Thursday, July 03, 2008

Battle of the Suds

I was out of dishwashing detergent and being the frugal person that I am, I said to the family, “I’m not buying detergent until we move. I’ve got some Dawn in here that we can use.”

And then the moaning ensued. Too bad for them. I’m not above using what I’ve got, and I actually like doing dishes by hand. All they had to do was put the dishes away. Slackers.

However, God in all his infinite wisdom knew that we had better things to do with our time – like packing the house and trying to find a trash can that didn’t require a lien. Those two tasks alone have consumed much of our time... So he had a very nicely-timed challenge plop into my lap. I was asked if I would like to review both Cascade Complete and Electrasol Advance liquid dishwashing detergents to see which cleaner did a better job. That God – he sure has a great sense of timing, not to mention a great sense of humor.

So for the last few weeks, I’ve been alternating the detergents, trying to determine the pros and cons of the two products.

Using the same process for both detergents (no pre-washing, filling dishwasher with the same amount of dishes, letting dishes sit the same amount of time between washings), here’s what I’ve discovered:

Cascade Complete

Liquid is thick
Has a pleasant clean smell
Left the dishes completely clean
Added a “sparkle” to the glasses
No water spots on dishes
Only one filled detergent compartment to clean dishes

Electrasol Advance

Liquid is thick, but not as thick as Cascade
Has a pleasant lemon smell
Food was left on some dishes
Some glasses sparkled
Water spots on silverware
Had to filled the detergent compartment AND the extra fill area to get similar results as Cascade
Hands down, Cascade Complete won the challenge. It did the job right the first time, without using as much detergent to do the job. I’m not really surprised. I always found Cascade to be a time-tested, constantly-working cleaner that makes doing dishes just a little bit easier. Others may be cheaper on the front end, but when you have to use more, pre-wash or rewash some dishes after the fact, you realize that you didn’t really save yourself anything in the long run.

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