7 Things You Didn’t Know Your Dishwasher Could Do (Slideshow)

Contributor
This appliance can be used for so much more than just cleaning dirty dishes
toothbrush

7 Things You Didn’t Know Your Dishwasher Could Do

dishwasher

Thinkstock

If you’re anything like me, you still remember the first apartment you rented that came with a dishwasher; after years of washing dishes by hand in the sink, the feeling of kicking your feet up and relaxing after dinner while the dishwasher did all the cleanup was pure magic. But chances are good that over the years you’ve started to take your dishwasher for granted. You load it up with dirty dishes, hit the wash button, and walk away; you’ve forgotten how amazing this appliance really is. Prepare to be amazed again, because your dishwasher can do a whole lot more than clean plates.

Sanitize Your Toothbrush

toothbrush

Thinkstock

It’s good to clean your toothbrush from time to time, especially if you’ve just gotten over a cold. Tossing it in the dishwasher makes the task super easy

Shine Your Hubcaps

hubcap

Thinstock

You read that correctly; you can shine your hubcaps in the dishwasher. Simply load the hubcaps into your dishwasher with a cup of white vinegar (if you’re also cleaning the lug nuts, place them in a mesh bag before loading them into the dishwasher) and they’ll come out squeaky clean.

Clean Canvas Sneakers

sneakers

Thinkstock

Tired of hearing your Converse sneakers clunk around in the washing machine? Put them in the dishwasher instead. Just remove the liners before you wash them and skip the dry cycle (let the sneakers air-dry). After you’re done washing your sneakers, run the dishwasher without anything in it to clean it.

Cook Vegetables

veggies

Thinkstock

This trick comes in handy around the holidays when you’re more likely to be cooking for a large group and maxing out the space in your oven. Try cooking vegetables like broccoli or carrots in foil packets or steaming foil-wrapped potatoes or yams.

Poach Salmon

fish

Thinkstock

And, while you’re at it, why not throw some fish in the dishwasher too? That way you can make a complete meal. Just be sure, as with the vegetables, that the fish is wrapped tightly in foil.

Sanitize Dish Sponges and Towels

sponges

Thinkstock

Everyone knows that dish sponges and towels can harbor tons of bad bacteria; kill the germs by tossing these items into the dishwasher and setting it for a high-temperature, sanitizing cycle. 

Clean Sports Gear

sports gear

Thinsktock

Anything that doesn’t fit well in the washing machine and that can withstand high temperatures could be a good candidate for a spin in the dishwasher. Sports gear like knee pads, shin guards, and mouth guards all fall into this category.