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washing dishes: by hand vs. dishwasher

 
Trailboss
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Three times in the last 24 hours I was told that it is absolute fact that dishwashers use less water. And when I try to explain how I think I use less water than a dishwasher .... well, my message doesn't get though.

So I made this video in a feeble attempt to express myself.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9kVsnTQh-g&feature=email




 
Rancher
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paul wheaton wrote:Three times in the last 24 hours I was told that it is absolute fact that dishwashers use less water.


I don't believe this "fact" in any absolute sense. I can believe that some styles of hand washing use more water than people think, and that some practices are wasteful.
 
author
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I too, am a believer that washing by hand is the way to go -- for two reasons... I don't use enough dishes to have a full load (unless I am willing to have dirty dishes sitting in the dishwasher for a week). And for many years, my dishwasher didn't work -- and if it wasn't so awkward, I would have used it to store dishes.


Having said that, I have recently renovated my kitchen. Including relocating the dishwasher to a less awkward location, and getting a high end dishwasher. So, I guess I have to learn to use the dishwasher, as you are not supposed to not use it for a long period of time.

Henry
 
Pat Farrell
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Henry Wong wrote:as you are not supposed to not use it for a long period of time.


There may be some exceptions, but I can't think of any machinery that is OK with being ignored for long lengths of time. Things with seals and bearings (cars, boats, dishwashers, etc.) tend to end up with leaking seals and bad bearings. Electronics don't age well, capacitors get all weird if they are not used regularly.

Maybe a sword....
 
Ranch Hand
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Indian food is oilier and dish washer just fails there. Apart from that, I use 'Pressure Cooker' often for cooking and it is too complex for dishwasher to clean.
 
Marshal
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paul wheaton taken out of context wrote:...dishwashers use less water.



I use a dishwasher every other day (it takes the two of us two days to fill it up, usually). But I don't put everything in it. Knives with wooden handles, mugs and other things which aren't dishwasher-proof, and so on. So basically we do both.

But I don't use the running-water style of washing dishes. I'm sure that could use more water than a dishwasher load. I'm not convinced that filling the sink with 6 inches of water is more than a dishwasher load.
 
Java Cowboy
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I don't have a dishwasher. I wash the dishes by hand, and I'm sure I don't use more than 2 gallons of water to do the dishes. I can't imagine how a dishwasher can use less water than doing it by hand.
 
Marshal
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We hardly ever eat out, so I do all the cooking.

You can have my dishwasher when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers!

 
Henry Wong
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To continue the point about the kitchen renovation... even though I can live without a dishwasher, and have done so for years, not having a dishwasher where I live is a big no-no.

Every kitchen in NYC has a dishwasher, and the last thing that you want is to lower the value of your home because of a missing piece of equipment. This is why we have a high end one, and went through the trouble of placing it perfectly in the room -- Perfect distant from the sink. Does not interfere with cooking or washing when the door is lowered. Matches the other appliances. etc. etc.

Henry

 
Ranch Hand
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Henry Wong, using my midwestern US bias wrote:
Every kitchen in NYC has a dishwasher...



Because everything in NYC is so faced-paced and on-the-go, who has time to do dishes by hand?!?!?!
 
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Hmm,
i don't have a dishwasher and i'm sure i use more water than a good one. But whats the point with using a bit more water in a non arid area? Isn't it electricity consumption that has the real impact on the eco footprint?
 
author & internet detective
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Henry Wong wrote:Every kitchen in NYC has a dishwasher, and the last thing that you want is to lower the value of your home because of a missing piece of equipment. This is why we have a high end one, and went through the trouble of placing it perfectly in the room -- Perfect distant from the sink. Does not interfere with cooking or washing when the door is lowered. Matches the other appliances. etc. etc.


The last two places I have lived have not. Maybe you mean every non-rental has a dishwasher?

Of course my "kitchen" leaves a lot to be desired. Like a counter and a place for the microwave. The microwave I get, but people still needed counters years ago.
 
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I also avoid using dish washer because of the reason mentioned above by Vikas & also, I simply don't "trust" it.
 
ankur rathi
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... and frankly, I never gave a thought about water or electricity consumption in my whole life so far.
 
Pat Farrell
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Of course my "kitchen" leaves a lot to be desired. Like a counter and a place for the microwave. The microwave I get, but people still needed counters years ago.


When was it built? In the late 50s and early 60s, the claim was that TV dinners would free the housewife of the slavery of the kitchen, and so the kitchens of that era were tiny.

I was raised in a house built in the early 1930s, and it had very little counter space. It had drainboards out of each side of the sink, and maybe a four foot counter. This was a fairly large house, four bedrooms, two baths in the 30s, it was not a typical post war little box on the hillside.
 
Sheriff
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Washing?
 
Henry Wong
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Pat Farrell wrote:
When was it built? In the late 50s and early 60s, the claim was that TV dinners would free the housewife of the slavery of the kitchen, and so the kitchens of that era were tiny.



It is amazing what a few decades of having an "arms race" for the best tile floors, cabinets, countertops, appliances, back splashes, etc. will do. This "slave den" is now the center of the home.

Henry
 
Henry Wong
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marc weber wrote:Washing?



Having just gone through a kitchen renovation, I'll admit that using paper and plastic is an interesting option. Although, any "green" achieved from the water savings is probably mitigated by the killing of trees and the filling of landfills...

Henry
 
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Of course I can't miss an opportunity to talk about water conservation

If you REALLY want to cut down on your water use, stop eating mammals. A pound of beef takes about 3,000 gallons of water to produce... that's a lot of dishwasher cycles.
 
Sheriff
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Bert Bates wrote:Of course I can't miss an opportunity to talk about water conservation

If you REALLY want to cut down on your water use, stop eating mammals. A pound of beef takes about 3,000 gallons of water to produce... that's a lot of dishwasher cycles.



How much water does it take to create a pound of fish?
 
Sheriff
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A pond of beef takes even more water.
 
Rancher
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A pond of beef takes even more water.


Maybe not if you consider that the fish needs additional water to live in
 
Christophe Verré
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Ulf Dittmer wrote:Maybe not if you consider that the fish needs additional water to live in


Aahh, that's right. Let's not put all the blame on beef after all. Did you know that their poop could reduce energy costs ?
 
Bert Bates
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We also have to distinguish between saltwater fish and freshwater fish
 
marc weber
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Wikipedia - Virtual Water
 
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