These days you almost cannot walk into a home and not find a dishwasher. It may be the one convenience that most of us feel lost without. It saves us time, energy and money all of which we often find in short supply today. Of course, the dishwasher's best feature may be how simple it is to use. All one has to do is properly load the dishes into the racks, twist a knob, and perhaps hit a button and the job is done.

Dishwashers have been increasing in complexity and function for several years now, with self drying and rinse cycles builtin as standard to a lot of models. They even come in a range of colors now, with stainless steel, black, and even silver dishwashers being common, a far cry from the old standalone beige model. But no matter what color or advanced features are in your dishwasher, the same standard rules apply for its usage, and you should know how to load it correctly.

Proper loading may sound like a scary concept but it is actually quite easy. The first step is to scrape excess food from the dishes to be washed. This is a quick process and is often the only step needed before loading since most of the units today do not require prewashing.

When you load your unit, it is best to start with the bottom shelf. This is where you load pots, pans, bake ware, plates, and usually eating and small serving utensils. The utensils are the clearest usually loading into a basket or rack of some sort that holds them upright throughout the washing process. Next load plates. These are loaded standing upright on the bottom rack. Try to make sure all plates face toward the center of the dishwasher. In the space that remains, load your pots and pans facing down on the bottom shelf. Make sure to leave some room open so that the spray can reach items on the top shelf.

Finally, load the top shelf. Items placed here should consist of cups, glasses, and saucers. Place cups and glasses open side down and saucers forward facing. This is also where you should place any dishwasher safe plastics such as baby bottles and storage ware. The top shelf is also an excellent location for cooking utensils and longer serving pieces.

That's all it takes and your done. With proper loading, your dishwasher becomes your favorite appliance saving you time, energy and money. In just a few short minutes, you are ready to leave the kitchen and get back to doing what you really enjoy.