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How to Load the Dishwasher

A dishwasher makes clean up much easier, especially if you load it properly. Putting each item in correctly will help the water and suds do the dirty work for you.


  • Step 1: Pull out bottom drawer Open the dishwasher and pull the bottom drawer out all the way so the door stays open.
  • Step 2: Scrape dishes Scrape food particles off dishes and into the garbage; if necessary, rinse off large globs in the sink.
  • TIP: Most dishwashers can handle any mess, but caked-on or burnt food may require old-fashioned elbow grease.
  • Step 3: Stand dishes between pegs Starting at one side of the bottom drawer, stand dishes up between the pegs, all facing the same way.
  • TIP: Most items today are dishwasher safe, but if you're not sure, ask a grownup to check for cleaning instructions.
  • Step 4: Place pots and pans face down Place pots, pans, and casserole dishes on the bottom rack, facing down.
  • Step 5: Pull out top rack Pull out the top rack; this is where you’ll put cups, glasses, and large cooking utensils like spatulas and long serving spoons.
  • Step 6: Load glassware Empty glasses and cups into the sink and fit them securely over the prongs.
  • TIP: A full dishwasher runs best, so load it up before you start a wash cycle.
  • Step 7: Place silverware in baskets Place silverware into the baskets, which are usually on the inside of the dishwasher door. Forks and spoons go in handle first, and knives go in with handles facing out.
  • TIP: Mix up the utensils or else they will stick together and may not get clean.
  • Step 8: Add detergent Get an adult to help you fill the cups with dishwashing detergent and rinse agent, and start the cycle. Before you know it, the dishes will be clean again!
  • FACT: The dishwasher was invented in 1886 by a rich Illinois woman named Josephine Cochrane, but it didn't become popular until the 1950s.

You Will Need

  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Dishwashing rinse

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