This Is The Right Way to Load Your Dishwasher

iStock
iStock

Modern dishwashers are marvels of appliance engineering. They use scalding water to kill bacteria, potent jets to scour food remnants, and enough insulation to keep the whole operation from emitting airport-like levels of noise pollution. Unfortunately, no dishwasher has been invented that can overcome improper loading of the interior. And contrary to popular belief, cramming everything you can into the racks isn’t ideal. Consumer Reports looked at the right—and wrong—way to fill up the appliance, and their tips can almost guarantee spotlessly clean dishes.

If you have an older dishwasher, you’ll want to pre-rinse to eliminate larger food chunks. (Modern models generally don’t require this step.) You’re probably already placing cups and glassware on the top rack, but be careful not to overcrowd it with too many items. In addition to increasing the risk of breakage, an overstuffed rack doesn’t allow water and detergent to circulate easily.

Bowls typically go on top, but not all of them should face the same direction. Put bowls in the back facing forward and put the ones in front facing backward. That allows for better water penetration. (Plates on the lower rack can all face the same way.) If you’re washing plastic containers, keep those on the top, too: the heating element under the bottom rack could warp them.

iStock

For silverware, you always want to have the business end of your forks and spoons facing up. Knives, however, should be loaded facing down so you don’t risk cutting yourself when pulling them out. And be sure to mix up your utensils, since having all spoons or all forks in the same compartment can lead to “nesting,” where they collapse together. That prevents some surfaces from getting clean. Spatulas and other long-handled tools should be placed horizontally so they don’t slip through the rack and block the spray arm from turning.

Larger items go on the bottom rack—which you’ve probably figured out yourself—but be careful not to put items with flat surfaces like cutting boards in the middle. Those should go on the sides so they don’t block the water spray.

Avoid putting in anything made of brass, bronze, wood, or larger kitchen knives, which can be damaged by high heat and harsh detergents. You’ll also want to run your hot water in the sink so the dishwasher cycle starts at a higher temperature. And don’t forget that many dishwashers have an adjustable upper rack to accommodate taller items on the bottom.

[h/t Consumer Reports]

Amazon’s Big Fall Sale Features Deals on Electronics, Kitchen Appliances, and Home Décor

Dash/Keurig
Dash/Keurig

If you're looking for deals on items like Keurigs, BISSELL vacuums, and essential oil diffusers, it's usually pretty slim pickings until the holiday sales roll around. Thankfully, Amazon is starting these deals a little earlier with their Big Fall Sale, where customers can get up to 20 percent off everything from home decor to WFH essentials and kitchen gadgets. Now you won’t have to wait until Black Friday for the deal you need. Make sure to see all the deals that the sale has to offer here and check out our favorites below.

Electronics

Dash/Amazon

- BISSELL Lightweight Upright Vacuum Cleaner $170 (save $60)

- Dash Deluxe Air Fryer $80 (save $20)

- Dash Rapid 6-Egg Cooker $17 (save $3)

- Keurig K-Café Single Coffee Maker $169 (save $30)

- COMFEE Toaster Oven $29 (save $9)

- AmazonBasics 1500W Oscillating Ceramic Heater $31 (save $4)

Home office Essentials

HP/Amazon

- HP Neverstop Laser Printer $250 (save $30)

- HP ScanJet Pro 2500 f1 Flatbed OCR Scanner $274 (save $25)

- HP Printer Paper (500 Sheets) $5 (save $2)

- Mead Composition Books Pack of 5 Ruled Notebooks $11 (save $2)

- Swingline Desktop Hole Punch $7 (save $17)

- Officemate OIC Achieva Side Load Letter Tray $15 (save $7)

- PILOT G2 Premium Rolling Ball Gel Pens 12-Pack $10 (save $3)

Toys and games

Selieve/Amazon

- Selieve Toys Old Children's Walkie Talkies $17 (save $7)

- Yard Games Giant Tumbling Timbers $59 (save $21)

- Duckura Jump Rocket Launchers $11 (save $17)

- EXERCISE N PLAY Automatic Launcher Baseball Bat $14 (save $29)

- Holy Stone HS165 GPS Drones with 2K HD Camera $95 (save $40)

Home Improvement

DEWALT/Amazon

- DEWALT 20V MAX LED Hand Held Work Light $54 (save $65)

- Duck EZ Packing Tape with Dispenser, 6 Rolls $11 (save $6)

- Bissell MultiClean Wet/Dry Garage Auto Vacuum $111 (save $39)

- Full Circle Sinksational Sink Strainer with Stopper $5 (save $2)

Home Décor

NECA/Amazon

- A Christmas Story 20-Inch Leg Lamp Prop Replica by NECA $41 save $5

- SYLVANIA 100 LED Warm White Mini Lights $8 (save 2)

- Yankee Candle Large Jar Candle Vanilla Cupcake $17 (save $12)

- Malden 8-Opening Matted Collage Picture Frame $20 (save $8)

- Lush Decor Blue and Gray Flower Curtains Pair $57 (save $55)

- LEVOIT Essential Oil Diffuser $25 (save $5)

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Want to Fall Asleep Faster? Try This Breathing Technique

Andrea Piacquadio, Pexels
Andrea Piacquadio, Pexels

Struggling to fall asleep can feel like a hopeless battle. It often seems like the harder you try turning your brain off, the less likely it is to happen. One way to trick yourself into falling asleep fast is finding something to concentrate on other than how long you've been awake. For nights when your thoughts just won't stay quiet, try the 4-7-8 technique.

According to Simplemost, the 4-7-8 breathing method is meant to combat anxiety, restlessness, and other enemies of a good night's sleep. The actual technique is simple: Just inhale for four seconds, hold your breath for seven seconds, and exhale for eight seconds. Like counting sheep, measuring out your breaths gives your brain something to do that isn't obsessing about your hectic day or the day ahead.

Taking slow, deliberate breaths has also been proven to reduce stress. Neurons that influence calmness have been found in the breathing control centers of mouse brains. In humans, deep breathing has long been central to mindfulness practices like yoga and meditation. The 4-7-8 breathing technique functions as both a distraction from your thoughts and a way to combat any anxious sensations that may be keeping you awake.

The next time you find yourself tossing and turning at night, try anywhere between three and eight rounds of this breathing technique to calm your body and mind. And to get the best rest possible, make sure you're settling into the best sleep position for your health.

[h/t Simplemost]