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Cleaning Tips: How to Prevent Cloudy Glassware

Martha Stewart Living, March 2014

Q: Why do my glasses look cloudy right out of the dishwasher?
—Rachel Clarke, Hopewell, N.J.

A: A common reason for cloudy glass is hard water, but there may be another culprit: minuscule, irreversible scratches, which can result from a reaction between glass composition, water, and detergent, says Beth Robinson, brand experience manager at KitchenAid. If the film remains after you rub the glass with distilled white vinegar, which removes hard water’s calcium and magnesium buildup, it’s likely due to this fine etching. If not, you likely have hard water; add a rinse aid (such as Finish) to the dishwasher’s dispenser.

Comments (10)

  • dlcunningham 7 Feb, 2015

    I have used every glass cleaner, suggestion, tips, etc. on removing the white film on my drink ware and nothing takes it off. We have a water softener so hard water is not the problem. I've used dishwashing detergents with lemon and also the recommended detergent for my dishwasher. I've even soaked my glasses in a buckets of hot water with Oxy Clean for days and it still won't come off. Any suggestions will be appreciated.

  • Cathie LoGrasso 25 Jan, 2015

    I have researched the best ways to remove hard water scaling from glass and plastic and found that vinegar is my favorite.

  • Jella Rene 25 Aug, 2014

    If you are looking for really clean dishes from an eco friendly company I suggest the Rockin Green guys, they make an Auto Dish detergent that is super concentrated and free of chemicals or dyes. Highly recommended. I use a tiny bit in my washer and everything come out spotless. I honestly don't know how they do it.

  • momvarden 16 Aug, 2014

    Be careful with the lemi shine, I put it in my dishwasher for the hard water issue and I also put a mug with a logo on it in the dishwasher and it was completely gone. I had washed them in the dishwasher before that so i am sure that it was the lemi shine. If you are looking to remove something from a glass product i guess that would be a good thing.

  • sandraboyd 15 Aug, 2014

    Try tossing 2-3 Tbsp. of baking soda in the bottom of your dishwasher just before starting it up. Works great with our hard well water!

  • LilcoRUN974 15 Aug, 2014

    I drink fresh squeezed lemon juive everymorning. I just put the lemon peels in the dishwasher instead of throwing them away. It leaves everything clear and shiny with a nice lemon scent

  • Kathy Wilman 27 Feb, 2014

    I add 1-2 tablespoons of coarse salt every few loads.

  • vjdeed 27 Feb, 2014

    YES, just use undiluted white vinegar in the rinse compartment. This is much cheaper, convenient, and most of all - effective!

  • Amy Miles 27 Feb, 2014

    I use Lemishine and never have cloudy glasses anymore. I just pour about a tablespoon of it in with my regular detergent. Super easy.

  • Theresa Stillens 27 Feb, 2014

    I have very hard water and Finish seems to makes the cloudiness much worse. Any suggestions? Can you use straight vinegar as the rinse aide?