Back to Overview


Reusable plastic cups are important pieces of equipment for schools, care homes and hospitals as well as increasing numbers of businesses looking to reduce their environmental impact by not using disposable plastic cups. However, plastic cups can be challenging to clean and dry in commercial dishwashers. Their light weight means the powerful water jets machines can flip the cups over, making them fill up with water, so the cleaning process cannot be completed.

As well as the power of the jets, the temperature of the water in equipment configured for glassware, cutlery and dishes is hot enough to damage plastic cups. Furthermore, plastic requires different chemicals to guarantee safe and effective cleaning, and it dries slowly, which can slow down handling, storing and stacking after the wash.

With the Covid-19 pandemic requiring the highest standards of hygiene in order to stop the transmission of the virus, Winterhalter has launched a system to enable operators to clean reusable plastic cups easily, hygienically and effectively.  The new system can be used with any of Winterhalter’s UC undercounter and PT passthrough dishwashers and glass washers, allowing for plastic cups to be cleaned in less than two minutes. It involves three main elements: a special rack, a new wash program and plastic-specific chemicals.  

Cups are placed in a specially designed rack which features a locking bracket.  This keeps them in place during the cycle, stopping the water jets from flipping them over. Once the rack is loaded, operators select the new wash program, which has water temperature and pressure settings carefully optimised to clean and dry plastic.  The new settings that make this possible can either be programmed by a Winterhalter engineer, or downloaded via the Connected Wash and Pay Per Wash online services.

Winterhalter’s newly developed cleaning chemicals are the final part of the system.  They have been formulated to not only deliver outstanding results but also reduce residual moisture, to help with drying plastic. The new chemicals are so effective that cups can be stacked for storage immediately.

The racks are available in two sizes, a 400x400mm one designed for the undercounter UC-S that can hold sixteen cups, and a 500x500mm version for UC-M, UC-L and PT passthrough units that holds twenty five. Maximum cup height is 180mm in both. An insert designed to hold reusable lids is also available, as well as a small insert for five cups that is compatible with standard racks.