Dishwasher Buying Guide

dishwashersguide tipsMy dishwasher is my favorite appliance in my kitchen. I just load up the dirty dishes, put in the detergent and off it goes – clean dishes in an hour. The convenience of this appliance rivals no other. Easy to use and keeps my kitchen clutter free – what more can I ask for?

Dishwashers today do an excellent job of cleaning everything from your best crystal to stuck-on greasy pans. I simply love not having to manually do dishes.

But, you might be asking:

Which dishwasher is the best one for my particular needs?

– so I’ll help : this is the guide to help you find your dream dishwasher 🙂

There are a lot of dishwashing choices out there to choose from and buying one can be quite the project. I’ve worked in the appliance industry for more than last 10 years and have extensive knowledge of kitchen appliances. To make your search for a new dishwasher a fun and exciting adventure I have created a dishwasher buying guide for you.

Did you know that dishwashers today are 95 percent more energy-efficient than in 1972? They also use 4 to 8 gallons of water compared to and average of 17 gallons if you wash dishes by hand.

Make sure you have a machine that is not costing you more to run than it would cost to buy a new one!

As of January 2012, for dishwashers to be considered energy efficient and meet the federal EPA’s energy Star rating, dishwashers must use 27 percent less water and 9 percent less electricity.

What are the first things to look for?

Energy Star 18 inches Built-In Dishwasher - Baskets and TraysConvenience is very important.

Look for adjustable racks and baskets with lots of silverware slots. Some dishwashers have fold down tines that allow for larger or odd-shaped dishes.

Make sure you think about how you clean dishes. Do you pre-rinse or do you put all dishes in as is? If you pre-rinse skip the dishwashers that have power-scrubbing cycles. They increase the cost of the machine and if you are doing the work why pay for it?

If noise is a concern for you, buy a machine that has a manual-clean filter. They are much quieter than self-cleaning filters. Models with the manual-cleaning filter are becoming much easier to find.

Watch the type of controls and where they are located. I still prefer to see the controls on the front of the dishwasher.

How much space do you have?

I find that this is something that is often forgotten. Before you go out shopping make sure to double measure your space. Keep in mind if you have installed new flooring or put in new counter tops. These renovations could leave you with less space that the conventional dishwasher needs. Always check your available space and ask the salesman the full height.dishwasher dimensions space required

Which colors and styles better match your kitchen’s design?

Dishwashers are available in a wide range of finishes to better fit to your kitchen’s overall design. You can buy high end machines that come with a panel that matches kitchen’s cabinets. These can be pretty pricey but do give your kitchen a uniform look. Most finishes include: White, Black, Bisque and Stainless Steel.

EdgeStar Energy Star dishwasher

How about warranty and customer support?

Warranty and support services are very important to consider whenever buying a major appliance. Make certain your new appliance comes with a full warranty – one less thing to worry about if your machine has an issue. You would want to make sure the manufacturer will be there for you if needed. The best warranties for dishwashers have one year labor coverage, two years fro parts, five years for racks and electronics, and lifetime for the tub and door.

Here are some dishwashers I’ve found to be overall good investments. Following are two high-end dishwashers and two cost-effective ones.

KitchenAid Architect Series II

This dishwasher is drop-a-pin-quiet and is energy efficient. I really like that it has a third rack for long or bulky utensils. This dishwasher holds up to 16 place settings within the three racks. It features six wash cycles that include one hour wash, heavy duty, normal, light, ProWash and rinse.

Additional settings include: sanitize, clean, delay start, top rack only, high temperature and dry. The cleaning is done by two spray arms. One is located on the bottom and the other on the underside of the top rack. There are also jets that spray down from the top.

KitchenAid Architect Series II
KitchenAid Architect Series II
KitchenAid Architect Series II - front panel
KitchenAid Architect Series II – front panel

Samsung DW80F800

Samsung has some of the best kitchen appliances available on the market even though they may be known best for televisions an other electronics. Their dishwashers are energy efficient and they have Energy Star Rating.

You can put a smaller load of dishes on the bottom rack so that the dishwasher will use less water. The Samsung dishwasher can hold up to 15 place settings. It has three spray arms that clean and sanitize your dishes and rotating jets on the bottom of the machine.

Six wash cycles include normal, heavy, delicate for your fine china, quick wash, and a pots/pans cycle. Samsung also offers very good warranty.

Samsung DW80F800 - front panel
Samsung DW80F800 – front panel
Samsung DW80F800
Samsung DW80F800

Kenmore Built-in Dishwasher

This stainless steal dishwasher features PowerWave Spray Arms. The display also shows remaining time until the current cycle is completed.

Although it has only three wash options, including sanitizing, it covers all needs of a medium sized family.

Kenmore Built-in Dishwasher - front panel
Kenmore Built-in Dishwasher – front panel
Kenmore Built-in Dishwasher
Kenmore Built-in Dishwasher

Maytag MDB4949SDM

The ten-year limited parts warranty along with the Sears protection agreements will suffice. You’ll have full coverage for parts and labor, unlimited service calls, 100 percent replacement guarantee, deliver and installation included, and annual maintenance.

This coverage is available for three or five years. The display tracks the wash cycle so you know when your dishes will be done. Two spinning jet blades clean even your dirtiest dishes and no pre-wash is needed. Two racks are double coated with DuraGuard nylon.

There you go – my reviews for two high end dishwashers and two affordable dishwashers. Of course, there are many in between but these give you an idea of what to look for in any price range.

Maytag MDB4949SDM - front panel
Maytag MDB4949SDM – front panel
Maytag MDB4949SDM
Maytag MDB4949SDM

Your turn

Ok, hope this helped. 🙂

Please use the comment section below to share your feedback and tips!

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