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Even though I have a nice dishwasher, I opt to do my dishes by hand. The warm water feels good on my hands (beginnings of arthritis) and I find my dishes are generally cleaner with no water deposits or spots. Also I get to enjoy my antique dishes and don't worry about what the dishwasher might melt or damage.
Whenever I am through with the dishes, if the wash or rinse water is still relatively clean, I use it to clean something else in the house. Sometimes it's a glass lampshade, sometimes it's the floor, sometimes some spots off the doors or walls, sometimes the bathroom sink, or the porch furniture, or the edges of the carpet - you get the picture.
This only takes a few extra minutes, and after you get into this habit your house will remain clean almost all the time. You will find yourself making a mental note when you see something that's dirty and you can clean it next time you're finished with the dishes.
This has made me feel better about my house every day, knowing I'm keeping up with the cleaning. Needless to say, it saves water and soap suds too. The few minutes here and there don't even make an impact in my schedule. Go ahead; give it a try!
What a brilliant idea Jayne - this tip is perfect for me! All my water comes from rainwater tanks so mustn't be used wastefully. I am also in the middle of kitchen renovations and do all my washing up in a small bowl. The dust from the renovating work collects very quickly so I think I'll use my washing up water for a bit of daily damp dusting to at least try and keep on top of it! Your suggestion saves water, cuts down on pollution, (less detergent use), and it encourages that 'little and often' cleaning that is much easier than waiting until everything is very dirty. Its so simple - you are a very smart cookie! Thank you!
I think it has been proven tho that washing dishes by hand uses more energy/money than just running the dishwasher. Reusing the water tho I suppose is a good idea but I'm not sure how cleaning things in other parts of the house with water used for washing dishes is really cleaning....isn't it just putting dirt back on things. Perhaps I didn't understand the post.
I add a little clorox to my dish water (if I am not using a detergent that does not allow clorox mixed in). If the dish water is not dirty after washing the dishes, I too will clean other items in the kitchen. I keep a spray bottle of clorox on the kitchen sink for quick clean-ups.
My husband installed a detergent pump dispenser on my kitchen sink, it is filled with dishwashing detergent; I keep a sponge on the sink; for one glass or dish, I just squirt some dishwashing detergent on the sponge from the detergent dispenser pump and wash, rinse and put in the drain board.