About dishwasher cycles and programs

Many dishwasher users usually don’t even suspect how necessary it is to pay attention to dishwasher cycles, because there are a lot of different kinds of material dishes are made of and a plenty of ways to remove stains without any harm for dishes.

The easiest way to discover what signs on the dishwasher control panel mean, is to explore the manual attached to your dishwasher. If you have lost it many years ago, like almost every user, there are still lots of PDF copies on the website of a manufacturer. Just search for an instruction of your exact model.

Specific names of cycles and models can be various, but we’re here to talk about most commonly used and popular among many users. Here are settings for housekeepers to try:

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It’s very useful, when you have a load of dirty dishes that you need to have washed as soon as possible; and don’t have special needs. It’s also really effective, when your dishes are normally soiled and have no baked-on or tough pieces of food which can require some additional treatment. There’s no need to brood over about programs, when you choose “Normal”, because it’s the easiest program you can turn “by default” and not care about anything, doing your own business, while a dishwasher does everything.

Smart Wash

This program is called differently, depending on a choice of manufacturers. “Smart”, “Auto”, “Sensor”… It’s not that easy to find a model with that function, but if you’re that lucky, this may really help you out. The deal is that the machine will detect the level of dirtiness and adjust the necessary heat and intensity (and cycle duration) to make your cookware clean.

Heavy wash

That is your safe card, when you have a load of dirty dishes with hard baked-on matter on. This program can be also called the sanitizing one, which might be helpful, when your child or any family member is ill and needs the special treatment.

When it’s very hard to look at them and to imagine how you would do that without a dishwasher. “Heavy wash” program is super-long and it exposes dishes to moist heat for hours, and food will have much time for swelling and falling off… The cycle takes 2 or more hours, the temperature is about 155 C.

High-Temp Wash

It looks very similar to the Normal cycle, but the difference is High-temp one uses extra heat to make the process of drying go faster and also get rid of remaining grease and kill all the malignant bacteria. It usually takes 60, 30 or 120 minutes to finish the washing.

Quick Wash

Like the previous cycle, it also has a plenty of names: “Quick”, “1 Hour”, “Express wash”, and even “Speed 60”. But you must remember, that all of them mean the same. They promise, that your dishes will be clean within an hour. You may need it, when you’re in a hurry, waiting for guests to come or just want to save some more time. How it works? The dishwasher will use extra heat and water to manage to clean up your plates. But if you’re economical, that’s not the right way to conserve on the water supply.

It has no prewashing and drying cycles, that’s why it’s so quick and takes less time for dishes to soak. The only demand is that dishes must be “slightly soiled” and have no baked-on matter or starch. The temperature is usually about 55 C.

Pots and Pans

As you may see from the name of this cycle, this can be useful, if you have a lot of delicate, but thick surfaces to wash out. Especially when you have tough layers of fat, baked-on grime, and all your cookware is heavily soiled. It demands extra water supply to wash out your dishes, but there’s no other way to get rid of dirty stains.


The name is quite self-explanatory. It is used, when you don’t store up dirty dishes, but want to wash it right after your food intake. The food usually is not very soiled, and there are no baked-on hard pieces. The temperature is 30 C, and dishes are washed in 30 minutes.


This program can be also called “Crystal” and is used to work with delicate materials, which are very fragile and easy to harm. The water is a bit cooler, the time of washing is shortened. Specialist, although, recommend washing China and crystal items by hand to keep it safer.

Delay start

You may want to use this program, when you have loaded the dishes, but have no need to have it washed at that particular moment. It would be enough for you just to choose any time for the machine to start. The reasons are innumerable: your children sleep, you want to watch your favourite movie, you have to go right now, or will be busy and have no time to press “Start”.

There are many functions you may be satisfied with, and they may be really helpful. But be careful: for instance, if you choose “Heavy wash” for your china plates, it would be very harmful for them. Or vice versa: don’t turn “Crystal” when you have tough fat food matter stuck. The right choice makes your dishwasher the best helper.

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