Flatware... my knives are pitting.

SheeshareeIISeptember 7, 2009

Without doing any researching I bought a set of Wallace 18/10 stainless steel flatware, new in the box, off ebay. I liked the pattern and the fact that it was a large, new set. I thought Wallace was a good brand.

Shortly after we started using them I noticed some pitting on my knives. I wasn't real happy so I emailed the seller and Wallace complaining. They informed me most all flatware is made in China and the pitting problem can be helped by putting the knives in a section by themselves in the dishwasher. They're made of different alloys or something like that. Most of my knives have some pitting and it looks horrible. I can't imagine it's real good to be using them like that. Returning wasn't an option. I ordered the set before we even started building the house so it sat for months never opened and boxed up. We've been using the flatware for about a year and a half now.

Is this common with all flatware? I've considered buying a differnt brand but don't want to have this problem again. It's not like we use the knives often (just DH and myself) but when company's over...

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When you say pitting are you talking about little marks or actual pits in the blades?

My knives do that too a bit. Try taking some bar keepers friend and trying to polish them off.

I think they're right in that the blades of the knives shouldn't touch other types of metal in the dishwasher or that can happen.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 2:02PM
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The only flatware that I put in the dishwasher is our everyday stuff. Anything and everything else gets hand washed. I've learned what automatic dishwaher detergent does to flatware, particularly knives.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 4:19PM
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Shee, dishwashing detergent can cause this.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pitting

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 4:52PM
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I have had this problem, too. I read in Consumer Reports some time ago that a way to reduce dishwasher pitting is to use a non-lemon dishwashing detergent. Since I've stopped using lemon Cascade, and keeping my knives separate from everything else, the problem has just about stopped.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 5:02PM
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Caroleoh - Little round pits in the blades. I'll try some of the bar keepers friend.

I noticed this after only a couple of washes. We used the kind of dishwashing tablet that had the blue ball(can't think of the name) only a couple of times then I gave the box away and switched to Seveth Generation powder. I haven't noticed any more since the switch but I had quite a few by that point.

I just wondered if it's normal to deal with this. I do make sure they're by themselves now in the dishwasher or hand wash them.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 5:17PM
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The same thing happens to my "good name 18/10 stainless."

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 6:49PM
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This is interesting. Found this on the net:

question by sales rep

And this discussion is long but illuminating. Seems like it's inferior steel perhaps aggravated by stainless steel dishwasher interiors: many brands and price ranges, rusting problems

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 11:27PM
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I have 2 different sets of stainless, one cheap, and one of better quality. I have never had a problem with pitting.

They are washed in a dishwasher and mixed in with other utensils. The dishwasher is not stainless steel on the inside. We have hard water that is softened with a water softener. Our water is well water without chlorine. And I use Cascade that is labeled "fresh scent" but there is no mention of a lemon scent.

Hope this helps somehow.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 8:15AM
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I did the same thing as you, Shee, and purchased a brand-new set of really nice Towle stainless steel flatware on Ebay. It was quite expensive and arrived looking fantastic, but I've noticed that a couple of the teaspoons have small pits.

I don't think it's the dishwasher since I use it so rarely. My guess is that the seller (huge Powerseller with 1,000's of sales) somehow bought the lesser-quality stuff from the manufacturer and sold it on Ebay to trusting folks like us. Awm03's link talks about the different levels of steel quality and I wonder if, when the manufacturer discovered a particular lot with problems, they'd off-load it on the cheap to the Ebay dealer. Oh well, it's still a gorgeous set and I've only had the problem with 2 teaspoons.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 8:55AM
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I've had a few baking pans ruined in the dishwasher from lemon detergent when I was too lazy to wash them by hand one time. The pitting was so bad I was afraid to bake in them, so I put them in the trash. Shee: my dad worked at the original Wallace Silverware factory with the designs before it closed in the early 1980's (and moved to Japan). My whole family has sets of flatware/holloware that are so much higher quality than the set I purchased at Macy's in 1995. My knives from the newer set occasionally did get a few very tiny pit marks on them when I used the old detergent, but never the set made in the US. I hope my set lasts forever, because I think of my dad. Good luck with yours.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 2:56PM
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My flatware is 30 years old. Every time I'm tempted to buy new, I'm reminded of things like this. I hand wash my cooking knives, but the flatware goes in the dishwasher which has a stainless interior. I use Finish Electrasol Powerball tabs.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 3:07PM
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