Good news for every lazy motherfucker out there: Turns out that washing your dishes by hand is not only useless but it’s also a complete and utter waste of water. You need to stop doing it immediately, regardless of whether you have a dishwasher or not. Time to buy one or invest in paper plates.
The Washington Post (which is now absolutely my favorite news outlet) has just dropped the bombshell that neither hand-washing your dishes completely nor rinsing them before putting them into the water actually does anything good for you or the dishes. And while it might save your relationship—if, your partner, like mine, demands that you do at least one job around the house—to put in an effort and cut your hands open when you was a knife manually, it certainly won’t save the environment for future generations.
Here’s what an expert has to say about how useless hand-washing is:
“While it may be possible to use less water/energy by washing dishes by hand, it is extremely unlikely,” Jonah Schein, technical coordinator for homes and buildings in the EPA’s WaterSense program, said in a statement. Schein was referring, in particular, to Energy Star-certified dishwashers, not all dishwashers.
“In order to wash the same amount of dishes that can fit in a single load of a full size dishwasher and use less water, you would need to be able to wash eight full place settings and still limit the total amount of time that the faucet was running to less than two minutes,” he said.
In addition to the fact that newer models of dishwashers are more energy and water-efficient (many now dry dishes without heat, too), it’s hard to beat them on a practical level. While old dishwashers won’t get your dishes as clean as you’d like, your hands can’t compete with the high water temperatures that the newer models can put out while using less of our precious resources. In fact, according to experts, you’d need to wash your dishes in water that’s heated to 145 degrees to actually make a difference, which will also burn your hands into something resembling Freddy Krueger’s face. Are hand-washed dishes really that important to you?
The Post reports that in order to get your dishes even close to what the dishwasher can do with your worthless fingers, you’d have to plug up the drain and then soak and scrub everything in a tiny amount of water. Which is exactly the opposite of what many of us (especially me) do.
If you’ve been looking for a reason to buy a dishwasher, this might be the time to get one. I currently don’t have this luxury because I’ve been told “it’s too much electricity and you need to stop being lazy,” but it looks like someone’s going shopping for appliances this weekend. Join me in this fight to keep the earth safe.
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