Sublime Master Trying to help reveals a few secrets for getting good cleaning results in your dishwasher in hard water conditions:
Contrary to popular belief, you do not want too hot of water in hard water conditions. If you use any of the water heating options (Sani, Temp boost, etc.) try turning them off. If you are in a hard water area you can get flash drying. The water will evaporate off the glasses and plates instead of rinsing off leaving behind grit and all the hard water deposits. You want the water to be at least 125 degrees or so to activate the detergent, but that’s about it. Use a good POWDER detergent (Recommended amount I believe is 1 Tb-spoon per grain of hardness, if you are 10 or more, fill the cups) and boost your rinse aid up to Max.
I describe flash drying to people with this scenario. If you had a GORGEOUS black car, would you wash and wax it in the heat of the day in direct sun? When they say no I ask them why and they state it would leave all the those white spots all over it. This is what happens in the DW. Glasses look like they were rinsed in milk, and fine food particles are left behind. To prove you glasses have hard water (can be cleaned) and not etched (live with the white or chuck them) try filling one up with white vinegar half way and let it soak. If when you rinse it the white is gone from the area the vinegar was, it’s hard water. DW’s need 3 things, Mechanical action (Arms, you state they are spinning fine), Thermal (120-125 to activate detergent) and Chemical (Good quality POWDERED detergent matching the amount to the hardness and use rinse-aide.
Also make sure you are not skipping a fill during the cycle, or have the water siphoning out from the drain line not being looped up high enough or the lack of a siphon break if draining through the floor. If you know the filters are clean, and the arms are all clean and the water is there, and the motor turning, it might just be one of the things I listed.
Also, be sure to check out this post on phosphates and dishwashing detergent==> http://fixitnow.com/wp/2010/08/22/coping-with-phosphate-free-dishwashing-detergents/
And this one on handling hard water and mineral buildup problems==> http://fixitnow.com/wp/2010/07/06/handling-hard-water-and-mineral-buildup-in-todays-dishwashers/
Need parts or accessories for your dishwasher? Get ’em here==> http://parts.fixitnow.com
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And don’t forget softening options: either a whole house softener, or purchasing a dishwasher with built-in softener. My Miele dishwasher with built-in softener changed everything!
An excellent point from the voice of experience! 🙂