I used to write a household tips column for a quarterly magazine, which meant I spent lots of time experimenting with stuff like getting ballpoint pen stains out of t-shirts (hairspray) and getting the glass in the oven door back to see-through and gleaming (a razor blade).
One subject I never touched on was the many and varied things that can be washed in a dishwasher. Why? Because it would never occur to me to wash my gumboots in my Miele. I clean my boots like the good Lord intended: using the outdoor tap, cold water and an old sponge. Sometimes I rub them with Shout gel first to remove the worst of the stains but cold water gets the mud off.
Know what else goes under the garden tap when they need a wash? Garden tools. Also, pet toys.
The writer of this article on Divine Caroline recommends the dishwasher for all three – as well as baseballs caps, hubcaps and wheel covers. How did anyone discover this, and why are they admitting to it in public?
I like killing bacteria as much as the next person, but teacups and shoes do not go together, whatever Divine Caroline says.