Plunger coffee in Australia is not as popular as it once was, however,it is still an easy brewing method that can achieve great results if done correctly.
Different coffees will have their own particular brewing temperature. As a rule of thumb - the lighter the roast, the cooler the water. Using boiling water on coffee will scald it, the flavours will not be as rich or complex and the coffee will taste thin. If you have been using boiling water on the coffee, try the steps listed above and slowly decrease the temperature each time you make a coffee until you find the optimal temperature. The type of coffee you use will determine the brewing temperature. The darker roasts can be brewed at higher temperature, this is approximately 88C. The lighter roasts at much cooler temperatures and very light roasts at temperatures of 75C.
I haven't found a plunger yet I can't put in the dishwasher. Prior to placing the plunger part in the dishwasher - loosen the mesh part or the base and rinse to remove any grinds. Tighten the plunger part after it has been through the dishwasher. The dishwasher will keep the plunger extremely clean and not allow any build-up of oils. If hand washing take the base apart and give it a good scrub, make sure it's rinsed well to remove all traces of detergent.