How To Properly Load A Dishwasher

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Is your dishwasher not running correctly? Are the dishes not getting entirely clean? You may be loading your dishwasher wrong. The way it’s loaded can affect the cleaning cycle probably more than you realize.

The first thing to think about is: do you load your dishwasher with food still caked on or do you rinse the dishes before putting them in? Some dishwashers aren’t able to get all that food off. The best bet to get clean dished is to rinse that dried food off before you even think about loading the washer.

Top rack

Cups, glasses and small bowls belong in this rack. If you have Tupperware or other plastics that are dishwasher safe, they should go up top as well. They are further from the heat and are less likely to deform. Don’t overcrowd the dishes because it can affect the flow of water and prevent detergent from getting into every dish.

Bottom shelf

Lager items such as plates, serving bowls, etc. will have the most room on the bottom shelf. Cutting boards and other oversized items shouldn’t go in the middle of the bottom shelf. Place them along the sides, so they don’t block the flow of water and detergent.

If you didn’t rinse off the baked-on food, place those items face down so they will get more of the spray.

Most pots and pans can go in the dishwasher too. Make sure to check for a dishwasher-safe label on the bottom.


Utensils should be loaded with the handles facing down so the water can reach the parts that need the most cleaning. Put knives in face down, so you don’t cut yourself when you’re unloading everything. Mix different silverware to make sure they don’t get stuck to each other.

Things to not put in the dishwasher

Some things should always be hand washed. Putting them in the dishwasher could damage all of these objects.

  • Cast-iron skillet
  • Wooden utensils
  • Insulated mugs
  • Fancy knives
  • Copper mugs, pots or pans
  • Crystal
  • Any aluminum cookware
  • Wooden cutting boards
  • Vintage plates or china
  • Any bottle with a label still on it. (It can get stuck in the filter and lead to more serious problems.
  • Cheese grater

The hot water, rinse cycle and detergent can break, chip, discolor or dull the majority of these everyday kitchen items. If you have older pieces that aren’t of any sentimental value, it might not bother you to place some of these things in the dishwasher. But, if you want things to look new for as long as possible, hand washing is the best way to go.

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If your dishwasher, or any other appliance, has stopped working for any reason, give us a call. We are professionals and can get your home back in working order!

August 2018




Virginia, Maryland, District of Columbia & North Virginia including: Alexandria, Arlington, Ashburn, Burke, Bristow, Clifton, Dulles, Dumfries, Fairfax, Falls Church, Great Falls, Herndon, Lorton, Manassas, McLean, Oakton, Reston, Springfield, Sterling, Vienna, Woodbridge

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What Appliances Can Able Appliance & HVAC Service Repair?

If you have it, we can probably fix it. Based in Bristow, VA, we service many areas, including Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia, and North Virginia.


Most people use microwaves daily to thaw frozen foods, reheat leftovers, and cook meals. Common problems your microwave can develop include:

  • The plate won’t turn.
  • The microwave doesn’t turn on or off.
  • The door won’t close or open.
  • The microwave doesn’t heat properly.
  • It makes strange or loud sounds.
  • The light stops working.
  • The touchpad won’t respond.

Call to schedule a repair today if you notice any of these warning signs.


Whether you own a separate freezer or only the one on your refrigerator, you count on it to keep perishable items frozen for later use. If the freezer fails, you may lose hundreds of dollars worth of food. Some warning signs of freezer malfunction include:

  • Water leaks
  • Frost or ice buildup
  • Strange sounds
  • Temperature variations
  • Constantly running compressor

The freezer also might just stop working.

Ice Makers

Many people enjoy the convenience of built-in ice makers. Signs that yours isn’t working correctly:

  • Ice is fractured, frosted, or strangely shaped.
  • Ice won’t release from the mold.
  • The outside ejector doesn’t produce ice.

Common issues include clogged water lines, incorrectly set thermostats, unlevel mounting, and clogged water filters.


Gone are the days when someone had to wash dishes by hand in the sink daily. Most people use their dishwashers every day to avoid that manual task. You may notice:

  • Your dishes aren’t clean after a wash cycle.
  • The dishwasher won’t run.
  • The machine won’t fill or drain properly.
  • Your dishwasher has a foul odor.
  • Operation makes more noise than usual.
  • Water leaks onto the floor.

Able Appliance & HVAC Service can diagnose and repair your issue.


Every kitchen has a refrigerator. Some people have them in garages and offices too. We count on these essential appliances to keep our food fresh. It’s time to schedule a repair if:

  • The refrigerator operates constantly or won’t come on at all.
  • The temperature is too hot or too cold, not adjusting with the thermostat.
  • Water leaks onto the floor.
  • The water dispenser won’t release water.
  • The appliance makes loud noises.

Most of these issues are easily repaired.

Ovens, Stoves, and Ranges

Families that enjoy home-cooked meals and freshly baked desserts rely on their ovens and stoves. Owners can choose gas or electric appliances, and the repair issues can differ for each type. However, the problems you may notice remain similar.


  • The oven won’t heat to the set temperature correctly or at all.
  • The interior light won’t come on or turn off.
  • The self-cleaning feature doesn’t work.
  • The door won’t open or close.
  • Your food cooks unevenly.
  • Your controls aren’t responsive.
  • The heating or broiling element won’t ignite or come on.

Stovetops and Ranges

  • Eyes won’t ignite or power on.
  • Temperatures don’t adjust to your settings.
  • The indicator lights don’t work.
  • Turning the eyes on produces sparks or strange smells.
  • Bubbles, cracks, or blisters appear on the cooktop or coils.

Able Appliance & HVAC Service technicians can repair all brands of electric and gas ovens, stoves, cooktops, and gas range tops.

Washers and Dryers

Everyone needs clean clothes, sheets, and towels. Our washers and dryers make that easy to accomplish unless they stop working properly. Each appliance typically gives you signs that repairs are necessary.


  • Water won’t fill or drain.
  • Water overfills or leaks.
  • The agitator won’t spin.
  • The washer vibrates excessively or makes loud noises.
  • Unpleasant odors persist.
  • The door doesn’t open.
  • The machine ruins your laundry.
  • The washer won’t turn on or stop


  • The dryer doesn’t power on or only runs for a short time.
  • The dryer won’t heat or overheat.
  • The machine takes too long to dry laundry.
  • The drum won’t spin.
  • The dryer is too noisy or vibrates excessively.
  • The laundry has wrinkles or lint.

These appliances come in many makes and models, and Able Appliance & HVAC Service can repair them all.

AC and Heating

When your heating or air conditioning isn’t working properly, your home can quickly become uncomfortable. Common issues you’ll notice are:

  • The air isn’t heated or cooled to the correct temperature, the heat blows cold air, or the AC blows hot air.
  • The unit runs constantly or won’t turn on.
  • Fluid leaks from your inside or outside units.
  • Your system is too loud.

Schedule a repair appointment to avoid further damage if you experience any of these problems.

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