When we moved into our “new” house, it came with a nearly-decade-old generic dishwasher, a far cry from the Kenmore Elite we had back at our old house. Ah, well. No biggie. It still works, we mused; no use in spending money for a new dishwasher when we could run this one into the ground. Right?
Our decision to keep the dishwasher was second-guessed the minute we pulled out our first load of “cleaned” dishes. Yuck! There were nasty spots over everything, and lip prints decorated the rims of every drinking glass, when there were no noticeable prints before the wash. Were we just that spoiled? Would we just have to get used to a three-hour wash cycle with pathetic results? I even added white vinegar to the rinse cycle but alas, nothing.
Plus, I had read on the interwebs that over time, the vinegar will corrode the plastic rinse wash container, leaving possibly serious damage.
Enter the Lemi-Shine
I headed to the local grocery store to see if there were any possible solutions. My eyes landed on the Lemi-Shine. It seemed to make big promises, but I decided to give it a run. My, it was expensive! Especially for such a small container.
We followed the directions on the bottle. Run a wash with no dishes, just the Lemi-Shine to deep clean the hard water residue and various unnamed dish-spoilers. Check.
We then loaded the dishes into the dishwasher. I promise it doesn’t take more than one person to load our dishwasher… it just sounds better when I say “we”.
I/we placed our regular dish detergent in the pre-wash section, and filled up the detergent dispenser with the Lemi-Shine, per their instructions. Ran the load of dishes, attempted more unpacking of boxes. Little did we know I would be blogging about our dishwashing tale seven months later and there would still be unpacked boxes. Will we ever be unpacked?
Anywho, much to our delight, the Lemi-shine worked wonders. Truly. The dishes came out just as clean and sparkly bright as they did in our prided Kenmore Elite. Jackpot!
There was still one problem: the stuff was expensive! It wasn’t a dealbreaker, but I cringed every time I had to purchase a new container, which seemed to last two weeks or so. Since we have become Amazon Prime members, I have taken to trying to buy more things in bulk, using their (awesome, right?) free two-day shipping. Amazon did carry the Lemi-shine, in a two-pack, but the price wasn’t enough of an improvement to satisfy me.
Hmm….isn’t Lemi-Shine just citric acid with a little lemon extract added? What about that?
BINGO! Clean Dishes on the Horizon
My quest ended here:
And there we had it. I ordered the citric acid, poured it first into my old Lemi-Shine container that I keep by the sink, and then poured the rest into an unused half-gallon canning jar. Perfect.
The citric acid, by the way, actually works better on our dishes than the Lemi-Shine did. I use a scant tablespoonful per load along with my regular detergent. It seems as if it will last forever. There is a ten-pound option… but let’s not get crazy.
Ultimately, the perfect dishwasher hack, citric acid. Lots to love about that.