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Cheap generic brand dishwasher tablets v.s. Premium Name brand

  • Last Updated:
  • Sep 14th, 2021 9:32 pm
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
23610 posts
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Eastern Ontario
UrbanPoet wrote: Oh thats not a lot. I do 1-2 times per week.
But I do have a 18 inch condo/apt sized dish washer.
Ya I don’t understand how some folks run their DWs so little
Either they don’t cook at home much
Or they are doing a lot of hand washing

I bought a DW to do the work I don’t want to
AKA … what it was designed to do (wash it all)

So I have free time to do other things

Even with just 2 of us … it gets run once a day … after Dinner usually

Have company over, or a big meal (Thanksgiving etc) it gets run even more
Deal Fanatic
Mar 21, 2010
6591 posts
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Toronto
PointsHubby wrote: Ya I don’t understand how some folks run their DWs so little
Either they don’t cook at home much
Or they are doing a lot of hand washing

I bought a DW to do the work I don’t want to
AKA … what it was designed to do (wash it all)

So I have free time to do other things

Even with just 2 of us … it gets run once a day … after Dinner usually

Have company over, or a big meal (Thanksgiving etc) it gets run even more
Do you put everything in there, including pots and pans etc.?

I've never had a dishwasher that cleans pots and pans properly - well, it cleans them fine, but it leaves a chalky residue on stainless pots, so they don't have the shine. I do those (stainless and non-stick, because I'm concerned about the coating) by hand together with kitchen knives. Dishwasher gets the plates, bowls, mugs, pyrex and other storage containers, cutlery etc.
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
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Eastern Ontario
Manatus wrote: Do you put everything in there, including pots and pans etc.?

I've never had a dishwasher that cleans pots and pans properly - well, it cleans them fine, but it leaves a chalky residue on stainless pots, so they don't have the shine. I do that by hand together with kitchen knives. Dishwasher gets the plates, bowls, mugs, pyrex and other storage containers, cutlery etc.
Ya stainless is tricky cuz it can discolour due to high heat or dishwashing

But ya it’s just cosmetic … so in it goes

Using Finish Pots & Pans come out clean the first time … rare to actually need to scrub or rewash anything
This includes the toughies like Scalloped Potatoes, Lasagna, or Chili

Knives … lol it depends on the knife quality. Only have a few super good ones I do by hand.
Most are just middle of the road, and ya, I throw them in the DW too.
Although on an upper rack, not in the cutlery basket
Deal Fanatic
Jul 7, 2017
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SW corner of the cou…
UrbanPoet wrote: Oh thats not a lot. I do 1-2 times per week.
But I do have a 18 inch condo/apt sized dish washer.
That's a problem. Arm doesn't reach the front and back of the DW too good because it is deeper than it is wide.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
23610 posts
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Eastern Ontario
thriftshopper wrote: That's a problem. Arm doesn't reach the front and back of the DW too good because it is deeper than it is wide.
Must depend on the model
One in a condo we use often … presents no problems getting stuff clean

Think it’s like any other DW
Some makes are going to be better than others

The 18 inch category has grown in recent years
Now everyone seems to make one
(GE - Whirlpool - Frigidaire - Samsung - Bosch etc )

And like everything else with DWs the technology can differ by model or manufacturer
Deal Fanatic
Jul 7, 2017
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SW corner of the cou…
PointsHubby wrote: Must depend on the model
One in a condo we use often … presents no problems getting stuff clean

Think it’s like any other DW
Some makes are going to be better than others

The 18 inch category has grown in recent years
Now everyone seems to make one
(GE - Whirlpool - Frigidaire - Samsung - Bosch etc )

And like everything else with DWs the technology can differ by model or manufacturer
Used to be a limited selection. Either a GE (rebranded Danby) or Frigidaire. But by comparison, a DW cavity is 24" x 24" so the cross section as seen above is roughly square. A 18"W is 18" x 24" so the arms aren't going to reach the front and back too well if they are simple rotary.

I guess you could make an arm that moves back and forth like a car wash, or one that is syncronised to extend into corner and length of the DW, retracting along the width, similar idea to this:

Image
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
[OP]
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Jan 27, 2004
50574 posts
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ONTARIO
thriftshopper wrote:
That's a problem. Arm doesn't reach the front and back of the DW too good because it is deeper than it is wide.
PointsHubby wrote: Must depend on the model
One in a condo we use often … presents no problems getting stuff clean

Think it’s like any other DW
Some makes are going to be better than others

The 18 inch category has grown in recent years
Now everyone seems to make one
(GE - Whirlpool - Frigidaire - Samsung - Bosch etc )

And like everything else with DWs the technology can differ by model or manufacturer
Mine doesn’t have any problems cleaning. And its a cheapo used danby 18 inch portable dishwasher. Cheapest portable on the market.
Even when full.

However I only ever used the name brand cascade tablets. Even went down to the lower tier cascade lemon & still no problems. But now it seems like its okay to use cheap loose dishwasher powder if i just fill the both compartments.
[OP]
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Jan 27, 2004
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l69norm wrote: Cheap detergent + fill both cups. Also depends on how hard your water is (harder = more detergent)

Because of this video… i bought the cheapest $4.29 for 1.79KG dishwasher detergent. decent size box!

It works extremely well when both sides of the detergent compartment are filled. Not as classy using powder. But way cheaper and better cleaning power than tabs!

Updated OP with pics
Deal Addict
Feb 22, 2013
1369 posts
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Gee wrote: Don’t get me wrong, I would totally buy another Miele. I am sure you can use Finish or Cascade tabs in the Miele. It just works a lot better with their own tabs. The detergent is a lot milder and doesn’t scratch the dishes. I have a water softener, a little detergent goes a long way.

The Bosch I had was the middle of the pack and it did a decent job cleaning dishes. The Miele does an awesome job and it is so quiet, the only way you know it is running is by touching the door and feeling the heat. The Bosch was quiet, but I know when it is running.

The Miele is assembled by hand and has a lot less electronics than most modern dish washers.

What cemented my decision to buy a Miele was its reputation, but more importantly, my dental hygienist uses an industrial version to sterilize dental instruments.

It wasn’t cheap. I paid ~800$ for the Bosch, the Miele cost 2300$ (After discount), but now I realize that 300$ of that was just in dish tabs

10 year warranty included with registration. My next dishwasher will definitely be another Miele.
Just wondering if you recall when you purchased your Miele dishwasher? Is this an annual promo? I noticed that they have a 10-year warranty promo but it excludes dishwashers.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
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sparkaction wrote: Just wondering if you recall when you purchased your Miele dishwasher? Is this an annual promo? I noticed that they have a 10-year warranty promo but it excludes dishwashers.
I purchased in the summer 2016 from Tasco.

Not sure if it is an annual promo. Other than a vacuum, this is the only Miele product I own
Deal Addict
Nov 12, 2006
2791 posts
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London
UrbanPoet wrote: I did a test! I bought the cheapest bargain brand dishwasher detergent powder.
Filled up both sides of the detergent holder.
That's what we use, and it works.
I think it may depend on the washer though.
Ours is older and I believe the wash cycles of newer machines may require something different.
PointsHubby wrote: Ya I don’t understand how some folks run their DWs so little
Either they don’t cook at home much
Or they are doing a lot of hand washing
Same here.
I was surprised to see things like once/week.
We may go 2 days, but seldom longer.
Large pots often get hand washed.
Deal Addict
Nov 12, 2006
2791 posts
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London
PointsHubby wrote: I buy all my DW Detergent at Costco … esp Finish products, as I find they have the best price bar none.

Example … Finish Quantum Powerballs … currently on SALE @ $ 15.99 (regularly $ 22.99 )
That’s when I stock up
Works out to $ 15.99 for 100 tablets … which = $ 0.159 each

Hard to beat that price anywhere … if even possible !
UrbanPoet wrote: Because of this video… i bought the cheapest $4.29 for 1.79KG dishwasher detergent. decent size box!

It works extremely well when both sides of the detergent compartment are filled. Not as classy using powder. But way cheaper and better cleaning power than tabs!
Curiosity got the better of me.
Using our method, which is same as OP's, it costs 11.6 cents/wash

If there is the slightest advantage to Powerballs, 4 cents is insignificant.
Each person can decide if there is.
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Apr 19, 2006
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Throw in a scoop of Borax into the washer if your detergent isn't working as well as you like.
Member
May 1, 2007
404 posts
192 upvotes
Toronto
Hambone wrote: Throw in a scoop of Borax into the washer if your detergent isn't working as well as you like.
This is also a great way to clean your dishwasher every few months. 1 cup of borax into the empty dishwasher on the scrub cycle.

Do not use vinegar - it will destroy the rubber seals/gaskets.
Deal Fanatic
Mar 21, 2002
6696 posts
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JWL wrote: Look for the cheapest detergent you can find WITH ENZYMES. Consumer Reports' recommendation, not mine. Enzymes are the key to great dishwashing results.
Walmart's brand used to have enzymes (not sure if it still does). Kirkland brand at Costco does.
Many years ago I bought a box of Walmart brand powdered dish detergent. I was surprised - it worked great! The box indicated it had enzymes. Fast forward to years later. I happened to buy another box. It was terrible, almost unusable. In looking over the box to see what had changed I noticed no mention of enzymes. The price was still about the same but they had taken the enzymes out. Learned from that experience and stayed away from Walmart after that.
Sr. Member
Dec 4, 2013
812 posts
419 upvotes
Mississauga
UrbanPoet wrote: Do premium name brand dishwasher tablets actually work better than generic tablets?

The Cascade platinum claims to wash dishes better. Even full loads on quick cycles.

But the generic walmart/generic store brand tablets are half the price.

Right now i’m just using the lower tier cascade lemon scent tablets… $22 for 110

Updated!

I did a test! I bought the cheapest bargain brand dishwasher detergent powder.
Filled up both sides of the detergent holder.
It washed a full load sparkling clean! Even with my tetris dish stacking technique, it still washes thoroughly. As long as you fill up both sides of the detergent holder.
You technically use more detergent. But this stuff is only $4.29 for 1.79KG
Cascade Lemon (cheapest name brand) is $22 for 110 tablets 1.7kg
Does the box says that it has enzymes in it?
[OP]
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Jan 27, 2004
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cricketfan wrote: Does the box says that it has enzymes in it?
I didn’t look. I’ll check later and update.
Dunno if it’ll be that fancy. Its $4 bucks and the box is kinda heavy. Good value even if i’m using double the weight, i’m saving over 50%!

Edit : no mention of enzymes…
Last edited by UrbanPoet on Sep 14th, 2021 6:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
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Eastern Ontario
UrbanPoet wrote: Lol. How the heck do you scoop a character actor into a dishwasher?
Funny movies though.
Lol … comment good for a laugh
But, BoraT and BoraX
2 very different things

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