Chemical Scratching on China in Dishwashers
How can you tell if marks on your china are caused by a chemical reaction? Although they have a similar appearance to other types of scratching, you will find the chemical marking on particular areas of your china, where there is the greatest stress. These scratches will generally form a pattern, quite commonly you will see this as a sort of swirl.
Unfortunately, once these marks have appeared, there is nothing you can do about it short of either throwing the china away, or use it in a more creative way, such as plant pot stands etc. At least it won’t be a total waste if you can use the plates for something else. It is not recommended that you continue to use this china for food, as dirt and germs can get caught in the scratches.
The reasons for this chemical reaction include:
- Poor quality china
- Older and well-used china
- You live in a soft water area
- Too long and too high temperature wash cycles
As indicted above, china does wear like anything else, especially hard working items such as everyday plates, and it is a good idea to periodically go through your china and discard the oldest and replace with new.
Poorer quality china can be more soft and porous, which allows this damage to occur at an earlier stage.
If you live in a soft water area, it is probably a good idea to have a word with your neighbours as they may be able to give you some suggestions for the best type of dishwasher detergent that you could use.
In most cases, even after a roast dinner, your plates do not get heavily soiled and can be cleaned perfectly well on a lower temperature programme. This should help to extend the life of your china.
When purchasing new china please first of all check the label to ensure the china is dishwasher proof.
As a general rule, your most expensive china that you save for special occasions will probably last much longer if you go the old fashioned way and hand wash them.