Small Space Ideas: Dish Racks

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Dish racks are a smart idea for those stuck with small living spaces that don’t have dishwashers. If you’re an apartment dweller without a dishwasher, save yourself time and effort by purchasing a rack for drying dishes:

Purpose of Dish Racks

You use a dish rack to dry your dishes after washing them. If you handwash your dishes, using a dish rack to dry your dishes saves you a lot of time and effort. Even if you have a dishwasher, you can actually lower your energy bill by stopping the dishwashing cycle before it reaches the drying cycle and hanging the dishes out to dry on your rack. A rack for drying dishes takes up only a small amount of space on a kitchen counter or in the sink, making them perfect additions to any small apartment.

Types of Dish Racks

You have a number of choices when it comes to purchasing a rack for drying dishes. Some of the more common types include:

  • Countertop rack: The most basic dish rack is the countertop dish rack, which you can place next to or near your sink to deposit dishes in as soon as you finish washing them. These types of racks may be small and single-leveled or they can be two or three levels high. These are usually made of metal or plastic, but may be made of bamboo or wood as well.
  • Sink dish rack: Some apartments simply don’t have ample space for many appliances. If you don’t have adequate room on your counter for a rack, you can purchase a sink dish rack, which is intended for use in your sink. After you wash the dishes, you drain the water from the sink and place the elevated rank in the sink. This also makes for easier clean-up, as excess water drips away down the sink.
  • Multi-utensil rack: Some racks include multiple compartments, slots and baskets intended for each type of common kitchenware, including plates, silverware, mugs and glasses. These racks are better suited for drying all types of dishes and make it easier to balance multiple dishes on the rack.
  • Foldable rack: Racks made of material like bamboo are highly convenient for those with limited space. When your dishes have finished drying, you can fold it up and store it flat against the wall or in a cupboard.

How to Properly Use a Dish Rack

To properly use a dish rack, you must first make sure your dishes are properly rinsed and then give them a shake over the sink to remove the excess water. If your dish rack is on the counter-top, make sure it’s placed over a towel or mat to catch any water that drips off so you won’t have to clean the mess later.

To load the dish rack, follow the intended design of your rack. Most dish racks have slots in which you can load plates standing upright. Other racks may include compartments for glasses, which you should place upside down, or silverware, which you can hang in the basket in either vertical direction. Mugs can often hang from hooks by their handles.

Knowing which dish racks work best with your home and understanding how to properly fill them will make doing dishes much easier for you. Don’t dry dishes by hand when you can get a rack to do the drying for you.

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