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10 things you shouldn't put in your dishwasher

Your dishwasher can't clean everything. Here's what you should clean by hand.

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Alina Bradford

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While there are a lot of unusual things you can put in your dishwasher, there are a few everyday items you should definitely hand wash to extend the item's life and the life of your dishwasher.

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Copper

Dishwashers can dull copper pots, pans and mugs. To keep their shine, always hand wash.

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Water bottles

Most water bottles can be washed in the dishwasher, but that doesn't mean you should. Food particles can easily be trapped inside of the bottle. What's worse is that it's hard to tell these particles are there until your drink softens and dislodges them and you get a weird taste in your mouth. Instead, use a bottle brush to give your water bottle a good scrub.

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Wine bottles

Wine bottles have the same problem as water bottles. The answer is to do a load with just wine bottles or just wash them by hand. Don't put wine bottles that still have labels on them in the dishwasher, though. The labels can wash off and get stuck in the drain.

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Wooden utensils

Wooden utensils can warp and even mold when put in the dishwasher. Hand wash them and be sure to dry them well with a dish towel. 

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Cutting boards

The same goes for wooden cutting boards. Hand washing is always best, and make sure they get dry quickly.

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Corks

Though corks are great for DIY projects, they aren't made for the dishwasher. Instead, boil them for around five minutes on the stove.

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Antiques

This plate once had a gold band around it. A few washes in the dishwasher and that band got disintegrated. Most antiques -- gold banded or not -- weren't meant for the dishwasher. Hand wash them every time.

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Oil and grease

Though you don't need to pre-rinse most of your dishes, the one exception is pots, pans and other items covered in a thick layer of oil or grease. The gunk can congeal in your dishwasher's drain or filter and cause a clog over time.

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Plastics

Unless your plastic bowls and containers say "dishwasher safe" on the bottom, hand wash them. The dishwasher can melt and warp some plastics.

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Insulated cups

Your insulated coffee cup should be hand washed unless the cleaning instruction that came with it states it's dishwasher safe. Dishwashers can ruin the insulation inside the cup.

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