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How & When to Use Your Dishwasher During Load Shedding to Minimize Impact

In this article, we will explore how and when to use your dishwasher, highlighting its hygienic benefits and explaining how to optimize its operation before load-shedding strikes.

In South Africa, load shedding has become a daily reality that impacts the lives of millions of people. The frequent power outages have forced South Africans to adapt their daily routines and find ways to minimize the impact of power outages on their household chores. However, just because power outages hinder the use of home appliances, it doesn't mean you should give up on your dishwasher. It is, after all, a more convenient and hygienic alternative to washing dishes by hand.

The good news is that there are ways to use your dishwasher efficiently during load shedding to minimize its impact on your daily life. In this article, we will explore how and when to use your dishwasher, highlighting its hygienic benefits and explaining how to optimize its operation before load-shedding strikes.

The Hygienic Benefits of Using a Dishwasher

Before delving into the specifics of using your dishwasher during load shedding, it's crucial to understand the benefits it offers over traditional handwashing. Dishwashers are designed to clean and sanitize your dishes more effectively, killing 99.9% of germs and bacteria.

Here are some reasons why dishwashers are a hygienic choice:

High Temperature

Dishwashers use high-temperature water during their wash cycles, which helps kill 99.9% of germs and bacteria effectively. Handwashing often relies on lukewarm water, which may not be as effective at sanitizing.


Dishwashers maintain a consistent temperature throughout the entire wash cycle, ensuring that all dishes are thoroughly sanitized. Handwashing can sometimes result in variations in water temperature, leading to less effective cleaning.

Detergent Dispensing

These machines are designed to dispense the dishwasher detergent at the right time and in the right amount, ensuring optimal cleaning and sanitizing. Handwashing may not always involve the proper use of detergent.


Using a dishwasher can save you time and effort, making it more likely that you'll wash your dishes promptly. Handwashing can be time-consuming and may lead to dishes sitting dirty for longer periods.

Using Your Dishwasher During Load Shedding

Now that we understand the hygienic benefits of using a dishwasher, let's explore how to use it efficiently during load shedding:

Select Shorter Cycles for Efficiency

Most modern dishwashers offer a range of wash cycle options to suit different needs. During load shedding, opt for shorter cycles like the "Quick Wash" or "Eco" setting. Dishwashers are energy- efficient appliances that use rapid heating to clean dishes effectively. Many offer quick cycles, typically under an hour, for speedy cleaning and convenience. By choosing these options, you'll conserve valuable electricity without compromising on cleanliness.

Focus on Strategic Scheduling

Load-shedding schedules are typically announced in advance, allowing you to plan your activities accordingly. Keep a close eye on the load-shedding timetable in your area and strategically schedule your dishwasher to run just before the power is expected to go out. This ensures that your dishwasher utilizes the available electricity effectively and doesn't sit idle during load shedding.

Optimize Loading for Maximum Efficiency

To make the most of each wash cycle, ensure that your dishwasher is fully loaded before running it. Running full loads is more efficient as it maximizes the use of your dishwasher's capacity and minimizes the number of cycles required. If necessary, collect dirty dishes throughout the day to ensure a full load before starting the dishwasher.

Harness the Delay Start Feature

Many modern dishwashers are equipped with a convenient delay start feature. Take advantage of this function to set your dishwasher to begin its cycle at a time when you expect uninterrupted electricity. This might mean scheduling it to run during off-peak hours or when load shedding is less likely. By using the delay start feature, you can ensure that your dishes are cleaned efficiently without relying on electricity during load shedding.

Prioritize Regular Maintenance

Maintain your dishwasher in good working condition to maximize its efficiency. Use a dishwasher cleaner to regularly clean the filters, check for any blockages, and ensure that the spray arms are free from debris. A well-maintained dishwasher operates more efficiently, saving both energy and water.

Choose Quality Dishwasher Products

The choice of the dishwasher detergent and rinse aid can also impact the efficiency of your dishwasher. Opt for high-quality cleaning products for dishwashers that are designed to work effectively in shorter wash cycles.

These products are formulated to remove tough stains and residues efficiently, even in energy-saving cycles, ensuring your dishes come out clean and sparkling. If you are looking for a reliable brand with an extensive range of dishwasher detergents and cleaning products, Finish can be a smart choice.

Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

If you are in the market for a new dishwasher, consider investing in an energy-efficient model. Look for dishwashers with high Energy Star ratings, which indicate superior energy-saving performance. These appliances not only save on energy costs but also reduce your environmental footprint.


Load shedding has become a significant challenge in South Africa, impacting daily routines and household chores. However, it's essential to recognize that using a dishwasher during load shedding can be a hygienic and efficient choice if done strategically.

Dishwashers offer superior cleaning and sanitizing capabilities compared to handwashing and can be optimized for energy efficiency during power outages. By using shorter cycles, scheduling strategically, optimizing loading, and utilizing the delay start feature, South Africans can minimize the impact of load shedding on their dishwashing routines while still enjoying the benefits of a hygienic clean.

So, don't hesitate to use your dishwasher – it's a valuable ally in maintaining a clean and hygienic home, even in the face of load-shedding challenges.