dishwasher can't clean a spoon ?

snowglobeNovember 18, 2013

I recently bought a Bosch Ascenta dishwasher. I have owned it just a few months. It washes about 80% of the stuff. The remaining 20% I have to re-wash. It couldn't clean a simple wooden spoon? Please see photo.

I had a Bosch dishwasher about 10 yrs ago and don't remember having unclean dishes or utensils and it was very quiet--that's why I bought another one. I also know how to load a dishwasher.

--I don't over-crowd it.
--I lightly rinse everything prior.
--I use the correct amt of soap (cascade powder) for our softened water.
--I have the rinse aid in it.
--I make sure the water is good and hot prior to starting it
--I tried both the "auto" cycle and "normal cycle" and "sanitize" option. It washes for quite a while (although quietly).

Is there something I am not thinking of? Do i need to scrub everything completely clean before putting it in the machine? Could its claim to fame be the quietness, so not enough water force is used? I guess I rather have a dishwasher as loud as a screaming jet engine if it cleaned ALL the dishes.

Am I being unreasonable? H E L P

This post was edited by snowglobe on Mon, Nov 18, 13 at 17:21

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spoon photo... forgot it in the first post...

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 5:20PM
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found the spoon photo

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 5:24PM
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I turned your picture 90ð for viewing clarity.

May get better results with the spoon by placing it handle-up, bowl-down.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 6:51PM
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Is that rice? Rice gluten is particularly clingy, and more so on wood than slippery stainless. If it's rice, did you add a touch of oil to make the kernels less clumpy? If you didn't, then dishwasher soap would have a tougher time emulsifying with them than water/grease/kernels on a wooden spoon.

That said, you'd think the water sprayer arms would have gotten to it, either through enough spray force. Otoh, the concave rice-laden side of the spoon is facing out with its back towards the sprayer arms.

Just a few thoughts....I've had this happen too.

This post was edited by SparklingWater on Mon, Nov 18, 13 at 19:31

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 7:19PM
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Hi, the spoon was facing in. I turned it for the photo. On the spoon is Cream of Wheat, aka "farina." (One of my favorite quick dinners on a cold windy night).

I now put utensils with the dirty end up since they don't clean when I have them face down in the basket. I guess it doesn't matter.

Maybe I will just wash coffee cups in this thing--it seems to clean them just fine. Plus, I drink a lot of coffee.

Thank you for trying to help me figure it out. At first I thought I just needed to get used to this new machine. After several tries of various cycles, various placements, I have decided it just doesn't wash all that effectively. The spoon is just one example. Too bad I can't tear it out, throw it in my car and return it to the store.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 7:44PM
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I'm really sorry you're having a bad time with your new DW. Why not make a call to the manufacturer's customer service line and talk with them? Run through a series of checks?

As to Cream of Wheat Farina, oh I love it too especially in winter. I'm more a dinner snacker than true eater, so think I'll try it some night rather than just as morning food. Thanks.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 8:05PM
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Have you tried an enzyme based detergent? Basically since the formula changes in detergent the only thing that will breakdown the starches are enzyme based detergents. I don't think any dishwasher cleans very well without using enzymes.
You may want to try the Finish tabs or the Cascade pods. Both are enzyme based. You might also try calling Cascade to ask them what they recommend.

Even though you're not really supposed to wash wooden spoons in a dishwasher we occasionally do but we lay them down in the top rack so they get better wash action from the spray.
As mentioned above, food really sticks hard onto wood and is harder to clean.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 8:08PM
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No not familiar with enzyme soap, but will look at it for sure. Also didn't know you can't wash wooden spoons in DW. I love wooden spoons. I have a billion of them.

That washer doesn't clean regular silverware very well either, or bowls. Sure hope this enzyme thing does the trick.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 10:13PM
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With things that dry on: mashed potatoes, rice, oatmeal, etc, I scrub of the major crud before washing.

IMO if the DW is that heavy duty to take that glob Cream of Wheat off, it's gonna be hard on your dishes.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 2:32PM
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Reading all these threads about dishwasher shortcomings, I keep wondering why would anyone put up with them.

The DW must be one of the most useless and overrated appliances in one's kitchen. It doesn't clean that well, it requires harsh detergents, it's picky about the water properties, it may damage the things being washed, it often require the user's intervention. More work, wastes undercounter space, costs money.

What's wrong with hand-washing?

I will now step off the smugness crate...

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 2:54PM
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I live in Grand Forks, North Dakota, where Cream of Wheat was invented in 1893. It sticks to the ribs as well as it sticks to spoons!

I don't usually put wooden spoons in the DW, but when I do, I lay them on the top rack, and they come out clean (I've never tried the Cream of Wheat test, however).

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 4:45PM
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Gigelus, I happen to agree with you. I just replaced my broken dishwasher after not using one for 6 years. At least when I was done handwashing, I knew everything was clean. There is something comforting about washing dishes in warm soapy water--brings me back to my childhood I guess. It's especially fun if you have someone to dry as you wash. I may just go back to that--it wasn't that bad.

DWs are overrated... you can't wash teflon, big pots/pans (won't fit); good stemware, china or crystal. Now I find out I am not supposed to put in wooden spoons (of which I use prob everyday). Never realized this. Also find out I can't just use dishwasher detergent because it doesn't work without "enzymes". Then why do they sell it?

On a good note, a DW is a great HIDING place. It serves to hide all those filthy dishes as you dirty them and it does it so well. When its full enough to run, it becomes a huge mystery box. When it finally shuts off after running for what feels like half a day--the big reveal--then the let down --Sifting through the half washed (or no washed) 20% of the load.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 7:10PM
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"IMO if the DW is that heavy duty to take that glob Cream of Wheat off, it's gonna be hard on your dishes".

This surprises me! It's cereal. Not plaster or cement. A dishwasher is not expected to take farina off a spoon?

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 7:12PM
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Annkh, When I was little, my mom always told me about C of W sticking to my ribs... as I kid I thought that was disgusting. Horrible visual. I am surprised I still eat the stuff.

it's awfully good especially the way I make it with low-fat margarine spooned in and a nice topping of cinnamon sugar.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 7:16PM
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@snowglobe: "This surprises me! It's cereal. Not plaster or cement. A dishwasher is not expected to take farina off a spoon? "

What do you think wallpaper paste is made of? Wheat. Wheat paste has been used as a glue for centuries.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 9:09AM
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My boys eat cream of wheat or cocoa wheats every morning. They love it.

I love my F/P dish drawers but this stuff is like concrete if it dries on. I always let the pan soak in the sink for a bit before putting it in the dishwasher and I use a silicone spoon. Wooden spoon ? Fugetaboutit!

I don't let dh clean up because if he doesn't rinse out the sink (which he never does) then the concrete covers the entire bottom of the sink.

I wouldn't judge the DW by this spoon :-)

    Bookmark   November 21, 2013 at 10:28AM
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any time you dishwasher haters want to come over and wash my dishes, your welcome.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2013 at 10:55AM
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i think the dishwasher should be able to clean the spoon well even though it's wood.

However, I do not put anything made of wood (unless it's a wood handle that doesn't touch food) in the dishwasher. I don't think you are suppose to. Wood is porous and will absorb detergent and chemicals and I do not want them leak back into my food. The oil in wood also has it's own anti-bacterial properties so washing it with detergent wash away the oil that is good for the wood. So, for anything wood (spoon, chopsticks, spatula), one should just hand wash them in hot water only (no detergent).

    Bookmark   November 21, 2013 at 1:40PM
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I am not familiar with the name you gave for your Bosch. Is it one of the newer 3 shelf models in the 800 Plus line? I have read many favorable reviews here of those.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2013 at 1:46PM
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I put almost everything in the dishwasher from large pots to crystal stemware. Dishwashers use less water and generally higher temperature than hand washing.

My Miele cleans almost everything. I haven't made any cream of wheat recently but tons of oatmeal. Once in a while I put something in wrong and it is blocked during the wash cycle. I don't rinse anything(DH rinses but working on him). I occasionally soak a crispy dish.

Now for a trivia question - was the model on the cream of wheat box a real person and is so, where is he buried?
For those who don't want to check the link- he was a real person and is buried, in all places, Leslie, Michigan.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2013 at 1:30AM
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Wood spoons like that will get very dry over time, especially in a damp long wash cycle. Wood is very porous when it looses its natural, original, 'when purchased', sanded surface. Some are even rough right out of the box. Usually cheaper lighter wood is used. I don't put my good ones in the dishwasher....the hardwood gifted ones. They would actually hold up better being such dense wood. I hand wash, then dry immediately, let further dry on the counter, then oil them. Not fussy.
Takes no time really.
You could take your woodens, i have a dozen or so, and seasonally, just 4-6 times a year, give them a quick sanding with a fine sandpaper. I have a half folded sheet in my kitchen "junk' drawer. Especially if you have a couple favorite ones like i do. Then oil them with a paper towel. It seals it, seasons it, like furniture, and they will perform better, not just cooking, but will help in releasing food by hand washing or in the dishwasher. Similar to a wooden cutting boards. They will last for years if oiled.
You might like a bamboo set. Very dense and don't need much care. A couple dollars for a set.
I use a bit of cast iron and use wood 90% of the time being much easier on cookware. And less scraping noise. Any cooking oil is fine for a well used one. Some oils go rancid over time if put away in a drawer. A neutral mineral oil is good for less used tools.
If it feels rough to the touch it is dried out and has microscopic 'teeth'. Sticky food sticks.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2013 at 12:48PM
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Dishwashers work in mysterious ways. Mine washed charred pasta off an enamel pot, while leaving some rice residue on a non-stick pot. Still, I'm very happy with it.

I agree with the above poster: wooden utensils tend to become rough over time when washed in a dishwasher. Food then sticks to them like Velcro.


Here is a link that might be useful: My Detergent Test

    Bookmark   November 22, 2013 at 3:10PM
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The last time I put a loved wooden spoon in the dishwasher - my vintage risotto spoon - it split. No more, I hand wash them.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2013 at 7:11PM
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I had a Bosch Ascenta in my last house. Everything went in, nothing ever rinsed, including wooden spoons. It was rare that something didn't come out clean. I also never ran the hot water prior. Check your lower spray arm. You may have a clogged spray jet.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2013 at 4:06AM
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I may be old fashioned, but having just recently bought a new DW for a new house, I did a lot of research on them. Almost every manual for every DW said to *scrape off* clingy food particles before loading the DW. Not necessary to rinse, but scrape, yes.

From your photo, it looks like there's quite a clump of that Cream of Wheat. How does the DW do if you've scraped? (And FWIW, I also strongly agree with prior posters -- wood anything does not belong in a DW. The detergents are harsh, they remove the natural oils (which make wood antibacterial), and open up the pores in the wood. Which is why they get rough.)


    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 11:47AM
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