Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Should the Good China go in the Dishwasher?


By Reena Nerbas

Is China Dishwasher Safe?

Hi there Reena,

We have rediscovered a relative’s chinaware from the 50’s. The style is quite amazing for that period of time. However there is no mention as to whether or not it is dishwasher safe. I’m thinking it isn’t just because of its age and the lack of automatic home dishwashers at that time. So the question is what is the difference between being dishwasher safe and not being dishwasher safe? What happens if we wash the dishes in the dishwasher?  Would it matter if we turned off the heated dry cycle? Your comments would be appreciated. David

Dear David,

This is one of those long standing debates where china owners differ. Some experts claim they can actually tell the difference between china washed in the dishwasher several times, versus hand washed china. Hand washing is the safest method for cleaning china unless your dishwasher happens to offer a button specifically designed for fine china. Harsh detergents containing bleach along with high water temperature can play a big part in damaging china, specifically hand painted china or weakened china containing small cracks. Dishes with gold accents may become damaged from high water temperature or water force. If you choose to place dishes in the dishwasher, select cold water, mild dishwasher detergent and air dry.

Home Spa

Dear Reena,

My mom is turning 72 this week and I am trying to make a home spa for her birthday. Can you give me an idea for a cheap homemade face mask treatment? Vera

Dear Vera,

Nice idea! Combine 1 tbsp. regular plain yogurt with 1 tsp. soft honey. Apply to face and leave for 7 mins. Pat and rinse with a clean, hot washcloth.

Restoring Silk Flowers

Dear Reena,

We recently moved into a new home. When I unpacked my silk flower collection, I was horrified to see that they are completely squished and wrinkled. How can I remove the wrinkles? Darnia

Dear Darnia,

Soak the flowers upside down in a bucket of warm sudsy water for 15 mins. Allow them to dry and reshape them when damp. Another option is to let the steam from a hot shower draw out the wrinkles or use a heat gun. However, a heat gun is less effective and more time consuming.

Feedback from Smart Contributor

Re: Car windows and stove grease

Dear Reena,

With regards to the car, the absolute best way to clean everything inside a car (and deodorize it at the same time) is to use coffee! Take the remaining coffee from your pot and two wash clothes and go to town! You can literally clean everything with this, including door panels.
As for the grease on the floor around the stove, purchase a container of waterless GOJO and spread it out on the grease. Give it a couple of minutes, and then use a damp cloth to wipe it up! This also works fantastic for cleaning marks off walls, fridges and everything else and makes your kitchen smell incredible. Robert

Life Just Got Easier!

·        Here is a good idea for people with dogs. When someone comes to the door, all dogs want to see who it is. Purchase a baby gate and mount it between the inside and outside door. When mounting the gate, make sure that the dog can’t squeeze underneath. Then you can open your door to see who is there and the dog cannot get out! Submitted By: Robert

·        We head down south every winter and always shut off our water to avoid flooding messes. One additional step that we take before leaving is to plastic wrap our toilet. Doing this prevents unwanted pests from crawling up pipes and living in our home (the lid doesn’t always deter pests). Stay Warm, Miranda

·        When I burned my hand with hot butter, I sliced a russet potato, placed the slices over the burn and wrapped my hand with a kitchen towel. The starch in the potato stopped most of the blistering and eased the pain. Submitted By: Pat

Note: Every user assumes all risks of injury or damage resulting from the implementation of any suggestions in this column. Test all products on an inconspicuous area first.

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