How to Choose, Load, and Run Dishwasher Pods in Small Dishwashers

Choosing and using a random dishwasher pod may sound easy. But when it comes to optimal cleaning performance and quality, you need to think at least twice. Cleaning pods come with different ingredients and prices. Some of them even have particular uses which you have to choose carefully. If your goal is to extract the best cleaning result without harming dishes and the dishwashing machine, look no further.

In this article, we will cover the ways to pick the best pods for your small dishwasher. Also, we will discuss the proper way to load and run a cleaning cycle. As a bonus, you will get some expert tips to maximize the dish cleaning result.

Read and explore.

Factors To Consider When Choosing Dishwasher Pods

Factors To Consider When Choosing Dishwasher Pods

When purchasing pods for a small dishwasher, keep the following checklist in mind to pick the best possible option.

1. Compatibility with your dishwasher

Compatibility with your dishwasher

The dishwasher and cleaning pods must be compatible for the best performance. Like pods, dishwashers also have different working procedures. Some models may not produce the required heat to liquefy certain dishwasher pods. As a result, the cleaning will not be satisfactory. So, check your dishwasher’s user manual first to understand its specific detergent requirement.

2. Cleaning power

Due to differences in formulation, dishwasher pods from different brands have unique cleaning capabilities. Some pods can be very effective in removing tough stains and grease; others may not. Therefore, choose the pod depending on its cleaning power and the dirt level on the dishes.

3. Water hardness

If you expect the best cleaning outcome from a dishwasher pod, consider the water hardness in your area. For example, if you live somewhere with hard water, choose dishwashing pods particularly designed for that type of water. Hard water has a higher presence of mineral content, which can build up on dishes. If you choose average pods, it may not be effective to remove them.

4. Scent and fragrance

What is dishwasher freshener

Scented and fragrance-free, both types of dishwasher pods are available in the market. It is up to you which one you prefer. Do you have an aroma sensitivity? Then fragrance-free pods are the most suitable option for you. Some users also dislike the remaining scent on dishes after cleaning. That’s why notice the packaging during buying whether it is fragrance-free or not. 

5. Price and value 

The price range of dishwashing pods varies a lot. You must compare the price and effectiveness of a pod to discover a suitable one. It is the way to get the best value for the money. In general, high-priced dishwasher pods have better cleaning capability. They are also compatible with hard water and give you the maximum cleaning result. 

How To Load the Dishwasher And Run The Cleaning Cycle

How To Load the Dishwasher And Run The Cleaning Cycle

After selecting appropriate dishwasher pods, the next step is to load the dishwashing machine and run the cleaning cycle. Here is the step-by-step guide on how to do it.

Step 1: Check the loading instructions for your dishwasher model. The user manual generally mentions which type of bowls and plates should go where. For instance, glass-made items should be placed on the upper rack. Follow such precise instructions to avoid their damage.

Step 2: To place the dishwasher pod, the machine must have a specific spot. In general, it is inside the dishwasher door. Find and ensure the place.

Step 3: When you have located the pod placement section, put a cleaning pod into it. Based on the load size, you can use 1 or 2 dishwasher pods for a cleaning cycle. After inserting the pod, close the machine’s door securely. You should hear a click sound when it is perfectly closed. 

Step 4: Choose your required wash cycle from the dishwasher’s control panel. You can also choose additional options during the selection, like heated dry, sanitized setting, etc.

Step 5: Finally, press the “Start” button to run the dishwashing cycle. The dishwasher will clean the items inside automatically. The washing cycle will continue until they are clean and dry.

Tips And Tricks To Maximize The Performance of Dishwasher Pods

Tips And Tricks To Maximize The Performance of Dishwasher Pods

If you want to extract the best performance from the dishwasher pods, you need to follow some expert tricks. Check the below tips for getting outstanding performance from dishwasher pods.

1. Be smart while loading:

Never overload the dishwasher with kitchen utensils. This simple caution will let the cleaning solution reach all areas and clean effectively. Besides, keep the dirtiest surfaces of the dishes downward. Make sure they are in the direction of the wash arms. Avoid loading items upside down or sideways. 

2. Set a stronger cycle:

Selecting a powerful cleaning cycle is a great trick a few people know. You can choose the “auto/sensor” or “heavy/pots and pans” cleaning cycle instead of “normal.” This technique will force the machine to clean dishes faster. The cleaning result will also be more satisfactory. 

3. Avoid pre-rinsing:

A dishwashing machine is designed to rinse dishes automatically. So, there is no need to pre-rinse bowls, plates, and others by hand. This practice can reduce the dishwasher pods’ cleaning effectiveness. You can remove large food particles manually and load those dirty dishes into the machine, nothing else.

4. Keep the rinse aid reservoir full:

Rinse aid liquids help spread water evenly over the dishes. They prevent spots and assist in better drying. Therefore, ensure that the rinse aid reservoir is full of the liquid. Rinse aid dispensers from any brand will do the job.

5. Clean dishwasher routinely:

Mineral deposits are the common enemies of dishwashers. They cause clogging and reduce the pods’ cleaning efficiency. The only way to avoid mineral deposits forming is to clean your dishwasher routinely.

Frequently Asked Questions

#Are dishwasher pods good or bad for the environment?

Unfortunately, most dishwasher pods are hazardous to the environment. They are made of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) that causes pollution in nature. Very few brands manufacture eco-friendly pods containing non-toxic and harmless ingredients.

#Should people with allergies use dishwasher pods?

Dishwasher pods can create allergic reactions in some people. The fragrance used in those pods can be irritating to sensitive users. For those users, fragrance-free dishwasher pods are recommended. 

#What can happen if you place the dishwasher pod in the wrong place?

If it is placed wrongly, you can suffer from various issues like residue buildup in the dishwasher, problems with dissolving, and the pod getting stuck.

#Are dishwasher pods effective against germs?

Most pods can kill germs effectively. However, they work fine when the water temperature is above 140°F.


Finally, we discovered some essential considerations while choosing and using dishwasher pods. Picking the right dishwasher pod not only saves you money. It provides the outstanding cleaning performance you expect. 

Unfortunately, many users still do not get the expected results despite having high-quality dishwasher pods. It occurs primarily due to improper loading techniques. To ensure the maximum effectiveness of pods, follow the mentioned procedure. Simple changes during the cleaning process can make a big difference. The above tips and tricks will help you maximize the cleaning performance of your small dishwasher. 

About Travis K. Foster

Hi, this is Travis K. Foster speaking, a passionate and expert cook. This blog is to introduce you to the best kitchen gadgets. Here I inform you how I find out the best tools for my kitchen. And I review all products after good research to help you to get the best options with more kitchen tips. Stay on, Have fun! Learn more...

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