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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
i recently started using the dishwasher out of laziness - I was piling up dishes for days and then putting them into the dishwasher at once. running it, say, twice a week.

normally i handwash the dishes daily.

well, the electricity bill jumped by a lot of kilowatt hours compared to this time last year. thirty dollars more.

back to handwashing for me.
 

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That sure seems like alot just for a few times a week. Is it set to heat dry? or to heat the water more?? My light bill this month was $111 and we are all electric. I wont cut out my dishwasher...lol. I do have it set to airdry and not to heat the water.
 

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We used to have an old inefficient dishwasher (it was 12 years old) and it didn't even use that much electricity. Unless you had it on a power sucking setting like freebs mentioned, you might double check it. You can always watch your meter and see how much you are using. I would bet it is something else that did it!
 

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Is your hot water electric too?

You can save some by not using the drying cycle. Either set it to not run, or turn it off when the wash cycle has finished.

Ours has a 'light wash' and a 'water miser' setting that we use.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
gas water heater

i had the dishwasher set to high temp wash. i stop it and turn it off when it reaches the dry cycle.
 

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I always thought that it was considered more thrifty to use the dishwasher instead of handwashing. Hmmm. I'll have to think, but I don't think that I could live without my dishwasher.
 

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I plan menus/meals/cooking so that IDEALLY I run the dishwasher every other day. I read somewhere that it is more efficient (electricity/gas/water) to run a FULL dishwasher load than to wash by hand.

I have all the extras turned off on my dishwasher, use the shortest/quickest cycle, and open it a crack in the evening after it has run so the dishes can dry overnight. I also think the dishwasher does a better job of cutting the grease on dishes, pots, and pans.
 

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I always thought that it was considered more thrifty to use the dishwasher instead of handwashing. Hmmm. I'll have to think, but I don't think that I could live without my dishwasher.
It depends on many variables. You can't say one over another without comparing REAL numbers.

How much water is REALLY used? If you do dishes by hand 2-3 times a day and use the average amount of 5-7 gallons of water each time (2 sinks of water - wash/rinse), then it's less expensive to use a dishwasher - especially an Energy Star model. But you have to compare the number of gallons the dishwasher REALLY uses - and what type of extra heating and number of cycles (including a pre-wash) it goes through.

We've "beat" the system with our "frugal dishwashing method". We do after meal wash-up, and dishes that don't get put in the dishwasher, in approx. 1-gallon of water and NO use of the water heater - plus, we use "saved" water from when we run the shower waiting for the water to get hot.

The key - use a small plastic tub in the sink for holding the wash water, rather than a full sink of water - saving several gallons right there.

Our dishwasher gets run once every 4-6-days. Because we keep dirty dishes in it for so long, we also rinse the dishes off in the 10-cups of wash-up water AFTER we've washed everything else. So no extra water is used for rinsing off the dishes.

Because we've already pre-rinsed the dishes (so well it's sometimes hard to tell if the dishes are clean or dirty - LOL), the dishwasher is run on the shortest cycle - saving energy/water. Only one cup is used for detergent (1 T.) so less detergent is used. High-Temp. wash cycle, but no heated rinse cycle, nor do we use the heated drying option.

Hand-washing method: Five-cups of water is heated in an electric kettle. Using the electric kettle is quicker and more energy efficient than heating water in the microwave or a kettle on the stove because the water is in direct contact with the heating element. And MUCH less expensive than running water from the hot water tank. Place the water in the small plastic tub.

To the 5-cups of hot water we add approximately 5 cups of cold water (also saved water). This is enough water for clean-up and the few dishes and pans that don't go in the dishwasher. We rinse the dishes with the remainder of the 1-gallon of water. The health department said if you wash the dishes in hot soapy water, it didn't matter what temperature the rinse water was.

Our "frugal method" uses less water and less electricity than either the dishwasher OR using hot water from the water tank and FULL sinks of water.
 

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I hand wash. My brand new dishwasher looks like a lonely ol' soul sitting there. Sorry, but I can't justify using all that water and electric. It's much easier to just wash up the few plates, cups and silverwear rather than let them pile up and I can't stand to see a sink full of dishes!

I like the idea of heating the water in the electric tea kettle. I'll have to try that one myself! Thanks for the idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I hand wash. My brand new dishwasher looks like a lonely ol' soul sitting there. Sorry, but I can't justify using all that water and electric. It's much easier to just wash up the few plates, cups and silverwear rather than let them pile up and I can't stand to see a sink full of dishes!

I like the idea of heating the water in the electric tea kettle. I'll have to try that one myself! Thanks for the idea.
me too. i'm single .

it's quicker to wash a pan and a few dishes quickly by hand. the hot water heater heats the water and i fill one side of the sink with soapy water and one side with rinse water.
 

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Tried the electric kettle method tonight! WOW! That was E A S Y! I'll be doing this from now on! Thanks again for the idea! Now to just get that timer on the hot water tank and that should reduce my electric bill a bit.
 

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80 percent of the energy your dishwasher uses goes to heat water. Remember-by saving water, you're also saving the energy, Up to 50 percent of a typical city's energy bill goes to supplying water and cleaning it after use!
 

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we installed a electric hot water tank 2 years ago when gas was going really high doing the winter. So we have cut back on the use of the dish washer to only weekends ,its cheaper,or if we really have to i will set it when i go to bed at midnight.
 

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That does seem like a lot for a dishwasher. Do you have an energy saver cycle.......where it doesn't heat/dry?

I am single so I handwash...and if really lazy hand rinse. I can use the same plate again without the soap being on it...only my germs! :) If and when I do run the dw I make sure it is a full load and only use it about every two to three weeks.

A plumber told me that you SHOULD run it at least once a month so the 'gunk' won't harden in the pipes. Same thing for running water in a sink that you don't use........like a spare bathroom.
 
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