Different Cleaning Agents to Use in Your Dishwasher

Dishwashers make kitchen chores a whole lot easier. But when it comes to all the different kinds of detergent to use with your dishwasher, the choices can be overwhelming. All dishwasher detergents have mostly the same ingredients, just different formulas. Here’s a closer look at all your options, and the pros and cons of each.

Powder Detergent

The one ingredient that powder detergent contains that gel does not is bleach. This makes for sparkling white dishes, yet it sometimes isn’t able to get starchy stains, like potato or flour, off of larger dishes like a casserole dish or a large mixing bowl. Since powder does contain bleach, it’s the best at getting rid of musty and unpleasant odors that can sometimes occur in a dishwasher that hasn’t been run in a few days. If you have hard water in your home, powder detergent will clean much better than gels and pods.

Gel Detergent

Gel detergents seem to have a slight edge on powder in the popularity department, probably because it resembles liquid dish soap, which we all know has strong dish cleaning power. Gels contain enzymes instead of bleach. Enzymes can wipe out those tough filmy stains on dishes that rich, starchy foods leave behind.


Pods are quickly becoming the most purchased dishwasher detergent. These small convenient packs cut out the need to measure out portions and contain just the right amount of detergent for the job. They also can contain both powder and gel, which give the consumer peace of mind that they’re getting the best cleaning experience and the best of both worlds.

No matter which detergent you choose for your dishwasher, you can be sure it’s formulated to clean and sanitize your dishes properly. If you’re having any issues with your dishwasher not washing correctly, it could be a problem with your machine. Call Express Appliance Service for an appointment right away.