About 18 months ago, we put our house up for sale. As is often the case when you get ready to sell a home, we discovered that several things needed to be repaired or replaced. On top of it all, suddenly our dishwasher just wasn’t getting our dishes clean anymore.
The machine, a 7 year old Bosche, worked great for a long time. Now, however, the glasses had a white film. We had a technician come and he found nothing wrong. I scoured the internet for solutions, and the little bit of information I was able to find blamed the problem on hard water.
So, It was off to the grocery store, again and again. I tried kinds of descaling products. The dishwasher was squeaky clean, but the dishes still weren’t getting clean. I finally found a detergent that worked all right, but not perfectly by any means.
When we moved, we needed to purchase a new dishwasher. I decided to phone a few repairmen to see what manufacturer they recommend. After telling them about my Bosche that suddenly went bad, one repairman asked, “Was this about a year ago?” “Yes” I responded. Well, he went on to tell me that there was nothing wrong with my prior Bosche, but that was just about the time that the detergent manufacturers started to remove phosphates from their residential use detergents.
Ahhhh! Mystery solved. If you chose, you can purchase TSP to add to each load or purchase commercial detergents which still contain phosphates. Whether or not phosphates are harmful to the environment is up for debate. Jill Cataldo wrote a great article regarding the issue. http://www.jillcataldo.com/phosphatedetergents I would be interested to hear your feedback or other solutions to getting dishes clean.
I use plain white vinegar in place of a rinse-aid. We have very hard water here and it works fine. It’s cheap and I like the idea of no chemical residue on my dishes.