Greener Dish Washing
|March 25, 2009||Filled under Uncategorized|
How to wash dishes is often a debate in the world of environmentalism. Hand wash or dishwasher? Which soap? Rinse or don’t rinse? Food scraps in trash or garbage disposal? Do non-antibacterial soaps kill germs? Who knew dishes could be such a big subject?! Hopefully this article can help answer these questions.
Hand wash or dishwasher?
Dishwashers are the way to go when trying to be green! A study by the University of Bonn in Germany found that dishwashers use half the energy, one-sixth of the water and less soap. The dishwasher also will kill more germs. Plus your hands will thank you!
Which soap do I use?
For in my dishwasher I use Seventh Generation but not everyone has much luck with it. You will need to try a few most likely to see what works for your type of water and your dishwasher. Other options are- Method, Ecover Tablets, Ecover Powder, Seventh Generation Tablets, Biokleen, ECOS, Shaklee and Eco Store USA.
While Green Works makes a liquid I don’t support them because they won’t tell us what is in that last little bit that isn’t natural. If they will open up about it that would be great but until then I won’t support them. Now if it’s that or a conventional product pick Green Works but you should be able to find at least one other option.
To rinse or not?
If you have a good dishwasher very little rinsing may be needed. With the soap I use and the dishwasher we have, rinsing is a must. To make it less wasteful I always rinse them just once or twice a day in a sink full of hot soapy water. This makes it easier and it uses much less water! Rinsing one dish at a time with the tap running will waste a lot of water and time.
Do I put the food scraps in the trash or garbage disposal?
The best answer is to put them in the composter but if you don’t have one or if it is something that can’t go in the composter, the trash is the best bet. It would take to long to tell you why it is in this blog so go to TreeHugger.com’s article about it.
Do the soaps that aren’t antibacterial kill germs?
100% yes!!! Antibiotics are finding there way in to our bodies in so many ways now! With things like MRSA we really should be starting to see the dangers in over using antibiotics. Also antibacterial soaps are really soaps with something called triclosan which is a pesticide! Yes you heard me. I don’t know about you but I really don’t like eating my organic food on a plate washed with pesticides or after my hands have been “washed” with them. Eww!
Looking for a plastic free way to do dishes?
Well as always Beth Terry (Fake Plastic Fish) has some tips for you. She uses bar soap on a Skoy cloth, scours with baking soda and makes her own dishwasher soap. She also uses vinegar in the rinse cycle.
So how do you wash your dishes?