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Dishing the dirt on dishwashers

CHOICE tests take the shine off dishwashing powders.

24 October 2016

CHOICE has tested 34 dishwashing detergents and found dishwashing powders fail to clean up when compared to tablets. 

"Many of us rely heavily on our dishwasher so we wanted to know which detergents are the best and unfortunately the powders fail to sparkle," says CHOICE Head of Media Tom Godfrey.  

"Coles Dishwasher Ultra Action Concentrate Powder, Woolworths Select Dishwasher Powder Lemon and Aldi Logix Dishwashing Powder 2X Concentrate are all in our bottom five. 

"Their one redeeming feature is price, with each costing between 7 and 8 cents a wash while the top performers are at least double that, so as a general rule you get what you pay for when it comes to dishwashing detergent. 

"But a special mention goes to Herbon Dishwashing Machine Powder, which not only rates poorly, with a score of just 44, but costs a whopping 55 cents a wash, 38% percent more than our number one detergent: Earth Choice All In 1 Dish Tablets," Mr Godfrey says. 

The CHOICE test pre-soils plates with some common stains that detergents struggle to remove, like red wine, coffee and baked on cheese before running the plates through a dishwasher cycle using each detergent. 

"Rice starch and egg yolk prove particularly tricky for the powders, so it may be worth bearing this in mind when considering what to buy.  

"When it comes to the best performing detergents, dishwashing tablets clean up. All of our top nine are tablets and all score 70 or above with Aldi Logix Dishwashing Tablets 30 Pack Complete 10 In 1 the cheapest, costing just 16 cents a wash."

"Tablets tend to perform better as they appear to have more concentrated active ingredients whereas powders contain more fillers like salt, "says Mr Godrey.

For more information, see the full list of dishwashing detergent reviews.

Media contact: Tom Godfrey, CHOICE, Head of Media and Spokesperson: 0430 172 669

About CHOICE

Set up by consumers for consumers, CHOICE is the consumer advocate that provides Australians with information and advice, free from commercial bias. As vital today as when we were founded in 1959, CHOICE continues to fight for consumers and uncover the truth. By mobilising Australia's largest and loudest consumer movement, CHOICE fights to hold industry and government accountable and achieve real change on the issues that matter most.

Editor's Note 
Testing process: CHOICE uses plates pre-soiled with stains most commonly difficult to remove from a plate. These plates are then loaded into a dishwasher and a program run. Plates are then removed and scanned via a spectrophotometer to get a reflectance value of how much stain is removed.