7 Items You Should Never Put in the Dishwasher

Do you know which items are not dishwasher safe?

Amanda Thomas
5-minute read
Episode #215

Having a dishwasher in your kitchen can be a huge time saver. Not only can you get all your dishes and silverware clean, but you can also use your dishwasher to clean and sanitize a variety of other items from around your home. While there are almost countless items you can clean in your dishwasher, there are also a few things you should never put in your dishwasher. The constant spraying of super hot water and exposure to the heated dry cycle can lead to accidental damage. Here are seven items that should never be put in the dishwasher.

Wooden Utensils

Wooden utensils are great for cooking, but they are somewhat finicky when it comes to being cleaned. You can’t throw them in the dishwasher or let them soak in water like you can plastic or silicone utensils because the water can seep in to the wood. This alone can cause it to start to make the utensil fall apart, but also consider that wood expands and contracts with temperature changes. A dishwasher cycle will expose the wooden utensils to a constant barrage of hot water for the duration of the cycle. Then, if the heated dry cycle is on, you are going to blast the already hot, wet wood with a whole lot of extra heat. Combine the water and the heat changes, and you are destined to ruin your wooden utensils by putting them in the dishwasher too many times. It’s best to simply hand wash and immediately dry these items to keep them in good working condition.

Wooden Cutting Boards

Now that we’ve gone over the basics of how water and heat can damage wood in general, it should be no surprise that the next item on this list is a wooden cutting board. Just like those wooden utensils can get damaged by the water and heat of a dishwashing cycle, so can a wooden cutting board. A wooden cutting board can probably withstand a few rounds in the dishwasher, but eventually it’s going to start breaking down the protective coating that the board came with. When this happens, the wood will start to warp, it will start to become rough, and you may actually have little slivers of wood start to separate and fall away from the board. Protect your good wooden cutting boards by hand washing them, immediately drying them with a clean towel, and them to sit on the counter to air dry completely. Getting all the moisture off the board is key to keeping these cutting boards in excellent condition.

Good Knives

Not only should you not put your cutting board through the dishwasher, but you also should not put your knives through a cycle. A set of good knives is an investment for your kitchen, so you want to make sure you are caring for them correctly. When you put knives in the dishwasher, the impact of streams of water hitting them can cause them to collide with other items. This causes them to become dulled and even chipped. Also, I’ve discovered the hard way that leaving knives in the dishwasher for any amount of time after the cycle runs causes the knives to accumulate rust. Dulling, chips, and rust are obviously not things that you want to have happen to your expensive knives, so washing and immediately drying them will allow you to continue chopping and cutting with ease.