Has anyone noticed that dishwashers now take a really long time to complete their cycle? It's getting rather ridiculous. Our new KitchenAid dishwasher takes like 3+ hours to clean the dishes.
Supposedly, the new technology and dishwasher tablets make it so you don't need to pre-rinse. Just stick your dishes right in dirty. As much as they promise this, it still doesn't work as advertised. There are occasionally food particles remaining on the dishes plus the bottom filter of the dishwasher ends up with food gunk. Seems to me a pre-rinse is still needed. But if I'm doing a pre-rinse, I might as well wash the dishes completely. And if I do that, then what's the purpose of a dishwasher?
My wife had a genius idea. We used to use the dishwasher but then also have an unsightly drying rack on the counter for non-dishwasher safe items like pots, pans, and the blender. She suggested we just ditch the dishwasher function and use the whole thing as a drying rack. It's been working brilliantly. We just wash everything thoroughly like we always did and just stick it all in the dishwasher to dry. Bye bye drying rack.
The new issue is that of course the dishwasher was not intended for this purpose. If you close the dishwasher, now there is no airflow and the dishes don't dry. And there is no simple heat and dry function on the dishwasher. You have to run the full cycle. So for now we just keep the door ajar so air can flow through to dry the dishes.
But this got me thinking about a product idea. Why not make a dishwasher size appliance that serves as a drying rack for the dishes with heat and airflow just for drying? It would save a lot of time, energy, and water compared to a typical dishwasher. This appliance could perhaps even serve multiple purposes. One idea is as a food dehydrator since that too requires heat and airflow. I think something like that would be pretty neat.
The second idea I had is related to water usage. The knock against doing dishes by hand is that it wastes water, which is true. But what if you had a greywater toggle where you could send the water from the sink to a holding tank to be used for your garden? All it takes is using an environmentally friendly dish soap (like castile soap) and cooking with primarily vegan foods. You'd be left with a great water source for the garden and no wasted water.
You see, if we think differently about our daily routines and daily gadgets, we can come up with new and innovative ways to use our time and resources. Try giving this new dishwashing method a try and also let me know what you think about my dishwasher appliance alternative idea and the greywater kitchen sink system.