Julies Blog

To pre-rinse or not pre-rinse

by Julie Finch-Scally

Each night when we have finished our evening meal hubby takes the plates out and rinses them along with the cutlery in hot water. 

I have read articles that say pre-rinsing is a waste of time, especially if the items are to be placed in a dish washer.  The flow of water in the dish washer is so strong that nothing is left on the plates anyway.

I am not sure I agree with this concept.  Yes the flow of water in a dish washer is strong, but quite often dishes sit in the washer for hours, or a day, until the washer is filled; this means the leftover food on the plate becomes hard and in the long run more difficult to remove.  The other reason I am not happy with this concept is the debris stuck to the plate is flushed around inside the washer flowing over other items in the machine and eventually ending up at the bottom in the filter.  No matter how hot the water and how strong the detergent I find this a little unhygienic. 

If the dishes are pre-rinsed this is not a problem. The dish washer scalds the articles during the wash so one can be assured everything will come out hygienically clean.

The same argument can be used if the dishes are washed in a sink.  By not rinsing the plates prior to washing all the debris floats around in the washing up water and passes over everything else.  Once again. Not very hygienic.  As washing up water is never as hot as the water in a dishwasher those bits of debris sitting in the sink are more likely to cause harm.

Now there is some argument for scraping the food scraps off the plates prior to placing the dishes in the dishwasher, and many people do that.  But this still doesn’t remove the gravies and sauces with minute bits of food from the plate.  And although the debris being flushed through the machine is not as messy as when dishes are just placed in the machine racks, I still cannot see this is any less unhygienic. 

I like the idea of plates being scalded by the hot water in a dish washer.  I also feel more comfortable with the suds and hot water of the washing up solution in the sink removing any bacteria left on the plate once those items have been rinsed prior to washing.

Yes I’ve heard the argument that dishes do not need to be pre-rinsed before being washed in a dish washer or washing in a sink, but I am afraid I do not agree with it.  I am all for pre-rinsing in hot water.  Then I feel comfortable with the results.   



You can always tell when the cleaner is away

by Julie Finch-Scally

Isn’t it a shame you can always tell when the cleaner is on holidays?  Why should I say this?  Because it means society has lost its ability to clean up after themselves. 

When I was running my cleaning business one of the things I used to tell new cleaners was, customers never notice what you do, but they always see what you miss.  And after a New Year weekend in Geneva it was noticeable that the building cleaner was on holidays.  There were empty coffee cups, cigarette packets, chocolate wrappers and cigarette butts laying around the courtyard and in the lift.

I had often seen the cleaner hosing down the courtyard in the mornings, so such debris was always washed away.  The whole area always looked neat and pristine.

This shows how much we rely on cleaners.  Seeing the state of the courtyard after the New Year weekend, made me realise how lazy society has become.  Because we know someone will clean up after us we don’t bother to take our rubbish home or pick up after ourselves.

As a child my mother made me pickup my bits.  But in so many homes now this is not the case.  Children pull out all their toys and leave them for someone else to put away.  No wonder when they become adults they do not think twice about dropping that empty packet of cigarettes on the ground and leaving it there, instead of placing it into a rubbish bin. 

The job of a cleaner is to clean.  Unfortunately over the past twenty to thirty years we have placed them in the role of servant, which means we expect them to pick up and tidy for us as well as clean.

One of the policies of my company was to ask customers to tidy up before the cleaner arrived.  This allowed the cleaner to do so much more work.  Picking up the mess left by the inhabitants left less time for the cleaning.  For some reason many customers didn’t understand that.  They thought because they were paying for someone to come in to clean it was OK to leave a mess.  After several cleans when less and less cleaning was being achieved, the customer started to complain, never seeing they were causing the problem.

For several years now I have been saying that Cleaners are the Hygiene Managers of the World, but society is just as responsible for hygiene as the cleaner.  If we want to keep our properties and cities clean we must learn to tidy up after ourselves as we once did.   



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