The dishwasher washes everything in it using pressurized water jets, and provided that these jets are not blocked and the nozzles are well uncorked. One, two or three rotating arms equipped with sprinklers sprinkle warm to very hot water on the dishes, according to a cycle whose duration is calculated to ensure removal of food crusts whatever their nature (burnt fats, caramelized sugars, various residues). To be effective, the rotating water jet must be powerful and last long enough. As a result, there is a part of the dishes, deemed fragile, that are not recommended, or permitted, to be machine washed. The water temperature can reach 75°C. The noise level reached during a wash is between 45 and 65 decibels. A device that emits between 40 and 50 dB is considered very quiet.
The dishwashing liquid used to wash dishes by hand should not be used in the machine, as it will produce considerable foam. The dishwasher requires a specific product based on non-foaming surfactants. For decades, this product was distributed in barrels, in powder form, like laundry detergent. For reasons of fashion, marketing and convenience, most washing products now prefer to sell these dishwasher products in doses usually in the form of large sugars, while some dishwasher manufacturers advise against these pre-dosed products and recommend separate products.
The dishwasher consists of the following functional spare parts:
- A hose with tapped connection for connection to the water supply tap;
- A cable with plug for the electrical connection;
- A solenoid valve, which allows the arrival of water in the machine at the times defined by the chosen program;
- A filler/distributor, which directs the water to washing or rinsing and retains some of it for regeneration;
- A water level detector or pressure switch, which manages the amount of water admitted;
- A cycling pump, which sucks water and propels it into the washing arms (or reel);
- A resistor (or immersion heater) that allows the heating of water ;
- A temperature sensor, which controls the heat of the laundry bath;
- A softener, with filler cap for salt, to avoid limescale deposits;
- A reservoir of rinse medium;
- A drain pump, allowing the evacuation of wastewater;
- A removable filter to capture large waste that would interfere with proper functioning
- A hose for the evacuation of waste water;
- A programmer or electronic board, with its control panel, to coordinate the operation of all these organs;
- Different baskets receiving pieces of dishes, cutlery, etc.
- Other optional components are present such as the dirt detector, drying fan, flow meter, etc. and increasingly home automation functions.
Maintenance of Dishwasher
The dishwasher requires more attention than a washing machine. After a few washing cycles, the filter must be cleaned, salt must be regularly added to the softener (to regenerate ion exchange resins), and rinsing liquid (to facilitate the flow of water on cutlery, plates …) in the appropriate tank.
Liquid products, to be used without dishes with a long washing program and a high temperature, dissolve the remains of grease and descale the water circuits (the holes of the washing arms are sometimes blocked by paper or food scraps).
Recent experiments that have made it possible to make ecological regenerating salts (100% sodium chloride) have proven that simple coarse cooking salt is as effective as regenerating salt, without degrading the appliance (the size of the salt crystals is however an important factor). Similarly, the rinse liquid can be replaced by white vinegar, which is less expensive.