By Home master

Washing Up- Essential Part of the Cleaning Process

The main thing to bear in mind about all types of domestic cleaning is; the way to stay on top of it is little and often. One of the main ways that ‘little and often’ seems to manifest is in the washing up. Of course, if you’re having a dinner party or a big family dinner then the ‘little’ is somewhat less part of the saying but it you’re preparing and eating your own food then surely it makes sense to wash up your own dirty dishes.

For some reason, there seems to be an element of leave-it-until-there’s-a-really-big-pile when it comes to washing up and this is absolutely non sensical. It is so quick and convenient to just get it done as you’re cooking and then do the plates and stuff as soon as you finish. For one thing, the dirt shifts much faster if it hasn’t been there as long – though evidently it might be worth leaving the cooking pans etc. to cool while you eat your meal and then you can happily wash everything in one simple lot at the end of your meal.

An argument against this might be the very conscientious and environmentally minded water wastage or washing liquid wastage arguments. Why do a full load – so to speak – when there isn’t enough to fill a sink?

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Washing Up
By M.Minderhoud (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Well, in answer to this, there is a cleaning technique NW11 you can use. It involves squirting a small amount of the washing up liquid onto the sponge and then wetting your crockery under a running tap of hot water and then cleaning and wiping the surface with the sponge which, on contact with the water on the crockery will multiply the washing up liquid, almost magically, to proportions which allow you to do the whole load. It makes perfect sense to use this method really. Otherwise it would be like washing your teeth with a whole sink full of water – where’s the logic there?

For the washing up that has been left to grow colonies of mould or just has some really stubborn food refusing to leave there are a number of things you can do but mainly I would advise a little washing up liquid to try and shift that grease and hot water to make the liquid bubble and then leave it for at least a night to see if it’s easier to shift the next time you try. If this still doesn’t work then it’s just a case of leaving it a bit longer with more washing up liquid and warmer water.

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Whatever you do, don’t use another form of washing product that isn’t designed for washing up. Obviously it isn’t advisable to eat washing up liquid but I somehow feel it’s even less advisable to eat bleach or some kind of ‘I kill all bacteria ever’ equivalent. The most important thing to remember is that the body is full of bacteria but it’s good bacteria and it’s there to serve a purpose. Killing it off by ingesting cleaning products will make you ill and probably give some form of complicated stomach ulcer.


Washing up conclusion

This leads me neatly to my final point; always rinse thoroughly. You can’t just soap your cutlery and then put it straight on the drying rack to gently let the suds slip off it because some of them will not and they may dry to the plates and stay there. No one wants to eat washing up liquid.