0916400921569.html

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 1:14PM
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There have been many, many threads on dw detergent for Miele -- a search will turn them up. This conversation has been going on for years among those of us who have had these dws for a long time. Most of us have tried a variety of products. Results seem to vary tremendously with local water and, to a lesser extent depending on the way the dw is set up in that regard.

I have a 9 y.o. Incognito/Optima/whatever it is called now (they keep changing the names). Began with Cascade powder -- and had etching -- switched to Somat tabs (too expensive) -- switched old-formulation Miele tabs using 1/2 (less etching) -- switched to Method Smarty Tabs grapefruit/rose (best fragrance) use whole to half depending on load and currently alternate Method tabs with Finish Quantum tabs. We're on a septic so I don't want to use a tab with bleach (Finish has bleach) all the time. Mostly I use the Methods which do a great job.

These machines are designed to be used with rinse aid for optimal performance. If you don't want to use it, best to call them and ask about disabling the dispenser so you don't get continued error messages.

Newer Mieles have a Tab setting, which disables the rinse aid. So if you've got a Quantum tab or another one with rinse aid in it, use Tab setting. If you're using a Method (no rinse aid) it's best to not enable the tab setting so the rinse aid works. I messed up with the Tab setting however and probably used double rinse aid which didn't seem to matter occasionally.

Etching is caused by soft water, excessive heat (either in wash or rinse cycles) and detergent. But even when I used 1 tsp of the Cascade powdered there was still etching because we have a whole-house softener and things weren't properly adjusted. My final rinse was too hot. The person at customer care who helped me reprogram the dwasher knew what she was doing and it took less than 10 minutes. No more etching.

Many people never experience etching at all, however.

If we didn't have a septic I'd probably use the Finish Quantum all the time (thank you larsi!). Results with Methods are just as good but those don't get stains out of the coffee cups the way the Finish do.

OTOH, catmom swears by her newer Miele tabs while they caused trouble for fauxguy. No single solution.

This post was edited by rococogurl on Tue, Mar 19, 13 at 16:57

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 2:46PM
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Did anyone ever confirm that the Miele tabs are made by Henkel (Somat)? In Germany, they used to be made by a Swiss company called Claro and now by Dalli - a company who usually supplies Lidl and Aldi with various cleaning products.


    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 4:34PM
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I used to use Cascade and things came out pretty good - then Miele rep gave me a couple of Miele tabs and Zowie - the dishes were even cleaner!
I was sold and figured and use them all of the time. I just used the Miele conditioner and the DW looks brand new (although I will save the little bottle and try the Appliance Doctor Tang trick next round!

The newer dishwashers need dirt to clean or they shut off too soon - I think the etching comes from not cleaning enough vs the enzymes but not a chemistry major....

In any case, if you have never seen this video - it is a hoot.
I use this in some of my training classes if the class needs a pick up. - What not to do with an iPad.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 9:13PM
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The old Miele tabs were made by Claro. The new ones by Dalli. Rinse aid and salt are still Claro made. I'm not that keen on the current Miele tabs either. Pots and pans come out with a white film where soil was.
I've had the best luck with Somat powder. It should, there's 30% phosphorous in the formula, superlative results. Cascade complete powder is a second. I'm currently using the new cascade platinum pacs and Costco pacs with good results so far.
This is in a La Perla II, softener engaged

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 9:39PM
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1/2 Miele tab for over 6 years. No etching that I notice. I also use the Miele Rinse Aid.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2013 at 11:55PM
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I thought the Somat brand (powder, tabs) weren't available in the US. I know someone here said before they had a friend in Germany that would send them the Somat 5 or new Somat 9 tabs.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2013 at 2:49PM
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I buy Somat powder from productswithstyle.com, not cheap, but neither are Miele tabs.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2013 at 10:58PM
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I will have to check out the Somat products. I saw both the powder and tabs listed - not sure if really available but will have to click to see.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2013 at 6:09AM
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Miele Futura Dimension (Whole house water softener
DW water softener off- no salt used in it
No Jet Dry or similar
One Finish Quantum tab per load
Perfect results EVERY time
Is the only detergent so far in any of my dishwashers that takes the brown stains out of my mugs from tea staining

    Bookmark   March 21, 2013 at 7:00AM
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Miele recommended Finish detergents when I purchased our dishwasher last year. First I tried the tabs (with the red dot), but now we use the liquid. Both seem to clean about the same, I just like using the liquid better.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 5:37PM
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I got a Miele Futura Dimension last year, and was also told to use powder. I was strongly discouraged from using action-tabs type of detergent, so I use powder Cascade.

I use jet dry or cascade as a rinse agent. This thing seems to eat rinse agent as I am forever getting the "refill rinse" warning on the panel (ok probably once a month, but it seems like it is constant).

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 5:50PM
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You then need to read your instruction book and adjust the rinse aid dispenser. On mine, there is a setting of 0-6, where 0 is off, 3 is the default amount of 3ml, and 6 is the max of 6ml. I had it set to the default of 3, then adjusted it to 2, and then to 1. I've been using the 1 (1ml) setting for 2 years, and only refill it every 3-4 months. A setting of 3-6 was too much rinse aid, and made some glasses feel sticky.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 6:40PM
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OMG Fauguy, I cannot believe I have had my Miele DW all this time, and didn't know about the rinse-aid dispenser adjustment. I just checked mine, and yup, there it is! It was set to 3, and has been set to 3 for the several years I have had this DW. I always felt like Xamsx mentioned above, like I had to refill rinse-aid too often, which is one of the reasons I use the cheap Jetdry (Jetdry works fine in any case). Now I will experiment with the settings to 2 and to 1, and see how it goes. You made my day Fauguy!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 8:29PM
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akchicago- too funny - yes it can drink a lot of rinse aid but since I have been using the Miele tabs (and I assume since they say Miele on them, they are OK) I turned off the rinse aid.
Now what to do with all of the bottles I got on sale!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 9:22PM
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a2gemini- send to me !

"...and didn't know about the rinse-aid dispenser adjustment"
me neither, thanks for the info.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 11:25PM
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Thanks for the heads-up on the rinse-aid adjustment.

I use half Method Smarty tabs most of the time; Finish Powerball tabs when the wash looks dirtier than usual.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2013 at 10:55PM
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EatRealFood - where are you located? LOL

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 8:07PM
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the center of the universe-ny :)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 10:38PM
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EATREALFOOD: "the center of the universe-ny :)"

It is always difficult to break the news to a NyuuYawker, but the Center of the Known Universe is Very Close to: longitude -122.678803, latitude 45.519038.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 11:34PM
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I had been using Finish tabs in my Optima successfully for 2 years. I recently tried switching to Ecover powder because we're on septic and wanted something more eco-friendly, and while the dishes came out clean, it appears to have killed my machine. I think we must have had a sudsing problem or something.

I had very poor luck experimenting with the Method tabs - everything came out covered in white film.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 1:59PM
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I use powdered Cascade complete, from Sam's Club. A big box lasts me about 6-8 months. I need to see about adjusting the rinse aid, mine seems to drink it, too. On the other hand, that machine runs a minimum of twice a day, frequently more, so maybe it's just getting legitimately used up. :-)

I use a tablespoon of Cascade, but I see above where others use one Teaspoon. Does anyone else use just a teaspoon and get decent results? I'm sure that all the dirt will get knocked off the dishes, but are they really clean if you're not using enough detergent? If I could get by with less, that would be just fine, but how does one know? I'm already using less than the instructions say.


    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 9:36PM
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fauguy even the default with all that rinse aid doesn't leave the glasses perfectly clear, so I will have to continue with the rinse-aid-feast (and no, we do not have hard water) as lowering the amount of rinse aid will result in even foggier glasses. Maybe I will try raising it. Thanks for the tip.

This post was edited by xamsx on Tue, Mar 26, 13 at 22:23

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 10:21PM
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I like Green Grab tablets - check Amazon

    Bookmark   September 25, 2013 at 7:01PM
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