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Should I Get A Dishwasher - Myths Vs Truths for Indian Kitchens

1 September, 2021


There was a sudden surge in Indians buying washing machines, vacuum cleaners, etc., post the first Coronavirus lockdown in March 2020. This trend was due to the possibility of having to live without the maid for future lockdowns. People also chose to go in for dishwashers, even if with a little trepidation.

With the whole family at home, it meant more cooking, eating and snacking. It meant more utensils for washing, and with no maid in sight, women in the family were having a tough time. Perhaps, this was the best trigger for Indian households to consider an appliance like a dishwasher. 

Perhaps what stopped them from buying something so useful earlier were many doubts and myths floating around. The ordinary Indian would say, ‘Oh, but those are for Western households. They cook less at home, use glass and ceramic crockery without much oil and masala, they don’t cook rice daily or boil milk like us, etc.’ Then, finally, there is this ‘feeling’ that dishwashers just cannot beat washing by hand! 

Yes, the Indian style of cooking is very different from that of the West. But almost all appliance manufacturers considered this and have customized their products to suit the Indian kitchen. So here’s why you could do a rethink if you have been putting off this purchase. 

#1. They are expensive

Dishwashers from credible brands come in the range of INR 30,000 to INR 40,000. In this price range, you get the best ones that can service households of all sizes. The initial investment may seem high, but when you compare it with the cost of a maid across a period of years, it proves to be more than worth the investment. Especially considering the risks involved in having a maid over during such times, the uncertainty of their availability, etc., the expense of the dishwasher may prove to be a wise investment overall. As a senior, it also gives you freedom from waiting for help to turn up and getting disturbed at odd hours. 

#2. They use more water

As compared to washing utensils by hand, the dishwasher uses less water more wisely and effectively. A comparison estimation says that dishwashers only use around 10 litres of water vs 100 litres to wash the same by hand! So, while saving on the maid cost and reducing the water usage, you also save on water bills. 

#3. They consume more electricity

Like most other electric appliances, dishwashers come with energy star ratings. Hence, you could easily compare and purchase one with the most optimum electric usage. Also, they only use electricity for heating the water and since the water used is lesser, electricity usage also reduces. 

#4. Not suited for Indian kitchens

What about the aluminium rice cooker, the steel milk vessel, the copper bottom stained Kadai, the frying pan, the small tadka pan, the Tawa, the small glasses, the spoons, the bowls, etc.? Most manufacturers have customized their appliances to suit Indian needs. They have created space to accommodate Indian utensils of all sizes and shapes. 

They have also created programs to suit the various needs like heavy wash and pre-wash. that can handle even the stubborn stains. So, all the grease and oil of the typical Indian cooking are managed well in the dishwasher. The dishwashers can handle delicate crockery with care and handle steel, aluminium, wood, and glass utensils too. The dishwasher can wash non-stick utensils also with no harm to their Teflon coating.

#5. They need pre-rinsing

If it needs a pre-rinse, then we might as well do the complete washing in one go - another myth about the dishwasher. There is no pre-rinse needed for dishes; one only needs to remove the food leftovers. The leftovers can clog the dishwasher. Hence, it is essential to remove them from the utensils before stacking them into the dishwasher. The truth is that when you pre-rinse utensils, it affects the quality of washing and is ideally not recommended by the manufacturers.

#6. Full-load is needed

No, you don’t need to wait till you get a machine full of utensils to run your dishwasher. Many dishwashers come with a half-load facility that can run equally efficiently. Even otherwise, the technology used in dishwashers is such that it uses tiny jet hole sprays and rotating arms to ensure maximum cleaning with minimal water.

#7. They take more time

Most dishwashers take lesser time to load, clean, and unload the dried utensils than washing by hand and air-drying them. Dishwashers use high temperatures with less water and electricity at a lesser time to ensure maximum savings on all these aspects. They even use less detergent in this whole process.

#8.  Handwashing is more hygienic

Going by scientific evidence, dishwashers prove to be more safe and hygienic than washing by hand. There is a myth that it may become a bacteria breeding ground. But the truth is that the scrub/sponge used for washing by hand may be the one that aids the growth of bacteria! They are used without proper care, and kept along with the detergent, and wet most often. Thus, they are the perfect breeding grounds for bacteria. As compared, a dishwasher uses high temperatures, ensuring the total removal of bacteria. Also, handwash may leave detergent residue on the utensils that may not be visible to the naked eye. This aspect is also totally avoided in a dishwasher as they use sensors.

Key Takeaway: Dishwashers are fully suited for Indian kitchens and offer a lot in savings – time, money, water, electricity, detergent. They are safe, easy and convenient to use and healthier too. YouTube provides a lot of videos for Indian users on usage and tips and tricks.

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