Accidentally Put Silver in Dishwasher? Here’s Exactly What to do

Accidentally Put Silver in Dishwasher? Here’s Exactly What to do

Imagine you’re at a dinner party, enjoying good food and great company. As the night winds down, you offer to help clean up, then you start loading dishes into the dishwasher.

You accidentally toss your silverware in the dishwasher along with the rest of the dishes. It seems harmless enough, right?

But as you wake up the next morning and open the dishwasher, you’re met with a sight that makes your heart sink: your once-shiny silverware is now tarnished and covered in black marks.

Unfortunately, that’s one of the disadvantages of silverwares.

Don’t panic, we’ve all been there. In fact, accidentally putting silver in the dishwasher is a common mistake that can happen to even the most experienced kitchen warriors. There are ways to fix the damage and prevent it from happening again. So, pull up a chair as we’ll explore this in this article

What Happens When Silverware is put in the dishwasher?

Silver is a soft metal that can be easily damaged by harsh chemicals and high temperatures.

Unfortunately, dishwashers are designed to use powerful detergents and hot water to get your dishes sparkling clean.

That means that when you throw your silverware in the dishwasher, it’s exposed to a lot of things that can cause damage. This is the reason, it’s advisable to always a guage a cookwares safety for dishwasher before putting them in.

One of the most common effects of putting silver in the dishwasher is tarnishing.

Tarnish is a natural process that occurs when silver reacts with sulfur in the air or in detergents. It can make your silverware look dull and discoloured, and it can be difficult to remove once it sets in.

Another effect is etching and pitting.

This can happen when the high temperature and pressure of the dishwasher cause tiny scratches or pits to form on the surface of your them.

Unfortunately, this kind of damage can be much more difficult to repair than tarnishing.

In some cases, one may need to take it to a professional for restoration services.

Of course, the best way to deal with these effects is to prevent them from happening in the first place. And you can do this by hand-washing your silverware yourself. Take it as a habit.

You could also get the whole family involved if that’s fine with them.

How to Fix Silverware that has been put in the Dishwasher

So, you’ve accidentally put your silverware in the dishwasher, and now you’re left with tarnished, etched, or pitted silverware. Don’t panic! Here are the fixes:

If it is only tarnished, you can try using a silver polish or other cleaning products specifically designed for silverware.

Make sure to follow the instructions carefully and be gentle when cleaning.

You can also try using baking soda and aluminium foil to remove the tarnish. Simply line a dish with aluminium foil, fill it with hot water and baking soda, and soak your it for a few minutes. Then, rinse and dry it thoroughly.

If your silverware is already etched or pitted, you may need to take more drastic measures.

One is to put them in direct sunlight or in contact with other metals. You can also use anti-tarnish strips or bags to help prevent tarnishing.

How to Prevent future Silverware Mishaps

It is best to put into use some preventive measures to avoid accidentally putting silver in the dishwasher. Here are some of them:

  • Keep your silverware separate from your other dishes: This way, you’ll avoid scratches and dings that can happen when it rubs up against other items. Plus, it’ll make it easier to spot any stray pieces that may have accidentally made their way into the dishwasher.
  • Use a low-temperature or gentle cycle when running your dishwasher: High temperatures and harsh detergents can cause serious damage to your silverware, so it’s important to use the right settings. If you’re unsure which cycle to use, check the manufacturer’s instructions or do a quick online search for tips on cleaning them.
  • Wash by hand: Yes, we know it can be a bit of a hassle, but hand-washing is the best way to ensure that some of your delicate cookware stay looking beautiful for years to come. Just make sure to use gentle dish soap and avoid using abrasive sponges or brushes that can scratch them.
  • Store properly to prevent damage and tarnishing: Keep your silverware in a dry, cool place, and avoid storing it in direct sunlight or in contact with other metals. You can also use anti-tarnish strips or bags to help prevent tarnishing.


We’ve explored everything about accidentally putting silver in the dishwasher from the effects of cleaning/fixing tips, and even some preventive measures. But what’s the key takeaway?

Well, it’s pretty simple – take care of your silverware! Whether you choose to wash it by hand or run it through the dishwasher, just be sure to use the right settings and take precautions to avoid scratches, dings, and tarnishing.

And if you do accidentally put silver in the dishwasher, don’t panic – there are still plenty of ways to clean and fix your silverware.

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