What Does the Sanitization Cycle on My Dishwasher Mean?
Ideas and Advice

What Does the Sanitization Cycle on My Dishwasher Mean?

Modern kitchens aren't complete without a dishwasher, and most newer models come equipped with a sanitize cycle. The convenience a dishwasher provides allows you to spend less time in the kitchen, and the sanitize cycle leaves your dishes germ-free. Many modern brands like Bosch dishwashers and GE dishwashers have a sanitize cycle option, making dinner clean-up a breeze. Let's take a look at what the sanitary cycle is used for, and why it's important to choose an appliance that has this option.

Why Do I Need a Sanitary Cycle?

Why Do I Need a Sanitary Cycle

Germs are everywhere, and microscopic organisms can be found on all surfaces, including your plates, cups, and forks and spoons. After a wash cycle, it's easy to assume that your dishes are clean, but that's not always the case. Bacteria and viruses can remain on your dishes, leadinf to health problems. This is especially true for people who are very young, very old, or have weakened immune systems.

Many modern dishwashers today are equipped with a sanitary cycle that effectively eliminates over 99% of common household bacteria, so you can be certain that your dinnerware is safe to eat from. Nothing beats the peace of mind that this function provides.

How Does a Sanitary Cycle Work?

How Does a Sanitary Cycle Work

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determines that an item is effectively sanitized if 99.999% of bacteria is removed. When it comes to dishwashers, the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) awards appliances with a highly sought-after certification if they're able to sanitize at the level recognized by the EPA. These dishwashers must also reach temperatures of at least 150° F during the final rinse, which effectively kills germs like E. coli and Legionella, and many viruses as well.

A dishwasher's sanitary cycle works by using very hot water and extra wash times to ensure that germs are completely eliminated from all the items inside. Most dishwashers with a sanitary cycle also incorporate the use of high-powered jets that remove tough stains as well.

Our NSF-Certified Expert Picks

Our NSF-Certified Expert Picks

NSF certification is an esteemed award that is given to dishwashers that meet the criteria of reaching temperatures of at least 150° F. Dishwashers that receive NSF certification can be trusted to effectively eliminate 99.999% of food soil bacteria. There are plenty of NSF-Certified dishwashers on the market right now from brands like GE and Bosch.

The top control dishwasher from GE, for example, is equipped with a sanitize cycle that can be combined with a steam option to effectively loosen tough soils and leave your dishes completely germ-free. End your wash cycle with the Dry Boost™ feature, and your dishes will come out three times dryer than if you used a heated dry function.

The Ascenta® dishwasher from Bosch is also NSF-Certified, and it's comes with a sleek stainless steel exterior. This dishwasher features a sanitize cycle that effectively eliminates over 99.9% of all common household bacteria, so you can be confident that every item is clean when the cycle is complete. The dishwasher also operates at a near-silent 50dBA, and PrecisionWash™ technology makes it easy to press start and simply walk away.

Related Questions

Does dishwasher detergent kill germs?

Yes, dishwasher detergent can wash away many germs and effectively remove food particles from your dishes. Unfortunately, dishwasher detergent can't remove viruses along with many other harmful contaminants. This is why it is so important to use the sanitary cycle.

What can you use the sanitary cycle on?

Obviously, this cycle is perfect for washing dishes, but it's also effective at removing germs from a variety of other items like baby toys, bottles and even Lego bricks.