Cascade Complete

cascade This section of our website offers a review of currently available products. We will offer our actual experience and the success or failure of the product in living up to the manufacturers claims.

This is the first installment of an ongoing series, where our ‘test’ families will use a product to assess its performance under real home conditions. After a thorough evaluation, we will write a brief review of the products, and offer our opinion to whether the product meets the manufacturers’ claims.

We had four test families evaluating this product. All of the families had children, and three of the families have children under 2 years old. We aren’t sure exactly how this impacts our test, but from our experience we have found that young children can create exceptional messes from seemingly harmless household items. So we figured that this must translate to dishes as well.

The dishwashers being used at these households include a Maytag, a Hot Point, a Meile, and an General Electric. The product tested was Cascade Complete powder, provided by the manufacturer, Proctor and Gamble. This is a new product that claims “From the table to clean with no in-between”. The packaging tells us that the Clean Dissolve Formula actually dissolves food particles so they won’t be transferred onto other dishes or trapped in your dishwasher. Since the food is dissolved, they claim you don’t need to pre-wash your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Great idea in theory, and for the most part it works in real life, too.

In the month we ran our test, our test families did just over 100 loads of dishes, and the items that came out dirty could be counted on one hand. For the most part we were trying to make this product fail – leaving all kinds of disgusting residue on the dishes we were going to wash. We took off the chicken bones, and meat gristle, and piles of food left by one incredibly picky four year old, but we did not rinse the dishes, even the ones that had sit out overnight.

Our failures came mostly from cooked on food. A dish used to make scrambled eggs in the microwave, a pot of dried up oatmeal left out overnight, and a casserole dish with cheese burnt onto the edges were the most significant failures. As well a wooden spoon with a cream based pasta sauce and some noodles, again left out overnight, did not come clean.

Please don’t think we all leave our dishes out overnight, but it happens, mostly when husbands are left in charge of the clean up.

Given the number of dishes we washed, there was less than 1% that needed re-washed. In our opinion this product met it’s manufacturers claims. It should be noted that the packaging recommends filling both soap compartments, which 2 families did each time. One family only added to the pre-wash compartment if the dishes were badly soiled, and the last family only added the soap to the one primary compartment.

The families said without a doubt they will continue to use the product ……until their test supply runs out after which, two families said they would definitely continue to purchase the product and two families said they were likely to continue purchasing the product.

One of our test families wrote us recently with their experience once their test supply of Cascade Complete ran out. Their letter was as follows:

“….only after we ran out, we realized that this product was different from other dishwasher powder. We had gone back to the bulk mega pack soap and after the first load we found THREE dishes with caked on food. This after we had only had three or four dishes with caked on residue from ALL of the loads we did during the two months we used Cascade Complete!! We put the dishes back, and picked up a box of Cascade Complete when we got our groceries that afternoon, and we re-washed the dishes with our load that night. You know, it worked? Even though the food was baked on through the sani wash of the first load, it came clean this time. Maybe we were spoiled by not having to pre-rinse the dishes for 8 weeks, but our old regular brand just does not compare now that we have really used them both on the same problem dishes. We are converts….Thanks”

via e-mail:

I am very pleased with Cascade Complete. My results were similar to those of the test families, but I used the GEL formula. The few failures were on my own “test products” that I let dry overnight – oatmeal, a Corning casserole dish that had been used for a cream of chicken flavored dish, and the dish used to microwave scrambled eggs. All other testing was successful. I will be continuing to use this product.

Linda R.


via e-mail

We received a sample of this product with our new dishwasher. After having tried it, I went out and bought some more. Not only does it do a wonderful job of cleaning dishes without having to pre-wash them, but my daughters are much more willing to do the dishes now that they don’t have to spend so much time “cleaning” the dishes before loading into the dishwasher. This product definitely gets an A+ from our family.

Paula B.

via e-mail

After reading your we tried this product and got uniformly excellent results. We then tried others and only one product, Electrasol Dual Action, was any better. Cascade Complete almost never failed and Electrasol Dual Action never failed in our hard water. Electrasol costs somewhat less than Cascade.

Kent S.

via e-mail

I thought maybe my dishwasher was not working completely; or maybe that dishwashers just wasn’t what they are advertised to do. After I started using Cascade Complete, ALL my dishes are clean, and I don’t have to use Jet Dry for water Spots.

Denise T.

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