To choose the right dishwasher, you need to consider a large number of factors. Brand reliability, capacity, safety, economy – these are only some of the parameters that affect the convenience and quality of washing. We have prepared a selection of useful tips, which take into account the most important factors and pitfalls of dishwashers. Thanks to them, you will know what dishwasher is best for your home.
Size and capacity
What size dishwasher is right for small, standard and large kitchens?
It is the size that you need to pay attention to first of all. Today you can find dishwashers with capacity from 4 to 15 sets of dishes. On the capacity should not be economized. If the area of your kitchen allows you to place a full-size or at least narrow model, it is better to give preference to it. The difference is enormous, so let’s consider all types of dishwashers by size:
Full-size models with a width of 60 cm are created especially for large families. Their capacity varies from 12 to 15 sets of dishes. They are convenient and functional. The range of full-size dishwashers is pleasantly diverse. The only disadvantage – they are not suitable for small kitchens.
Narrow dishwashers with a width of 45 cm differ from full-size ones in width and capacity. On average, you can load from 8 to 10 sets in them. This number is quite enough for a family of 3-4 people. In general, a narrow 45 cm dishwasher is the ideal option for a standard and even small kitchen.
Compact dishwashers, as a rule, become indispensable helpers in smart apartments, cottages or just small kitchens. If you want such a machine can be put in any room, because it takes very little space. But the capacity she has appropriate – no more than 6 sets. Plus, if you listen to the advice of experts, the price-quality ratio of such models is not at its best.
Quality of Washing
What parameters of the dishwasher affect the quality of washing?
One of the most important and complex factors, because it is impossible to check the quality of a dishwasher before buying the machine. Customer reviews and expert advice will show only part of the truth about the chosen model. To examine the quality of the sink in detail, we recommend to pay attention to a number of factors:
The class of the sink is specified in the specifications for each dishwasher. It is marked with letters from A to C. Choose models with class A only. It indicates a high quality of washing.
The sprinklers are where the dishwasher gets its water. If the sprinklers are few or poorly positioned, then in some parts of the basket the dishes will be poorly washed. The number of sprinklers depends on the size of the dishwasher. In narrow and full-size machines there should be at least two – top and bottom. Then the dishes will be washed evenly in different parts of the basket. In general, the more sprinklers the machine has, the better the quality of washing.
It is desirable that the dishwasher is combined with different detergents. That way you can choose the best value for money tablet or powder. And so you do not have to be limited in the chemistry you use.
Functionality is important for ease of use. If you often have to wash heavily soiled dishes, then the machine must have an intensive mode. In some expensive models, such as Bosch, there is a separate option Intensive Zone, which allows you to quickly process dishes with dried-up grease.
And don’t forget that washing quality also depends on how properly the dishes are stacked in the basket. In the instructions to the dishwasher there should be a diagram of stacking, which should always be studied before turning it on. Otherwise, the quality of washing will decrease significantly.
What is the difference between drying in budget and expensive dishwashers?
As with washers, drying quality is indicated by a letter grade: A, B, C. But even an A rating would not guarantee perfect drying. Here, the cost of the dishwasher plays an important role. As a rule, the expensive models use a different drying principle, which shows a better effect.
In budget machines and copies from the middle segment, condensation drying is most often provided. Be prepared that with this technology the dishes will not be dried to the end. The exception is the models that have a door opener function. After the end of washing, the door automatically opens, thanks to which the dishes are ventilated and dried to the end.
Intense or turbo drying is a more reliable option. The dishes are dried with hot air using a special fan. This type of drying is considered more costly compared to condensation drying. But due to its good results it is worth overpaying for it.
Type of installation
What type of installation is best suited for your kitchen?
The type of installation determines where and how you can put your dishwasher. One of the key considerations when choosing a dishwasher, because without the right one, it can get in the way or not fit at all. Dishwashers come in 4 types according to the type of mounting:
Freestanding options are most suitable for spacious or medium-sized kitchens. They come in widths of 45 and 60 cm. Such a dishwasher can be placed anywhere, like a washing machine. It is very convenient, but unlike other types, the freestanding version takes extra space in the kitchen.
Fully built-in machines are hidden under the kitchen unit. And the control panel is located in the upper end of the door. If desired, such a dishwasher can fit into a small kitchen. A big advantage of built-in machines is that they work a little quieter than conventional ones. This is due to the fact that the kitchen furniture slightly muffles vibration.
Partially built-in differs from fully built-in by the location of the control panel. It is not inside, but on the front of the door. Many users consider this a better solution. That is why partially built-in dishwashers are becoming more and more popular.
Tabletop dishwashers are created specifically for small kitchens, smart apartments and cottages. The choice of such a helper is rather a need to save space. Apart from modest dimensions, tabletop dishwashers have no advantages.
In general, there are no functional differences between the machines with different type of installation. When choosing the appropriate method of installation, it is necessary to be guided by the area and the interior of the kitchen.
What functions are considered the most useful?
Does a large set of options really justify the high cost of the dishwasher? In general, additional features are a big plus for the machine. But not all of them are really important for washing. Let’s start with the basic options that users have found very useful in the home.
A decent dishwasher should have at least 5 standard modes. These include the usual program for everyday washing, intensive mode for heavily soiled dishes, delicate, express washing and economy mode for lightly soiled dishes. The presence of half-load, pre-soak and rinse would be a big plus. As for automatic programs, they are usually provided for in more expensive models. There is no particular point in overpaying for them.
Among the additional options we should mention a timer with delay. It allows you to program the inclusion of a dishwasher for a certain time. Salt and rinse aid indicators, an audible signal of completion are considered standard.
And now let’s list a few options, for which it is really not sorry to overpay. These are the load sensor, water purity sensor, intensive wash zone and beam-lighting on the floor. Self-cleaning filters are also found in deluxe models, which extends the life of the dishwasher. If you have a young child, then we recommend paying attention to models with the Hygiene Plus option. It is a mode with a higher wash temperature, allowing you to additionally disinfect your dishes.
What’s the most important thing in a dishwasher basket?
In some dishwashers, the stated capacity does not match the actual capacity. This is usually due to the unfortunate layout of the basket and compartments. On average, a standard dishwasher has two baskets for plates, a separate tray for cutlery and a holder for glasses. In more expensive and newer models, a different layout is often found. It consists of three baskets. The lower one is for plates, the middle one for cups, and the upper one for cutlery. Both layouts are considered convenient. The main thing is that the baskets are adjustable in height.
When buying a dishwasher for your home, we recommend paying special attention to the plate holders. The ideal is when they can be removed and stowed away. This allows you to free up additional space in the machine and put there large pans or trays. A nice bonus will be the internal lighting of the basket. This technical nuance helps when loading and sorting dishes. Therefore, there is no point in saving on it.
What are the safety systems of dishwashers?
Often users ignore this parameter, placing the main emphasis on the capacity and functionality of the dishwasher. Nevertheless, a weak safety system can have unpleasant consequences: water leaks and unscheduled repairs, at your own expense or that of your neighbors.
Most dishwashers are equipped with a leak protection system. It can be full or partial. In the first case, the machine is equipped with special sensors in the tray and the hose, which allows you to immediately cut off the water in case of failure. With partial protection, there is a sensor only in the pan, which means that the water is only shut off inside the machine, while the hose and the space outside the dishwasher remain unprotected. That is why it is better not to economize on leak protection – it is desirable to have a complete one.
Before buying a dishwasher, we recommend that you carefully study the reviews and expert advice about the chosen model. It is important that it has a strong drain system and a quality water supply hose. Unfortunately, it is difficult to assess the reliability of these parts during the inspection, it is tested only by time. More often poor-quality components are found in dishwashers from the budget segment.
If you have small children, who have already entered a period of widespread curiosity and desire to climb everywhere, then it is worth choosing a dishwasher with one more safety option. This is the optional “Childproofing” feature. It allows you to lock the control panel and door so that your child does not mess up the settings during the washing process.
Water and electricity consumption
How do I estimate the electricity and water consumption of my dishwasher?
In the specifications of dishwashers, always pay attention to the energy consumption class. It is indicated by symbols A++, A+, A, B, C, D. The higher the class, the less electricity the machine consumes. In models from the budget and medium segment, the power consumption class usually does not exceed the level of A. Luxury models are much more economical and have class A+ and A++.
Another characteristic that indicates the consumption – power consumption per cycle. It will allow you to calculate exactly how much electricity is used for one standard sink. A similar parameter is given for water consumption.
For full-size dishwashers, water consumption is normal up to 13-15 liters. And for compact models – up to 8-9.
Controls and noise level
What type of control and noise level is considered optimal?
Often users do not pay attention to these parameters, considering them not important enough. Because of which, they encounter unpleasant consequences already in the process of work. So, the noise level of dishwashers ranges from 38 to 55 dB. It is desirable that it does not exceed 46 dB. Then the machine will not make much noise. A big plus if the dishwasher has a night washing mode or it is equipped with an inverter motor. Then the quiet operation is guaranteed.
As for control, it can be mechanical or touch screen, with or without display. In general, the usual menu with buttons and indicators is enough for convenience. Touch control and display, as a rule, are provided in models of the middle and expensive segments. They are more modern, but there is no particular point in overpaying for them. In addition, with the touch screen type, you are more likely to encounter system errors. Perhaps a more important role is played by the presence of backlighting in the basket and a beam indicator on the floor. Such options are found mostly in expensive models, but for them it is really not a pity to pay extra.