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Items not cleaned properly after being washed in a dishwasher


Residual food is firmly attached to the surface of cookware as seen in the examples shown above.

Please note that this can occur on crockery, pots, pans, utensils, in fact, just about any item.

This is not a problem or fault with your dishwasher when it does not clean properly in this manner

Please see the notes below for guidance on how to avoid this issue.

Usually the result of:

  • Allowing food to become baked or dried onto the surface of the object being washed
  • Dehydration of the food soil
  • Insufficient washing, too short or too cool a program selected
  • Poor quality detergent
  • Items not correctly stacked or placed in the dishwasher
  • Dishwasher spray arm/s obstructed or not clear
  • Connecting the dishwasher to a hot supply

Cause & Prevention


Food which has become baked or dried onto the surface of a pan or casserole dish etc. becomes dehydrated and difficult to remove.

The baking process occurs during cooking whilst the drying-on process occurs between emptying the dish and washing it.

The use of poor detergent in your dishwasher will contribute to this issue as will using programs that are too short or cool, this is especially so in the case of pots, casseroles etc.


Soaking the item in water prior to washing in the dishwasher will help to avoid this with baked on residue. You can soak in a washing up liquid and this will help, but ensure to rinse the item if you do this before placing it in the dishwasher. With stubborn residues or stains it may be necessary to hand wash and use a pan scrub.


The best way to avoid the problem is to prevent the dried on food from becoming dehydrated.

Try not to overcook food.

All items that contain food that can potentially become dried on should be rinsed under the tap or soaked prior to washing in the dishwasher. Or, you can place the item in the dishwasher but immediately perform a rinse and hold program.

When washing heavily soiled items like this it is essential that you use the correct program. For the most part this will be the most severe cycle available, the longest and hottest program along with the use of a quality detergent such as Fairy Active Burst.

Be mindful of the loading pattern for your dishwasher, making sure that the water can reach all the items.

Make sure that the spray arms are clean, clear and free from any obstruction so that they can rotate freely.



  How You Can Get Help With Dishwasher Problems

To offer support in helping people to determine the cause of dishwasher problems please use the dishwasher support forum.

It’s fast, free, easy and normally someone will pick up on the post that can assist you often with a few experts chipping in if needed. Just register if you don’t have an account, we don’t mail you, send you spam or any of that stuff.

Post up your question and give images if you possibly can and the guys in the forums will do the rest for you and try to identify the problem you have.

Cost you nothing, might save you some embarrassment or worse, a charge for a service visit that wasn’t needed.

  Photographs Of Damage

If you can post photographs of the damage or problem you are having this can be really helpful in allowing the dishwasher technicians to see what the problem is.

The guys have the knowledge to assist with most problems but the more information you give them, the better they can help you.

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