Best Dishwasher Reviews of 2016
If you are here, then you are looking for the best dishwasher. The good news is that you are in the right place. My name is James and I review all dishwashers you can now find on the market. I have extensive experience working as a quality assurance manager for more than 15 years now.
In this time I’ve accumulated valuable knowledge on most mainstream kitchen appliances so rest assured, I can offer an accurate description on the quality of a particular dishwashers product.
Also, you should know form the start that we are not affiliated to any of the dishwashers brads so we have no interest in promoting one or the other.
I started this blog as a passion and my goal is to transform it into a community where people will share honest opinion on dishwashers so that we can all learn and we can all benefit from the knowledge gathered here
BEST DISHWASHER BUYING GUIDE
There are a few varieties of dishwashers. The most common are freestanding dishwashers that are 60cm wide, though there are also slimline dishwashers that are just 45cm wide that are good for small flats. Integrated dishwashers come in similar sizes, but are designed to blend in with your kitchen cabinetry. There also compact dishwashers that sit on the tabletop like a microwave, which are useful if you don’t have space for anything bigger.
Each type gives you a little flexibility depending on your needs, but here are a few more things worth knowing about before buying a new dishwasher.
Dishwasher capacity is measured by place setting a single place setting consists of ten items of various sizes. A 60cm freestanding dishwasher typically takes 11 to 15 place settings. Slimline dishwashers typically hold 8 to 10 place settings and compact dishwashers around 8 to 10 place settings.
Dishwasher Adjustable racks
Another consideration is plate size. Not all dishwashers can take the largest plates, but some have adjustable racks to accommodate plates as big as 31.5cm in diameter. Check the maximum size a machine can take against your largest plates before buying.
Dishwasher Fold down prongs
This is a great feature to have. Fold down prongs make it much easier to load large pots and pans when you don’t have any plates to clean. Cheaper machines tend not to have them, but if you can afford one that does, then you won’t regret it.
Dishwasher Cutlery tray
Another useful feature is a dishwasher with a cutlery tray. This is dedicated tray at the top of the machine that means you have more space for pots and plates in the main part of the machine.
Dishwasher How It All Works
With so many options out there, having a full understanding of the key considerations in our dishwasher reviews enables you to make an informed purchasing decision and get the dishwasher that best suits your needs and lifestyle.
One of the vital considerations is how energy efficient the dishwasher is. That concept refers to how much water and energy the appliance consumes. For consumers who want to save money and do their bit to help save the planet, the best dishwashers are those that are ENERGY STAR qualified. While older models may consume vast amounts of energy and use excessive amounts of water, good quality modern models do not. In fact, the study conducted by the Energy Saving Trust shows that, on average, an energy-efficient dishwasher set on an eco-cycle uses only a third of the water you use when washing up in a sink. It also consumes less energy, as you are heating a comparatively small amount of water when running a dishwasher than when you must heat a full tank of water to manually wash up. When making your decision, be sure to look at the estimated yearly running costs too, as this gives you a good idea of how much the machine will cost and save you every year.
Cleaning options have a significant impact on how well-suited a particular dishwasher is to your kitchen. The more cycles to choose from, the greater control you have over your appliance. Models with specific wash zones provide a targeted area for heavily soiled kitchenware with a cycle designed to remove tough debris particles. Some dishwashers have a small-load option or a top-rack only setting, allowing you to run a shorter cycle that targets the top rack when you need to wash a small load.
Dishwashers that meet National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) standards ensure your pots and pans are hygienically clean, providing you keep the appliance in good working order. An eco-friendly wash cycle provides an economic option that uses less water and less energy, as does a quick cycle, which is suitable for thoroughly cleaning lightly soiled loads. If you have a lot of fine dinnerware, such as bone china, a dishwasher with a delicate cycle is a must. Choosing a model with a steam cycle is a good option for heavily soiled items. The presence of a rinse-only cycle allows you to lightly rinse dishes if you don’t plan on running a full cycle immediately.
Drying choices include the use of a heating element, which dries items quickly but consumes more power. An air-dry option allows dishes to dry naturally, which lowers energy consumption. Fan drying works in tandem with heat and air-dry cycles to speed up the drying process and, when used with a heated dry option, shortens the cycles, lowering power usage.
In our dishwasher reviews, load flexibility refers to the ease of use and flexibility of each model. The number of place settings is a key consideration, as it essentially determines how frequently you run your dishwasher and, if you have a large family, a small place setting capacity may not provide enough space to load a full quota of dinnerware and kitchenware after a single meal. Some full-sized dishwashers hold up to 16 place settings, whereas slimline dishwashers, tabletop or apartment-sized dishwashers can hold as few as four. The majority of dishwashers in our review have two racks, but some have a third rack, primarily for silverware and cutlery, freeing up more space on other racks to help you to make the most of the available interior space. Adjustable racks and folding tines make the dishwasher much more flexible and versatile, as you can essentially alter the position of the racks and tines to accommodate large, bulky or odd-shaped items.
Sound Level & Design
The design and dimensions of a dishwasher should have a major influence on your purchasing decision. How much noise it makes during a cycle is particularly important if you want to run it overnight when energy tariffs are typically cheaper. The quietest dishwashers peak at 40 decibels, while the noisiest reach 50. The more spray arms a dishwasher has, the more cleaning potential it has, as more spray arms means better water and detergent coverage. Our top rated dishwashers have three arms, while other noteworthy models in the lineup have two. All dishwashers have filters. However, choosing one with a self-cleaning model reduces the amount of maintenance the appliance requires.
The type of interior is an important consideration, as it impacts how noisy the appliance is during a cycle, the inner temperature and the strength of the interior. Models with a stainless-steel dishwasher tub are a better choice than plastic, as they can withstand higher temperatures without the risk of warping, and they retain heat better, making them more energy efficient. Additionally, where noise is a factor, stainless-steel dishwasher models are quieter.
Dishwashers have either a recessed handle or a bar-style handle. Bar handles offer easy access, but they stick out, which isn’t ideal where space is at a premium. Recessed handles aren’t quite as convenient but they don’t stick out, making them a better option for small kitchens and, because they don’t have a protruding bar, they provide a cleaner, sleeker appearance.
Overall size plays a key role in your purchasing decision. You need to accurately measure the available space, taking into account height, width and depth to ensure you choose a model that fits neatly into the allotted space.
While the color or finish of the dishwasher isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker, if you want an appliance that complements the rest of your appliances and the style of your kitchen, it’s something that you can consider. Options in our top rated dishwasher lineup include black, white, slate and brushed or bright stainless steel.
Warranty & Support
When you make a large purchase like a dishwasher, it’s important you understand the warranty and support terms. While new appliances should require very little repair and maintenance, there’s always the chance that something will go wrong. While some models have a standard warranty that covers everything, many have different warranties on different elements, including a labor warranty that covers labor costs during its lifetime, a part warranty, a rack and electronic warranty, and a tub and door liner warranty. Whether the warranty is a general one or covers individual parts and components, the longer it lasts, the better.
Good customer support is crucial as, if something goes wrong, you will need help troubleshooting or product-related advice. This means the manufacturer should be your first port of call. While you can contact many manufacturers via phone and email, others also offer a live-chat service.
How You Pay
While the dishwasher itself is a one-off purchase, there are a number of ongoing running costs, and it’s vital to take these into account. Among the most obvious is the yearly energy cost, which should be a key influencer in your decision-making process. The lower the average yearly running cost the better, as it means you’ll pay less and lower your energy consumption levels.
Dishwashing detergent is a crucial ongoing cost. Prices, quality and effectiveness all vary widely. Unless you purchase detergent with rinse aid already in it, you’ll need to buy this separately to ensure your items are rinsed properly and don’t have a dull finish.
To get scale- and film-free kitchenware from your dishwasher, you need dishwasher salt. This particular type of crystalline sodium chloride softens water and boosts the efficiency of a dishwasher‘s built-in water softener to prevent limescale buildup on your washed items. It also helps to provide a streak-free finish on your items without watermarks or spotting.
Outside of the warranty, you may also incur maintenance and repair costs. You can potentially reduce these costs by making sure the appliance is insured.
HOW WE TEST DISHWASHERS
Every dishwasher is plumbed and run in first before we begin our testing. We fill each dishwasher with a typical domestic load of pots and plates, including wine glasses and plastics.
We test the standard, main wash cycle and the Eco cycle on all machines, measuring the amount of water used, power used, time to completion and the noise during the fill and washing stages.
We also have three standard washing tests:
Dirty wine glass
This test consists of dried-on wine in the bottom of a wine glass. We look for perfect cleaning, a good shine and no streaks. We also look out for common drying problems, such as small pools of water in the base of the glass.
Dried-on wheat cereal
Always a favourite, this test consists of a bowl with dried-on wheat cereal that’s been left for 24 hours. It needs to be cleaned perfectly to achieve a good score.
This is our toughest test. In fact it’s so tough that no machine has produced perfect results yet. We leave egg cooked in the microwave in a Pyrex bowl to dry for 24 hours, and we always place this item in the best possible place to get ideal results. Tough though it may be, the extent of the cleaning gives us a great insight into how well machines perform overall.
What are the different types of dishwashers?
- Built-in dishwashers – you can choose a compact type or a drawer type
- Portable or countertop dishwashers
- Tall tub dishwashers
- Standard dishwashers
- Compact dishwashers
What are the best brands of dishwashers?
Most manufacturers that produce dishwashers are actually well established brands that have years of experience in the kitchen appliances area so there is not much gossip here.
I will list here the best brands of dishwashers and the recommended model for each. In time I will have published reviews for each and link to them.
- Bosh Dishwashers – SHP65T55UC 500 24″ Stainless Steel Fully Integrated Dishwasher – Energy Star
- LG Dishwashers– LDF8764ST Fully Integrated Dishwasher, Stainless Steel
- SPT Dishwashers – Countertop Dishwasher
- EdgeStar Dishwashers – Energy Star 18″ Built-In Dishwasher – Stainless Steel
- GE Dishwashers – GDF540HMFES 24″ Slate Full Console Dishwasher – Energy Star
- Avanti Dishwashers – DWE1801B Built-In Dishwasher
- Koldfront Dishwashers – 6 Place Setting Portable Countertop Dishwasher
- Kitchenaid Dishwashers – KDTE404DSS 24” 6-Cycle/6-Option Dishwasher
- Miele Dishwashers – Futura Classic Series G4205SS Dishwasher – Stainless Steel
- Frigidaire Dishwashers – FFBD1821MS 18″ Built-In Dishwasher with Stainless Steel Interior and Delay Start
- Amana Dishwashers – ADB1400PYS, Tall Tub Dishwasher, Stainless
- Fisher Paykel Dishwashers – DD24SCX7 DishDrawer 24″ Stainless Steel Semi-Integrated Dishwasher
- Whirlpool Dishwashers – WDF310PAAW 24″ White Full Console Dishwasher – Energy Star
- ECOAP Dishwashers – SB 80 Equator Fullsized Built-In Dishwasher, Silver
- Electrolux Dishwashers – EI24ID30QS Built-In Dishwasher, 24-Inch, Stainless Steel
- Samsung Dishwashers – DMT400RH 23-7/8″ Wide Built-In Energy Star Dishwasher with 4 Wash Cycles, 6 Layer Door In, White
So, here you go, these are the big players and their Dishwashers top models. Between them there are some that perform much better than the other. I will review them all on this website so that you can make an informed decision.
Dishwasher installation, designs and finishes
Installing a dishwasher can be easy or can require help from a professional. The portable models can be installed easily and require no technical skills, though the fully integrated (build in) ones could pose some problems.
We all know that design is important, and not only for the looks but also it plays an important role in the functionality of a dishwasher.
Before considering the build in models you need to take a closer look at the colors and overall aspect of your current kitchen furniture and design to see that if fits well. For the countertop models, among of the best lookers are the stainless steel and bisque ones, but you can easily find silver, white and black ones.
Be careful if you go for the stainless steel as it easily attracts fingerprints.
I usually go for the models that have a hidden control panel. This is usually positioned on the top edge of the door. It makes for a more clean and modern look overall.
The interior finishes and handles are usually made either of stainless steel or plastic, I usually recommend pocket style handle but recessed and bar handles are available across the range.