Dishwashing vs. Hand Washing: What Saves More Water?

When it comes to washing dishes by hand in the kitchen sink or using a dishwasher, there are many misconceptions. For instance, people are naturally disinclined to run a half load of dishes; doesn’t that waste water? If a machine is more efficient, do dishwashers save money reliably in the long run? The answer between dishwashing vs. hand washing isn’t entirely clear-cut, but using the machines is generally the more eco-friendly choice.

Dishwashing vs. Hand Washing

In theory, dishwashing is far more efficient than handwashing. Of course, it shouldn’t be surprising that a specially designed machine can clean dishes more effectively than a person. Especially given that when someone is washing dishes by hand, they’re probably absentmindedly listening to music and wishing to be done with the chore.

What’s surprising is just how big the gulf is between dishwashing vs. hand washing. Even an old, outdated dishwasher that only works if you’re rinsing your dishes first is going to use about 10 gallons of water. On the other hand, washing a full load of dishes by hand typically takes about 20 gallons of water. When you compare handwashing to a modern dishwasher, the disparity grows dramatically.

Modern Dishwashers vs. Hand Washing

Dishwashers have come a long way in recent decades. Today, the best machines use as little as three gallons of water to clean a full load of dishes. If you wash a full load of dishes by hand, you’ll be using nearly seven times as much water, and they’ll likely be less clean. This is because today’s dishwashers utilize higher pressure and smarter internal layouts to get the job done while economizing on water. Don’t wait any longer to buy a new dishwasher if you’re ready for an upgrade.

Average Dishwasher

The typical dishwasher might use six or seven gallons of water on a full load. While this is much more than the most eco-friendly dishwasher, it’s still far more efficient than handwashing. The only way that it would actually save water to wash by hand would be if you’re contemplating running a quarter-load of dishes.

When Should I Run the Dishwasher?

No one likes running a load of dishes on anything less than a full load. It feels lazy and wasteful, but the fact is that there’s rarely anything more wasteful than washing dishes by hand. Between dishwashing vs. handwashing, there’s no contest.

If you need a couple of plates and silverware right now, then go ahead and wash them by hand. Otherwise, you should use your dishwasher. Running it when it’s as full as practical is a good idea,

Do Dishwashers Save Money?

Do dishwashers save money? Yes, and in more ways than one. While reducing your water bill is one benefit, a good dishwasher saves you money in other ways. For instance, the fact that they use hot water more efficiently means that you also spend less on electricity. This doesn’t just translate into saving money but also helps the environment while giving you more time to rest and relax.

The next time you’re agonizing over handwashing vs. dishwashing, you know what to do. Dishwashers save money, water, electricity, time, and the environment. But when you need to help your dishwasher so it can keep helping you, the Appliance Doctors can help. Get in touch with us whenever you need dishwasher repair, maintenance, and replacement services.