Vote for Me, EPA Secretary. I Will Bring Back Phosphates!

I am sick and tired of being sick and tired of my dishes looking like crap out of the dishwasher since they banned phosphates from dishwasher soaps. I blogged about this a while back, a long while back, but darned if I can find the post, even using my own search box with words “Dishwasher” “Phosphates” “Cascade”. A dollar fiddy cents (sorry, the economy had unexpected downturn today!) to the person who can find the old story.

Anyway, I digress.  We all know some idiot at the EPA decided phosphates were killing boodliedworps and skannycads in the deepest darkest forest of NoWhereLand and greenies were screaming phosphates were killing our waters. Not sewage treatment plants. Not gigantic oil tankers. Not speed boats. Not mindless people who throw their trash overboard. Phosphates in Cascade Detergent. Yep, that’s it.

No green website will tell you that phosphorus is found naturally in our soil and in human waste.

I digress again. After the last post, ranting about the how awful Cascade is now, many readers suggested adding products to the base of the dishwasher to bring back the sheen the dishes once had. I bought, and have been using with success, OxiClean Dishwashing Booster.
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But recently I saw an ad for and bought Finish Detergent Booster, thinking, logically (for a woman that is) since I use Finish Dishwashing Gel, using the same brand of booster would make sense.
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Well blow me over with a feather. Reading the back of the Finish Booster, what do I see but this:

DO NOT USE WITH LIQUID BLEACH DETERGENT.

I wasn’t even sure what that statement meant. So I called their 800 number – 1-800-228-4722, and asked, after waiting almost eight minutes what do you mean by liquid bleach dishwasher?

He said, like our Finish Gel Dishwasher product.

Say what?

Certainly no manufacturer would make two of their own products have a negative reaction to each other, would they?

Yes, welcome to the wacky world of the Reckitt Benckiser Company of Parsippany, NJ, makers of Finish products. Seems yes, their own products can’t be used together. I asked the customer service man if he would explain the issue….what actually happens? Will my dishwasher explode? Will my dishes melt? Will they come out purple?

Here’s the answer I got:
It doesn’t say here what the known issue is with the two products or what will happen.

Poor guy on the phone. I started to laugh. An evil laugh, like what possible reason would there be for a reaction, or why on earth would they test, market, and sell two products that surely alot of people are going to buy together, then have in the smallest of print, Do Not Use with Liquid Bleach Detergent, which by the way, includes their OWN gel products.

So I go back to my original statement. When you elect me as your new Secretary of the EPA, I will bring back phosphate use so none of us needs to buy pricey boosters again. I am Finished With Finish. So there.

PS: I’m tweeting this to Renckitt Benckiser @discoverRB.

18 thoughts on “Vote for Me, EPA Secretary. I Will Bring Back Phosphates!

  1. I’d vote you Secretary of Consumer Affairs too. Go get ’em. This is utterly insane. And who really reads the back of the container anyway?

  2. Great post! Good gracious this is really scary stuff.

    I have to rewash most of the dishes after they come out of the dishwasher. I first thought it was the very hard water in our city, and then I blamed it on my dishwasher and told Mr F it wasn’t working properly so in came an appliance repair man who said I must only use Cascade Powder detergent for my machine (not Cascade liquid which I’ve been using for years). Well it was even worse. The powder didn’t dissolve in the water. So I went back to the liquid but it still doesnt clean.

    And today I’ve run out of detergent left but I don’t know what to buy: I say liquid Mr F says powder… What say you oh secretary of Consumer Affairs?

    1. Rosie: I think we’d all be better off going back to the days of our great grandparents who washed dishes in the river without much soap other than something they made themselves.

      Your dishwasher isn’t broken. It the detergent. So many people complained when phosphates were taken out of cascade (all dishwashing detergents actually), blaming their dishwasher for the lines and film on the glasses.

      To answer your question, the additives do help, like the Oxi-Clean especially. And I use that with my Finish Gel.

  3. I remember that post! I’m using green like 7th generation detergent and it’s fine except my glasses are all cloudy. So you think the oxi clean is the way to go? do I have to buy it on TV?

    I’d vote for you for many things including Secretary of State. I know too much about John Kerry to be comfortable with that appointment….hubba hubba.

    1. Maggie: YOU remember that post? I haven’t known you very long. I would have guessed it was way before you stopped by. But that helps alot in my search.

      Definitely Oxi-Clean. Found it at my Shoprite. No need to order online. I do remember thinking it was hidden, not in a logical part of the dishwasher soap shelves. But what is??

      Me. Secretary of State. I could do a better job than Kerry, certainly better than Hillary, but hey, what difference does it make?! 🙂

  4. Rosie: I only use liquid now. I have hard water and even though we have a softener system, I found the powder got clumped inside the filler-upper. Like EOS, I only used Cascade, but their liquid has Dawn added to it and it really did a number on the dishes. It was awful. That leaves Finish, which isn’t so hot either. I like the idea of washing dishes in the river….or using paper!

    EOS, I think that was part of your old post, that Cascade added Dawn.

    PS: Did you just un-nest our comments? I liked having one under the other but they aren’t anymore.

  5. Nice post, EOS, but I reluctantly weigh in here to oppose your nomination for EPA chief, and to suggest you remain in your present post of dishwashing blogger (and calendar editor.)

    Let’s start with the obvious: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphates

    The Kennsico Reservoir in your backyard is almost unusable due to phosphate pollution.
    http://www.nylcvef.org/guide/threats_to_water_quantity The problem has been traced back to your kitchen.

    The county to the north of you, Putnam, has no movies, malls or golf courses to speak of. Why? Phosphates. Yep. NYC drinking water supply cannot stay open with one more of those and your dishwashing habits in the same watershed. (To quote Dave Barry, I swear I am not making this up.) http://www.pcnr.com/news/2010-02-10/front_page/005.html

    In Florida, the famous Silver Springs of Marion County are nearly dead, due to phosphate.
    http://www.floridasprings.org/downloads/florida_142_370s78yf.pdf

    Here’s the Sierra Club campaign:
    https://secure.sierraclub.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=8947

  6. Once a month, run the following products thru an empty dishwasher on normal cycle:
    1. Glisten, 2. IronOut. Problems solved.

  7. I have to go with the science: EarthImage has my confidence as Secretary for the Environment, EPA and whatever else requires a clear head and grownup stewardship on behalf of our kids and their generation. I will put up with cloudy glasses or wash them by hand, the proximate river in question being a mostly toxic sewer due to the outdated policies and politics of the well-meaning but scientifically retarded US Army Corps of Engineers. Nice Rant, though, EOS, and entertaining too!

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