washing dishes

Our boat doesn't have hot running water, we wash the dishes with cold water by way of a manual pump in the galley. When the weather is nice, we wash the dishes outside in the cockpit with a pressure sprayer to save on water, and let them air dry in the sun. Remember that when cleaning, hard scrubbing often works better than applying chemicals.

We avoid using too much soap to wash dishes because it ends up in the water and is harmful to sea life. Phosphates, surfactants, triclosans, or any antibacterial ingredient, will do harm. The EPA recommends diluting 28 ml (1 oz) of biodegradable soap in 591 L (20,000 oz) of water. Below are alternatives to using soap when washing dishes (note that we follow a plantbased diet, if washing dishes that have come into contact with raw meat you may have to take additional steps):

Hot water. When dishes are especially dirty, we boil water in a kettle on the stove top. Hot water is good at removing odors, bacteria and dirt (we don't have a water heater aboard Pino). Using hot water is also good to help keep the drain clean, after a while of using nothing but cold water the plumbing can get grimy.

Baking soda. Mix a bit of water with some baking soda to create a scouring paste which is useful to lift oil and food particles. Baking soda also acts as an effective fungicide against certain organisms[Source].

Salt. Scrubbing pots and pans with a mixture of coarse salt and water helps to remove stubborn food particles.

5% Distilled white vinegar. Vinegar is a good, inexpensive, nontoxic, cleaning agent and deodorizer, strong enough to kill household pathogens (note that it doesn't kill them all, it's inneffective against salmonella) [Source]. Dilute the vinegar with water 2:1.