There are people in this world who believe they would perish without their beloved dishwasher.
But even good dishwashers need their trusty right-hand assistants - a decent dishwasher detergent and accompanying rinse aid. But how do we tell which dishwasher detergents are doing the best job?
CHOICE has put dishwasher detergents to the test to determine where the best bang for your buck lies.
And where bargain buys can in some cases be found doing exactly the same job as more expensive brands, this is not the case with the detergent you use in your dishwasher. You're simply going to have to pay a bit more to get the best one.
Here are CHOICE's results, with the best detergents shown first.
BEST DISHWASHER DETERGENTS
1. Earth Choice Dish Tablets
CHOICE's score: 77 per cent
Cost: $16.20 for a 42-pack (39c per wash)
Although not the cheapest, Earth Choice Dish Tablets took the top gong for consistently performing the best out of any. It's an environmentally-sound and cruelty-free choice too, with no harsh chemicals or animal testing conducted to make the product.
2. Woolworths Shine 10 in 1 Dishwashing Tablets and Coles Ultra Plus+ Advanced Clean Lemon Fresh Tablets
CHOICE's score: 73 per cent
Cost: $4.50/30-pack or 15c per wash (Woolworths); $6/30-pack or 20c per wash (Coles)
In joint second place are the Coles and Woolworths own brand tablets. At half the cost of the winner, they're a god choice for the budget-conscious, and did particularly well on cleaning 'egg yolk and baked-on cheese' from ceramic plates.
THE WORST POWDER
Woolworths Shine Dishwasher Powder Concentrate
CHOICE's score: 38 per cent
Cost: $4/1L (8c per wash)
Don't even both with this dud. CHOICE writes, "It scored just 13 per cent on our test for removing rice starch and 23 per cent for egg yolk removal".
It's worth noting that powders generally perform worse than tablets, according to CHOICE, which explains why there are non in the top three.
THE WORST TABLET
Finish Powerball Supercharged Max in 1 Deep Clean
CHOICE's score: 48 per cent
Cost: $15.99/50-pack (32c per wash)
While these are marketed at a premium price, you shouldn't believe the hype. Finish Powerball Supercharged Max in 1 Deep Clean performed the worst of all tablet detergents.