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The Best Dishwashers

Which Brand of Dishwasher is the Best?

Most of us don't think too much about our dishwasher. We load the dishes, it cleans, we empty. But when the dishes aren't coming out as clean as they should, it's taking more rinsing to get all the food off, you're drying your dishes by hand because the machine doesn't, or if the coating on the tines is chipping off, you might start thinking about replacing your appliance for one that holds up and maybe has some nice features that you deserve.

Did you know there are three types of dishwashers? There's built-in, countertop, and drawer. Built-in dishwashers are the traditional dishwashers most of us have had in our homes. They are full-sized or even narrow and apartment-sized, and are slid in below the counter. Counter-top dishwashers can be found in Europe and are just that - they are small and fit on the counter. The drawer models are shallow and fit below the counter. Because they are the most common type, we will look at only the built-in models.

Tuesday, May 24th

2022 Dishwasher Reviews

Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award Bosch Review 5 Star Rating

Bosch

5 Star Rating
  • Scans and senses items for caked-on dirt
  • Sensors for correct drying time
  • Known for quietness
  • No exposed heating element to burn fallen plastics
Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

Bosch has thought of it all. First, they realize you want a dishwasher that does its job. It cleans without you having to pre-rinse or scrub, and it dries completely so you don't have to. When you don't have to do all the work the appliance is supposed to, you have more time to relax reading a book or watching TV. And if your dishwasher is running at the same time, with a Bosch, you won't have to hear the sloshing of the water in the background - you can relax in peace, especially if you have an open-concept floor plan.

Bosch's beginnings

Bosch was founded in 1886 in Stuttgart, Germany. Their first dishwasher was produced in 1964, and it's believed that in 1991, the US received their first Bosch dishwasher. Once the first US Bosch dishwasher factory was opened in North Carolina in 1997, the popularity grew immensely. Soon, environmental considerations, soil sensors and non-heating drying cycles became popular features with other brands and Bosch didn't seem so unusual for having done that. Still, Bosch has remained one of the top, innovative dishwasher brands for over the past two decades.

Good quality

You don't get less quality for paying less money. Whether you purchase your 100 Series or 800 Series Bosch dishwasher, you'll get excellent quality washing and drying and it will even clean the tough stains. They're fast, quiet, and have a spacious interior. These dishwashers are known to last a long time, so replacing one earlier than expected shouldn't be an issue like it might with other brands.

Included features

All of the Bosch series include the PrecisionWash System, which uses sensors to scan the progress of the dishes throughout the cycle. Powerful spray arms target each item so you can be assured they'll be clean. The PureDry System is an energy-efficient drying mechanism that doesn't use an exposed heating element (so any falling plastics won't fall and melt like with other dishwashers) or pull in outside air, with the goal of completely drying your dishes.

Ascenta Series

With the more basic Ascenta series, you still get very good features included at a reasonable price. Ascenta's noise level is at 50 decibels (dBA), and the average of standard dishwashers is 52 dBA, so it's slightly quieter than most. It comes with the standard two racks, where the upper rack is manually adjustable. The inside is stainless steel, the controls are push-button, and there's a 24/7 overflow protection.

The 100 Series

The quietness of the 100 Series is similar to that of the Ascenta Series, at 48-50 decibels, which again is pretty normal for standard dishwashers. They add a top third rack to line up your silverware, place plastic lids or include oddly-shaped utensils. Another added feature is the InfoLight. And similar to the Ascenta line, the middle rack is adjustable, there's 24/7 overflow protection, stainless steel interior, and push-button control.

The 300 Series

Added to the features of the previous series, the 300 Series boasts 44 decibels of noise, which is significantly quieter than the national average of standard dishwashers' 52 decibels. The base and interior are of stainless steel, there's a third rack, adjustable middle rack, push-button controls, InfoLight, and added FlexSpace Tines on the lower rack. The movable tines will help you personalize spacing for placing your larger items on that bottom rack. The 24/7 water stop is upgraded to their 24/7 AquaStop.

The 500 Series

Their quietness remains at 44 decibels, has the third rack, adjustable middle rack, 24/7 AquaStop, push-button controls, InfoLight, FlexSpace lower rack, and adds the EasyGlide upper rack system so your delicate glassware rack will slide in and out smoothly, without jostling them. This series also adds AutoAir drying, sensing the dryness of your dinnerware to make sure it's quite dry without overdrying.

The 800 Series

This series has the most upgraded drying system called CrystalDry, is the quietest at 42 decibels, has all the features above, and adds touch control (vs push-button).

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Bosch is quiet

It's wonderful to finally relax after a long day and not hear the slosh, slosh, sloshing of the dishwasher to distract you. Just peace and quiet is what you'll hear from Bosch. Even with the entry-level models, they are quieter than the national average, and it just gets better from there.

Cost

  • Ascenta Series: $550 - $650
  • 100 Series: $650 - $850
  • 300 Series: $850 - $1,050
  • 500 Series: $1,050
  • 800 Series: $1,050 - $1,550
  • Benchmark Series: $1,649 - $2,249

Nothing burning here

Have you ever smelled burnt plastic for days because a flimsy piece of plastic fell and got stuck onto the heating element? Not with Bosch. The heating element is hidden, so even if something were to fall, it wouldn't melt.

Stainless steel interior included

The insulated stainless tub looks good, makes the appliance quieter than those with a plastic tub, and is expected to last longer than a plastic interior because a stainless tub doesn't rust as easily. Stainless tubs are included in all of Bosch's models.

Adjustable rack

The traditional top rack is manually adjustable. If you have tall glassware, move the rack lower to make room. If your cookware on the bottom is bigger, raise the top rack. Got both tall glassware as well as big cookware? No problem. Just adjust one side taller and keep one side shorter.

Our favorite Bosch model

Our favorite Bosch is the SHX878ZD5N, in the 800 Series. It features a bar handle, six wash cycles, holds a whopping 16 place settings, is Energy Star Certified, has a floor light to let you know the status of the cycles since it's so quiet, an extra scrub option, sanitizing option, and is quite quiet.

Old issue

Some reviews from a few years ago complained about dirty water gathering in the basin. This may be why Bosch has added a form of 24/7 overflow protection to each dishwasher. Recent reviews have very few complaints, especially of this sort.

Warranty

The Bosch dishwasher has a limited, one-year warranty that covers the entire appliance, parts, and labor. The microprocessor's parts are warrantied from the second to the fifth year, and same with the racks and their parts. There's also a limited, lifetime warranty on rust-through on the parts of the inner tub liner. Be sure to read the fine print for the product you purchase.

Best in class

Bosch's dishwashers had been known to be luxury appliances, expensive and therefore accessible to only those who could afford them. But now that they are accessible to more people, just about anyone can someday have one. When you get a new dishwasher, your neighbor might smile and ask, "Is it a Bosch?" No other brand seems to get that conversational comparison. If you do say you got a Bosch, they're excited to know if it's as wonderful as everyone says. With very good to excellent dishwashers at all price levels, we recommend Bosch with no hesitation.

Miele Review 4.5 Star Rating

Miele

4.5 Star Rating
  • Very quiet
  • Three wash arms
  • Smart capabilities
  • Auto-measures detergent

Miele is a European company that started out in 1899 with eleven employees and minimal equipment. Their one engineer and one businessman started by making cream separators. Only four short years later, they made Model A washing machines which were innovative in their design, and they kept working to improve an already excellent product. In 1912, they made motorcars, but kept making and innovating washing machines. As you can see, Miele has been doing high-quality appliance innovations for over 100 years.

Unique drying system

Outside air enters the system, steam is attracted to the colder side, and then dissipates as water. The two highest models allow two ports for even faster drying. All but the lowest model will allow the door to pop open at the end of this drying cycle encouraging the steam to escape, The hot, steamy air gets out and it's not trapped in the humid tub for a longer drying time.

Leak protection

Most dishwashers today have some sort of leak protection, to prevent water from leaking from the appliance all over the floor, causing not only a mess, but damage to the floor. Miele is no exception.

Camouflage?

The dishwasher fits flush with the cabinets so you don't notice a protruding appliance. In addition, many are panel-ready, meaning you can talk with your kitchen designer or cabinet supplier and get a cabinet-door-like panel to place over the front of the appliance, making the appliance virtually indistinguishable from your cabinetry.

Super quiet

No noisy models here. The "loudest" Miele is at 44 decibels, when the average, standard dishwasher is at 52 decibels. Miele's noise levels go from quiet to even more quiet at 38 decibels - that of a refrigerator hum. The industry states that quiet dishwashers' levels are 44 decibels, so all Miele's are at the quiet level or more.

Three racks + wash arms

It's nice to line up your silverware on the top, third rack of your dishwasher, knowing that none of the tines touch and your spoons won't be "spooning," with little to no space between them for water to clean them. All models include this feature - Miele doesn't include a silverware basket - allowing more room for dishes on the bottom rack. Better Miele models' third rack has sections that slide side-to-side, for more stemware to fit. The more upgraded models have this sliding feature and also have other 3D features to fit those hard-to-place utensils or glassware. And, even the third rack has its own wash arm to get special cleaning attention.

They're smart

The top two series allow you to control your appliance from your smart device. You can turn the machine on or off, and you can know which cycle it's in, change cycles, and see the time remaining as well. Remember, it's pretty quiet, and you may not hear the difference between the washing and drying cycles, so receiving wash cycle information via your smart device can be quite helpful.

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Look Ma, no handle!

The top series is super sleek - so much so that there's no bar handle or pocket handle at all. Knock twice, and the door opens.

Cost

  • From $1,100 to $2,800

Auto-measures the detergent

Place up to 20 loads' worth of detergent into the reservoir, and the dishwasher will know how much to dispense each time. So it's okay if you forgot the detergent - Miele won't forget. Customers say they like this feature, not only for the convenience, but because the right amount of detergent gets dispensed at the right time, allowing for much cleaner dishes.

Our favorite Miele

The G5056VISFP is a good, lower-end model, front pocket handle, 44 decibels, and has a QuickIntenseWash feature, so a load can be completely finished in 58 minutes. At a little over $1,000, that's a mid-level model for many makers, but it's the entry level for Miele. In general, upgraded features with other brands are considered standard with Miele.

Where can you find them?

If you go to your local appliance store, you more than likely won't see Miele on display. You might be able to order one from them, but you might not see it in person to open the door, open with the knock-knock feature, play with the 3D/sliding third rack, or look at the 20-load detergent dispenser. You can order Miele dishwashers online and through some appliance stores, so they are attainable, but you'll have to call around to see who not only sells them but also has them on display.

No returns?!

Miele documents to the seller that they sell premium products, and therefore, there are no returns. Depending on where you buy yours, however, you may have a retailer return policy to take advantage of if you need it.

Warranty

Miele states repeatedly on their warranty card that their products are of top quality and so are their parts. They assure the customer that parts will be available to the purchaser for five years. The card says that there is a limited warranty, but after hunting through their site to determine if they actually do warranty their product, the information is difficult to find. It seems the customer gets more assurance than warranty from Miele. Not sure if that's good or bad, but it seems to work for Miele and their typically satisfied customers.

Futuristic and fancy, but expensive

Miele has very good quality dishwashers with not only excellent and innovative cleaning and drying features, but unique and futuristic features as well. If you purchase a Miele, you may have the fanciest - and quietest - dishwasher on the block... but you might either have to search for it or buy it sight unseen. In addition, you'll pay for what you get. We believe that if a Miele dishwasher is within your budget, that's great. But if your wallet is nudging you to find a more affordable dishwasher with excellent features, you may want to look to our other very highly-rated dishwashers before making your final decision.

Thermador Review 4.5 Star Rating

Thermador

4.5 Star Rating
  • Floor light
  • Water softener
  • Third rack
  • Interior blue light

Thermador is a luxury brand that also carries the luxury price. They're still worth taking a look at as they have few complaints and offer unique features. Although their entry-level models have a heftier price tag, the quantity and quality of their included features makes even these models comparable to a mid-level or even high-level model of other brands, making the cost definitely worth it when all is considered.

Third rack standard

With Thermador dishwashers, even the entry level models have a top third rack included. Compare that with other brands' entry level options: it's either an add-on or not offered at all.

Star Speed

One Thermador feature we love is Star Speed, which uses hot water in cycles of 20 minutes. You can get great results in a shorter time, but this feature is available only in their Star Sapphire Series.

Water softener

You may notice spots on your dishes, glassware, or silverware after washing in your present dishwasher, and it might be embarrassing to use these pieces when company is at your house. A unique feature of Thermador is that some models include a water softener to offer spotless dishes every time, with no effort.

Floor light

Because their dishwashers are so quiet, Thermador adds a feature where a beam of light shining on the floor will let you know if the machine is running and it will also tell you the time remaining for the cycle.

Sens-A-Wash

Thermador can measure the cleanliness of each load and then adjust the wash cycle accordingly. Perhaps you only need a lighter wash with dishes that are less soiled. The machine senses it and adjusts the cycle.

Interior blue light

When the door is open, you can illuminate the tub to see into the back and know how much room is left; when unloading, you can easily see if there are remaining dishes on the rack. In the Star Sapphire Series, you have the option to illuminate with six different levels of lighting. Fancy!

Push to Open door

If your hands are full or messy, just press against the door to open it or to close it. Look, Ma, no hands! With this option, you can also choose to have no handle at all, using the push feature only, and allowing for a super sleek door front with no protruding handle and no unsightly pocket handle, either.

Smart features

Since the dishwashers are quiet, you can monitor the cycles with your smart device to know if the appliance is still running, which cycle it's in, and how much time is remaining. You can also receive a text when it's completely finished so you can unload.

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The Emerald Series

This series, which might be the entry level for Thermador, contains the features of the mid-range models of many brands. The Thermador price, however, is higher than many of the mid-range products of the other brands. The Emerald Series includes a top third rack, you can choose your handle, it's ready for a custom panel to match your kitchen cabinetry, and it runs quieter than the average standard dishwasher (52 decibels) at 48 decibels, which is quieter than many conversation levels. There are six choices of wash cycles plus five additional wash options.

Cost

  • Emerald Series: around $1,399
  • Topaz Series: around $1,799
  • Sapphire: around $2,299
  • Star Sapphire: around $2,799

The Topaz Series

The noise level of this series is 44 decibels, making it officially squeak into the quiet dishwasher label of the industry standards. There's a built-in water softener to eliminate water marks on glassware and other dishware, and we haven't seen this feature on any other brand. There are also foldable tines to better fit your individual pieces of glassware so they don't move.

The Sapphire Series

There's an interior blue light so you can easily view all of your dishware and glassware, even if the rack isn't pulled all the way out. The push door allows you to press on the door to open it or close it, especially if your hands are full. This is even quieter at 42 decibels. Their Star Dry with Zeo Light boasts to be one of the best drying systems on the market, and the zeo light has a mineral that facilitates this process. What's even better is that it takes no chemicals, so it's "clean" and there's no product to replace.

The Star Sapphire Series

For about $400 more than the Sapphire Series, this series offers a more flexible third rack, six adjustable lighting levels, and the added function of a 20-minute hot water cycle. The downside is that the noise level creeps up to 44. It's not a huge difference as it still stays officially in the quiet range.

Our favorite Thermador

Our best entry-level dishwasher is the Emerald Series, model DWHD650WFP. There are six cycles plus five options, the Sens-A-Wash option, and the quick-wash option. The Powerboost feature allows increased water pressure and a higher water temperature to attack any stubborn soil on your dishware. At 48 decibels, this is still a good noise level, even though it's not officially considered in the quiet range in the industry. There's a three-stage filtration system to discard sticky residues from coming back on the dishes. Wifi comes standard, and so does an adjustable upper rack, and a third rack. So you can see that Thermador's "entry level" dishwasher carries much more than what you might expect: it certainly delivers high end features.

1,2, Free

Thermador offers an option that if you are going to purchase an appliance set for your kitchen, the dishwasher would be the third piece, so they offer that free. Some have suggested offering this set even in a rental unit as the set together is quite high end for the renter, and you have the bonus of a free dishwasher.

Warranty

The warranty is good for 730 days from the date of purchase. Any manufacturer damage to the finish of the product is warrantied for 60 days after purchase date.

Downsides

There are a few things to mention here. Thermador is a little louder than its luxury counterparts. In addition, it dries the traditional way of using the moist, hot air with the drying cycle. They do have the Star Dry system which is more efficient at drying. More forward-thinking brands, however, will either have the door pop open for dry air to help the cycle, or will have a vent to allow outside air in to speed up the process. Also, Thermador isn't as accessible as other brands. Some stores, including big boxes, sell them, some don't, and some sell only a few models. You may have to look around to find Thermador models in person or to find a store that sells the one you think you'd like.

Great quality, a few drawbacks

Thermador offers a great American-made product. With only three series to choose from, making a selection is much easier. Each of the series includes advanced features that most brands would either have as options or only on their highest-end models, if at all. That said, you know that even at the entry level Thermador, you'll get a plethora of features, and the high price tag will reflect that. Complaints are few, and mainly have to do with the dry cycle and a bit with the noise. We don't see complaints about the machine breaking down. The price is higher than other brands, so make the choice that's best for your budget.

LG Review 4 Star Rating

LG

4 Star Rating
  • 4 spray arms
  • Adjustable 3rd rack
  • Smart features
  • Easy shopping experience

LG is a giant South Korean company known for TVs, phones, and home appliances. The dishwasher line is still developing: they have about ten models, and all have good, innovative features. LG dishwashers can have standard, front controls as well as the sleek, hidden, top controls. Their door fronts can come in stainless steel and black stainless, as well as the new styles of matte black and matte white.

QuadWash + TrueSteam Technology

The four spray arms clean dishes from multiple angles to get into the hardest-to-reach places of your dishware and glassware. Steam power gently penetrates food residue and minimizes water spots.

Adjustable third rack

This extra rack fits in nicely at the top of the tub and holds oddly-shaped utensils, knives, and other items that might not fit easily in the other two racks or silverware basket. Not all brands' third racks are height-adjustable, but LG's are, allowing for taller items here such as little cups. Be aware, the taller the object on this rack, the lower it must be, taking off head space from the rack below.

Smart Features

Some models come equipped with smart features so you can monitor and control your appliance from almost anywhere. You'll know which cycle the dishwasher is in, and you can even get alerts for maintenance tips, all with the ThinQ app.

LG Electronics Series

This entry-level series has a NeveRust stainless steel tub; QuadWash with four spray arms to power clean from different angles; Dynamic Dry for faster, more complete drying; high-temp final rinse; front control panel; adjustable upper rack; a fan in the door; and space for 15 place settings. This series is their loudest at about 50 decibels, which is just quieter than a normal conversation. Your dishwasher might compete for your attention at that noise level, although it is just below the national average of standard dishwashers.

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LG Studio Series

This series has an adjustable third rack, rails that glide easily, QuadWash to clean in different directions and angles, Smart Home and wifi-enabled features, True Steam to steam off the stuck-on debris that often takes time to remove, and a three-stage filter system to keep food out of the tub and not sticking to other dishes. This series has a noise level of about 40 decibels, which is rather quiet.

Cost

  • LG Electronics Series: $699 - $1,249
  • LG Studio Series: about $1,300
  • LG Signature Series: about $1,900

LG Signature Series

These models are in Lg's highest line and include all of the above plus interior LED lighting to easily check on dishes when you open the door, an auto cycle to sense the level of soil on your dishes for optimal cleaning, and dual zone technology so that the upper and lower racks have individualized water pressure. This series boasts 38 decibels of noise level, similar to that of a whisper. This series shouldn't compete for your attention noise-wise even when you are nearby.

Our favorite LG dishwasher

We like the LG QuadWash LDP6797ST. It has four spray arms rather than two, which rotate back and forth to reach all angles. It's quiet, has adjustable racks, and has great performance for both washing and drying. This model has built-in wifi and an app that notifies you when the dishes are clean - it also works with Alexa and Google Assistant. Included in this model is the handy third rack for oddly-shaped utensils or knives.

Warranty

There's a 1-year warranty on parts and labor, 5 years on the control board and rack parts, and a 10-year warranty on the Direct Drive Motor.

Good all-around dishwashers

Although LG may have fewer models than their competitors, they do make shopping a bit easier without getting lost in a plethora of models to choose from, and they still have all or most of the options that other brands offer. They are competitive in price, have good ratings, and produce a good product. That said, there are some customer complaints about dishwashers that just stop working and that customer service is lacking. It might be wise to look into extended warranty plans, either through LG or from your retailer, just in case.

GE Review 4 Star Rating

GE

4 Star Rating
  • Several color options
  • Good features on standard models
  • Many energy-efficient models
  • Third rack option

Where some companies' various products might lose sight of performance as they aim for the most frills, GE's priority stays focused on appliances that are functional and practical. That said, they do have higher-end lines with lavish options and that still maintain great performance. At GE, there are more than 80 models, ranging from $230 to $1,700. Their dishwashers come in a variety of capacities, styles, and cleaning and monitoring features including a "smart" option.

Antimicrobial technology

Their UltraFresh System Dishwasher has built-in antimicrobial technology to ensure a cleaner dishwashing routine. Working 24/7, it offers a fresher dishwasher by working in between cycles. This feature is offered on the Profile series.

Dry Boost

When hard-to-dry items are placed in the appliance, Dry Boost can get them up to three times drier than with heated cycles alone. It doesn't leave water behind and offers even heat for a complete dry. This is a feature offered on the Profile series.

Sanitize cycle

With all the food on the plates and fingerprints on the glasses, the Sanitize Cycle offered on the Profile Series offers peace of mind for the next user. The high temperature rinse can reduce the bacteria found on dishes by more than 99%.

Twin Turbo Dry Boost

Not only can your dishes have the advantage of Dry Boost, there's a Twin Turbo Dry Boost option where a dual fan system and inline heater provide excellent performance on your dishware and glassware, even on the plastic ones.

Fun design options

Choose the look of your appliance. Select your favorite door from six different color and finish options, the location of the control panels, and the handle styles. Not only can you choose your performance level, you can choose the look you like.

Smart dishwashers

When you select a GE Profile Smart Dishwasher, you can use the SmartHQ app to monitor the cycle and remaining time. You can lock and unlock the appliance, and even automatically reorder detergent so you never run out. If there's anything that could hinder your less-than-perfect wash and dry, you'll get an alert. These dishwashers come with built-in wifi or optional wifi for an appliance that doesn't already have it built in.

Deep clean silverware jets

No such thing as caked-on residue left on the silverware. This feature has jets placed strategically underneath the silverware basket, focusing all their cleaning power to this area. They blast away the stuck-on bits for spotless eating utensils.

Bottle jets

These clever jets are placed on the top rack to reach the tightest of places in glasses, jars, and vases. There's nothing that's out of reach when your piece is placed above the little red jet and held securely with the accompanying red gripper.

Piranha Hard Food Disposer

The top rack can be adjusted to fit taller vases, glasses and bottles. Or, if there are tall or bulky bottom-rack items, take the top shelf and raise it. This rack can be adjusted two inches up or down.

Adjustable top rack

The top rack can be adjusted to fit taller vases, glasses and bottles. Or, if there are tall or bulky bottom-rack items, take the top shelf and raise it. This rack can be adjusted two inches up or down.

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Wash zones

If you want to run a half load, you can turn on just the top wash arms or the bottom wash arms if you like. Save water and energy, and only wash what you need.

Cost

  • GE series: $230 - $1,000
  • Profile series: $850 - $1,650
  • Cafe series: $1,070 - $1,700

Stainless steel interior

Many GE dishwashers come with a stainless steel interior. This can prevent rust better than those with a plastic interior.

Three series to choose from

The series choices are GE, GE Profile, and Cafe. If you're designing or redesigning your kitchen, you might want the Profile or Cafe series. If you just want a dishwasher that does the job for a reasonable price, try the standard GE dishwasher line.

GE series

This basic series includes the standard wash system, a hard food disposer, deluxe silverware basket, standard upper rack, heat dry on/off option, and QuietDesign sound insulation package. Several additional options are available while still staying in this series. Their "quiet" level is between 54 and 62 decibels (dBA), which is higher than the national, standard-dishwasher level at 52 dBA. There aren't a lot of features, but these appliances are reasonable in price and give your dishes a good clean and dry.

GE Profile series

This most popular series includes a full, stainless steel interior, a cleaning system with 102 cleaning jets, a quad blade arm that reverses for more cleaning area, a quiet water valve, sealed toe kick, bottle wash jets, hard food disposer, low-rinse aid indicator, child lock, tines that fold up or down for dish placement personalization, adjustable upper rack, quad-blade middle arm wash arm, and a reversing quad-blade lower jet. Whew! There are lights to indicate when it's clean, sanitized, and has finished the cycle. The quiet package offers a noise level of 46 decibels (dBA), which is quieter than the national standard noise level of 52 decibels, but not yet considered quiet by national standards. Install can be flush with the cabinets for a sleek and space-saving look, and there are other features that can be add-ons.

Cafe series

The controls on this series of dishwashers are on the top, so they're not visible when the door is closed. The tub is stainless steel and there's a full-wrap blanket for insulation. The quiet package offers a noise level of 45 decibels (dBA), which is pretty quiet, but still not quiet according to national standards. The dishwasher control features are the same as in the Profile series, and adds an automatic hot start, automatic temperature control, bottle jets, dedicated silverware jets, a drain pump, a clean sensor, and a hard food disposer with a removable filter. The wash arms include three wash levels, bottle jets, and lower, middle, and upper jets. There are rows of tines that can fold up or down depending on your dish-shape needs, there's an included third rack that's above the regular top rack, fan-assist dry, and heat on-off dry. This is their top-of-the-line series and can include additional options to meet your needs or "smart" appliance desires.

Our favorite GE model

The GE Profile PDT715SYNFS offers great cleaning and drying, a Sani cycle to eliminate 99.9% of dishware bacteria, bottle jets, deep-clean silverware jets, and the fabulous DryBoost with Fan Assist for efficient drying, even on plastic containers. The door boasts fingerprint resistant stainless for a clean-looking appliance.

Warranty

There is a limited, one-year warranty on the entire appliance. The water distribution system carries a limited, 2-year warranty, and the tub and door liner have a limited, 10-year warranty. There are more details included in their full warranty description.

Good customer service

When you call GE, they answer. This can't be said of all brands. Not only do they answer, but they may be able to answer basic questions over the phone. They can also book an appointment with a repair person, and you don't have to wait months for the date. This is especially helpful, as if your appliance isn't working, you don't want to be without it for months until the arrival of the repair person.

Best for function, not form

GE carries three series of dishwashers, all of good quality and longevity. Their basic line is reasonably priced, cleans well, but is quite noisy. Their Profile and Cafe lines are reasonably-priced for the features they offer, boast over 120 cleaning jets and various drying options. Because of the value for the money along with high marks for reliability, we highly recommend GE dishwashers. If their noise levels were lower, they would probably have earned an even higher rating from us.

Frigidaire Review 3.5 Star Rating

Frigidaire

3.5 Star Rating
  • Company with a long history
  • Energy-saving option to dry without heat
  • Fits 14 place settings
  • Optional third rack

Frigidaire has three series of dishwashers. Their basic series is , well, pretty basic - and pretty loud. Their middle series has nice added features, such as the third rack, an adjustable middle rack, an optional 34-minute cleaning cycle, a door that stays put when open, and is a bit quieter than the national average dishwasher level of noise. The Professional Model has fun features like a floor beam to notify you if the machine is running or finished, an even shorter quick cycle, and individual sprayers for stubborn soil on glasses or bottles. This brand has good cleaning, nice features on the middle- and higher-level models, but some customers complain that Frigidaire lacks effectiveness with respect to drying capabilities.

History

Frigidaire has been around for quite some time and is a household trusted tradition. From 1919 to 1979, Frigidaire was owned by General Motors. In 1986 it was purchased by its European parent company, Electrolux.

Frigidaire

This basic dishwasher model, called simply Frigidaire, boasts what they call a 5-level wash system which has an upper spray nozzle, middle arm, and lower arm. The Energy Saver Dry Option allows drying without heat and can fit up to 14 place settings at a time. It's not Energy Star certified and has a sound level of 62 decibels (dBA). The average sound level for standard dishwashers is 52 decibels, so this machine is quite loud for an appliance.

Gallery Collection

All the dishwashers in this series offer their fingerprint-resistant, stainless steel finish. They feature Frigidaire's OrbitClean Wash System that can reach all dishes from multiple angles to get off the stuck-on food from even hard-to-reach places on the rack. They have the SpaceWise Organization System with manually-adjustable top rack to raise and lower it, and an oversized silverware basket. There's a 34-minute quick-wash cycle to save time and energy. The Stay-Put Door System ensures the door stays where you put it, no matter the angle, so it doesn't drop to the floor, pop up on your arm, or flip up to hit the open top rack. It comes in stainless or black stainless, and you can choose a pocket handle or bar handle. This series is Energy Star Certified and has a sound level of 49 decibels, slightly quieter than the national standard average of 52 decibels.

Professional Model

The single-model "series" is the Professional and includes the EvenDry System, and Frigidaire boasts that it comes "remarkably dry" with this feature. A third, top rack is included for oddly-shaped items that might not otherwise fit well, such as certain lids; or it can hold long or various serving utensils. With the short tines, you can even line up your silverware - so they can "spoon" with just enough space between them for a good clean- and you can take them out conveniently for easy storage in your drawer. This model can also clean your dishes quickly with a 30-minute cycle.

Unique Features

A unique feature is the individualized spray jets that you can turn on when a glass or bowl is over it, so the inside gets special attention from the water stream. The extra fancy feature is a light beam which shines on the floor to let you know from a distance if the machine is running or when your dishes are clean. This model is Energy Star certified and its loudness is at 47 decibels, lower than the 52 decibel standard average. Forty-seven decibels isn't considered quiet by industry standards, so although it is nice to have the light beam on the floor, you may still be able to hear the cycles and not need the blue-light visual.

They're energy savers

Even at the entry-level models, there's an Energy Saver Dry Option where you can dry without adding heat and raising your electric bill.

Having a party

All models can fit 14 place settings per load. That's a lot of dishes, so there shouldn't be that pile left over on the counter to wait for when you can finally unload then load the dishwasher back up again. Most brands these days can hold 14 place settings or more; and although it's not super huge per se, you may still be able to fit more dishes than an older model you may currently have.

Easy to fit dishes or glassware

The top rack is manually adjustable. So if you have tall stemware or vases, just move the rack down a bit. Large plates and cookware? No problem: move the top rack higher. This feature is on the Gallery Collection and higher.

Best Dishwashers

The handle is important

Some people like the bar as a handle. It looks fancy and may coordinate with the handles of your other appliances. Some people like the pocket handle for its sleekness and for budget purposes, as it tends to be a lower-cost feature. Keep in mind that some homes have a set of drawers that come close to the dishwasher, and you might want a pocket door so a protruding handle doesn't get in the way of drawers opening or closing. With Frigidaire, you can choose the pocket or handle.

Cost

  • Frigidaire: $529 - $1,049
  • Gallery: $879 - $1,129
  • Professional: $1,179

An upgraded feature of a third rack

The option of a third, top rack, is offered on the higher models of Frigidaire. You can line up silverware for ease of removing them from the rack and placing them in the same order in the drawer. A third rack is wonderful for odd-shaped, or long cooking utensils like cooking tongs. Or small items like paring knives that get lost in the silverware basket are perfect for the top rack. The thin, plastic lids that always fall through the rack? Lay it flat on the top rack - problem solved.

Hard to clean glasses or bottles?

No worries. Sometimes these are hard to clean if the glassware is narrow or has had liquid dry in it. No worries: the higher-end Frigidaire models have small jets placed sporadically on the top rack. Place the glassware over a jet and the glass gets complete attention.

Look Ma, no fingerprints!

Frigidaire dishwashers come standard with smudge-proof protection on the door. Stainless steel appliances are known for attracting nasty fingerprints. With Frigidaire, all dishwashers come smudge-proof, whether stainless or black stainless, so you spend less time obsessing over cleaning appliance fronts and more time doing what you want.

Our favorite Frigidaire

We liked the high-end model Gallery FGID2479SF, as it's Energy Star rated, has a stainless steel tub, third rack, adjustable upper rack, and fold-down tines. It has the OrbitClean wash system, an upgraded fan-assist drying system, and a green LED floor beam indicator light to let you know when the cycle is finished. It's pretty quiet for a Frigidaire at about 49 decibels.

Warranty

Electrolux, Frigidaire's parent company, offers a limited, one-year warranty, starting on the date of purchase. Electrolux will pay for all costs to repair or replace any parts which are proven to be defective, whether by the materials or the workmanship when they install the appliance. You can also purchase an extended warranty. Frigidaire has an excellent reputation for lasting longer than ten years, so you might not find yourself switching out the appliance until well after the ten-year mark, and the extended warranty might be something to consider.

What doesn't it include?

As with many factory warranties, Frigidaire's doesn't include "everyday wear and tear," rust, repairs done by someone who's not authorized by Electrolux, appliances that have been improperly installed by someone unauthorized by Electrolux, and more. Be sure to read the fine print when you purchase your product, but most of this is pretty standard. Also be sure to register your product with Electrolux to prove that your request for repair is within the year of purchase as well as to be sure to receive updates in case of any recalls.

Solid option for dishwashers

Frigidaire is a good dishwasher with nice features on the better models. They are reasonably priced, can last up to ten years, have good reviews on their cleaning capabilities, but they lack in their drying capabilities.

Samsung Review 3.5 Star Rating

Samsung

3.5 Star Rating
  • Third rack that's unique
  • Auto-release door for better drying
  • Extra nozzles on lower spray arms
  • Unique Tuscan stainless steel option

Surprised to learn that your mobile phone manufacturer also makes dishwashers? Samsung only offers about eight models, which have sleek styling and various color fronts, including the newer black stainless and the even newer Tuscan stainless steel, which is a premium alternative to the traditional stainless.

Tuscan stainless

This finish is a smoky, rose-gold, bronze-type of finish that's slightly matte. It's a different look than the traditional stainless or black stainless, and adds a modern, elegant element to your kitchen. If you're thinking about replacing all of your kitchen appliances, consider the Tuscan stainless for that bit of a wow factor.

Unique third rack

Almost all the dishwasher brands have a third rack as at least an option. However, Samsung's FlexTray Third Rack includes a removable tray inset so you can easily remove and transport utensils to their kitchen location. It's a lot simpler and less time consuming than taking out the silverware off the top rack, mixing it up in your hands, and then re-organizing them to place them in the drawer or on the counter. This added feature is an a-ha concept that will save you time and a small headache.

Auto Release Door

Some dishwashers don't get their dishes all the way dry as they are heating the humid air that's trapped in the appliance. Samsung's door, however, pops open a little to let the cooler, less humid air enter, and a fan helps to push out the heavy, wet air remaining from the wash/rinse cycles. This allows for a better dry and less drying time.

StormWash

Place a pot or pan that's heavily soiled over the red nozzle, and it will get special attention for its especially cooked-on dirt.

ZoneBooster

Found on a few of the models, this feature includes extra nozzles on the lower spray wand to target an array of heavily-soiled dishes on that bottom rack.

AquaBlast/Linear Wash System

This newer feature, started in 2019, has six jets on a bar that moves back and forth to hit dishes at a different angle.

Best Dishwashers

Entry level models

The entry level models include fewer fancy features, but still do a great job of cleaning, with a variety of cycles, such as Heavy and Express60 (a quicker cycle), delay start, a third rack, and an upper rack that's adjustable in height. This model is a bit loud, though, at 51 decibels - 44 decibels is considered a quiet dishwasher by industry standards. If you want to have a conversation or watch your favorite show anywhere near your dishwasher, the appliance might be competing for your attention.

Cost

  • From $549 to $1,249

Mid-range models

This range of dishwashers has the nice feature of hiding the controls on the top panel, so you don't notice the buttons and lights: your dishwasher just blends in with the rest of the kitchen. The auto-release door and the StormWash jet for a specific pot or pan are included here. This machine is considered quiet by industry standards as it boasts 42 decibels.

High-end model

An even quieter 39-decibel machine won't fight for your attention, it will just do its job quietly. The racks slide quietly and smoothly, so as not to jostle your glassware. Added features are the Linear Wash System, where water can spray in a line, in addition to the traditional circular-motion sprayers. The Zone Booster adds extra powerful jets to the lowest rack for those dirty pots and pans or dishes with stuck-on food. You can even remotely monitor or control your dishwasher with your phone or other smart device. These high-end models can come in the new, smudge-proof Tuscan stainless option for a subtle elegance.

Our favorite Samsung

The model number DW80R0R9950US offers advanced features at a mid-range price point when on sale. The door automatically opens after drying for a faster and more complete dry cycle. The linear wash system washes side-to-side to spray on more area than just the circular water motion. The flexible third rack is a great feature where the silverware area lifts out for ease of putting away silverware. The zone booster sprayer focuses its energy on that one pot or pan that's going to take more cleaning effort. The ball bearings in the rack support make the racks slide effortlessly so that the glassware doesn't rattle when in motion. It's quite quiet at 39 decibels, and the stainless steel front is smudge proof. The appliance can also be monitored or controlled from your smart device.

Warranty

There's a 1-year limited warranty, and the coverage can vary by model. The 2-year warranty covers parts, and the 5-year warranty covers the circuit board, electronic control system, linear motion parts, and the racks - specifics again depend on the model. The 10-year parts and labor warranty covers the tub and door liner, varying by model.

Not the best or the worst

Samsung offers a nice number of models without getting overwhelmed, a good range of quality features, and their dishwashers are quiet. Many reviewers are pleased with the quietness even with the loudest, or 50-decibel machine. Common complaints are issues with drainage, leaking, other mechanical issues, and not drying completely, especially on the entry-level models. Samsung dishwashers offer some value for your money, though we suggest taking a peek at more highly-rated brands first.

KitchenAid Review 3 Star Rating

KitchenAid

3 Star Rating
  • CleanWater Wash to remove floating food particles during the cycle
  • ProWash Cycle for sensing soil level on dishes
  • Third rack for silverware or odd-shaped utensils
  • Quiet cycles

Long ago, Josephine Cochrane patented what became the first dishwasher and originally sold it to restaurants and high-class hotels. In 1949, KitchenAid's dishwashers made their way into homes. Although there are many elite options on dishwashers today, much of the old design is still the basis for KitchenAid's present-day models. In the 2010s, KitchenAid had fallen out of popularity when European brands came to the US, offering quietness and innovation. In response, though, KitchenAid has bumped up their game to be better and more competitive, but not as much as other American brands.

Shhh...

KitchenAid can run from 44 decibels (dBA), equivalent to a quiet conversation, to 39 decibels, which is whisper quiet. It's best to choose a dishwasher below 50 decibels, as 50 is as loud as a conversation, and no one wants their conversation to compete with a running dishwasher. You won't have a noise problem with KitchenAid like you might with other brands.

Condensation drying

This feature was initiated by the European companies, and KitchenAid has been forward-thinking to put it in all of their dishwashers, from the starters to the most loaded with features. Condensation drying removes the heating element from the interior of the tub. This is key because if a plastic piece were to fall during a cycle, it can't burn onto the heating element, leaving tough residue and stinking up the house.

ProScrub Option

No more soaking and pre-washing your dishes with 40 jets that remove the stuck-on food. Although this feature sounds ideal, there are other dishwashers that boast 120 jets, so be sure to choose wisely.

Exterior options

KitchenAid comes in various colors and materials, including stainless steel and a smudge proof panel. Most of the KitchenAid dishwashers come with a front panel that resists fingerprints, and that would include the black stainless door front. They call it their PrintShield Finish. There are models that are panel ready, meaning you can match your appliance to your cabinets, making it virtually unnoticeable. Be sure to let your kitchen designer know ahead of time to order a panel to fit the specs of your dishwasher model.

Stainless steel tubs

Many of this brand's dishwashers come with stainless steel tubs, and is the best option for longevity of the interior of the tub as it resists rust and deterioration over the lesser, plastic tub option. Stainless steel tubs also resist stains and odors.

Fold-down tines

The rows of adjustable pins can fold down for larger, bulkier dishes and cookware on the bottom rack. They also relieve the pressure of these heavy items on the standard, stationary tines.

They're roomy

While most dishwashers can hold between 10 and 14 place settings, KitchenAid can hold up to 16 place settings. This is key for a large family or dinner party, where you would rather clean in one load instead of leaving gross dishes with dried-on food for the next cycle. Nor should you have to hand wash very often, since your KitchenAid dishwasher can handle more than your previous appliance could.

Third rack

Some of the models include a handy third rack. It slides in conveniently above the top rack and gently lines up your silverware, takes on long, or oddly-shaped utensils such as tongs, or can hold small lids or other items that might otherwise slip through the spaces. Their FreeFlex third rack is unique in that you can raise and lower it, and can even fit a pint glass on it. However, realize that the more you lower that top rack, the rack below it has less room.

Triple filtration

This feature helps prolong the life of the appliance. Each model has a screen filter, a coarse filter, and a microfilter. Food can be removed from the water and not stick back on to dishes. The filters also help to not clog the drain, which could be an expensive fix.

Best Dishwashers

A little bulky

It's great that these dishwashers hold so many dishes, but the downfall is that the door protrudes a bit far, not being flush with the cabinets. It can be an eyesore or people can bump into the door while passing by. Standard dishwashers are 24" deep, but KitchenAid's are 24.5" or 24.75" , which we think is too deep. Note that this is the depth without the handle. If you choose a pocket handle, this should still be your depth. If you choose a bar handle, that will add even more exterior bulk to your appliance. Be sure to carefully measure your space before purchasing any dishwasher to make sure it fits in the space and to see how flush it is with any nearby cabinetry.

Cost

  • From $700 to $1,999

Limited front panel styles

There are only about three different styles that KitchenAid offers. They start with the models with visible controls, then go up to a few choices of raised handles, followed by more door panel options including color and style. If you like to keep it simple, choose KitchenAid. If you like to have several features at your fingertips, a different brand might be for you.

Entry-level models

For KitchenAid's most basic dishwashers, the controls are visible on the front panel. They do have adjustable racks, but they don't have multiple wash cycles to care for your varying washing and drying needs. These models will range between $700 and $1,600.

Mid-level models

You will find a hidden control panel on the top of the door, so it's visible when the door is open and nice and sleek when closed. These models add washing cycle choices and still keep the adjustable racks. They range in price from $1,000 to $1,199.

High-level models

They include a towel bar handle rather than a pocket handle. Also included is the third, adjustable rack, and they have a maximum of six wash cycle choices. These models can be priced up to $1,999.

No smart functions

If you're a techie or you like to use apps to control your appliances in your smart home or from a distance, KitchenAid can't help you out. At this time they don't have any smart features to control your appliance remotely.

Our favorite model

Of the KitchenAids, our favorite is the KDTM354DSS, which is an oldie but a goodie. It has Ultra-Fine Filtration for cleaner wash water, 40 spray jets, the Clean Water Wash System to continually remove food particles from wash water, it's easy to load, and has better drying capabilities.

Warranty

There's a 2-year, limited warranty for materials and workmanship. The third- through fifth-year limited warranty covers certain components. See KitchenAid's warranty brochure for more details.

Nice features but lacking innovation

KitchenAid is a long-standing, reliable name in kitchen appliances. They fell a bit behind when the innovative European brands came to town. Other American brands have worked hard to compete in this area, but KitchenAid is just now beginning to up their game. That said, they do have nice features such as quietness and a large tub with more capacity along with good reliability ratings, but we believe you can get more bang for the buck with our more highly-rated dishwashers: less-protruding doors, far more than 40 cleaning jets, and several more current and helpful features to choose from.

Whirlpool Review 3 Star Rating

Whirlpool

3 Star Rating
  • AnyWare silverware basket that can attach to the door
  • Fan Dry option
  • Soil Sensor
  • Smart features

Whirlpool is a well known American-made brand, they are budget-friendly, and they are reliable. They may not have all the fancy features that the European brands offer, but you won't pay the fancy price either. And if you do ever need customer service, it also comes at a reasonable price.

Traditional drying method

Whirlpool dishwashers still use a heating element at the bottom of the tub, while European machines are discarding this for a condensation method which uses a hotter final rinse cycle to encourage condensation. However, although their new method uses less energy, they may leave your dishes moist and can take up to 30 minutes longer to dry than Whirlpool's traditional method. Be aware, though, that if plastics fall on Whirlpool's heating element, they could stick and stink as they melt onto it.

AnyWare silverware basket

This is the only silverware basket that allows you to place it in either of two places inside the tub or attach it to the door for saving even more space on the bottom rack.

Fan dry option

One of the options you can choose is a fan dryer. It speeds up the drying process by circulating the air inside the tub, allowing the appliance to run more efficiently. It is offered on only one of the models.

Soil sensor

All the Whirlpool dishwashers offer this feature which determines how dirty the dishes are and adjusts the water use and cycle time accordingly. It's easy to use, as it's a one-button feature.

Sensor cycle

This is similar to the soil sensor, but saves even more on water and energy by self-determining the size of the load and adjusting the temperature of the wash. Most models come with this feature.

Smart features

Some of the newer models come equipped with smart features and wifi connectivity. With this option, you can remotely lock your control panel, download specialty cycles from the app, troubleshoot and request support, and automatically replenish supplies through Amazon. You can even use your Alexa Assistant, Google Home, or Nest. Currently, only two models include this feature, but we imagine that as smart technology becomes more and more common, this feature will be more prevalent with Whirlpool dishwashers.

Best Dishwashers

The base models

The models for under $600 come with a pocket handle, have a plastic tub, can be almost conversation-loud at around 50 decibels or higher, and their appearance can look dated. With the noise level of these models, they would be better matched in a home where the kitchen is isolated from the other rooms in the house. If you have an open-concept home, the noise of a running dishwasher could definitely compete with your conversations, disturb your concentration while reading, or you may have to turn up the volume on your TV. The exterior can come in black, white, or stainless. The interior offers a cost-effective plastic tub which can deteriorate faster, retain odors, and keep the noise level higher. Their racks are more basic as well. The tines are further apart, but if you have mostly large pots and pans or stoneware dishes, this type of rack may be for you. These base models do have sensor wash, a sanitize setting, and a one-hour quick cycle.

Cost

  • From $499 to $1,199

Mid-range models

The models that cost between $600 and $800 have upgraded features such as fingerprint-resistant finishes, sleeker handles and control panels, a stainless steel tub, a top third rack, and they run quieter at or below 50 decibels. The models in this price range fare similarly to the base and mid models in other brands, in both price and features. The third rack allows placement of silverware and long or oddly-shaped utensils, and it frees up space on the bottom rack for cooking vessels or more dishes. The front is more modern, with a sleeker pocket handle or a contemporary bar handle, a fingerprint-resistant front, and the controls can be hidden. Some of the models in this price range have tines that raise and lower for a better fit for some of your dishware and glassware, and the upper rack can be raised or lowered if your bottom-rack dishes are taller or the glassware and vases need more space.

Premium models

The models that cost between $800 and $1,000 offer at least some of the high-end features of other brands. The elegant black stainless door front is an option. Their total-coverage spray arms have 21 nozzles for better coverage, and there's a top third rack. For better drying results, you can select heated and vented drying - the European-type offerings- that allow the steamy air to escape during the dry cycle. These models are the quietest Whirlpool offers at 41-47 decibels. According to industry standards, 44 decibels is officially considered in the quiet range, so at that level, the dishwasher shouldn't compete noise-wise with your activities or conversations. These models can also be equipped with smart features to monitor or control the appliance from your smart device.

Look to the mid-range appliances

We suggest the mid-price dishwashers. They offer quite a few nice features for a good price. Unfortunately, with the base level machines, you get what you pay for. They look antiquated, they are loud, and offer only minimal features. The premium models can compete with other American-made dishwasher brands, but other brands, especially the European ones, can offer much more: more spray nozzles, a corner-to-corner spray range, more rack features, and more choices all around, for not much more money. With Whirlpool, we suggest their $600-$800 range models.

Our favorite

We like the mid-range fingerprint-resistant stainless steel model WDT730PAHZ. It has five wash cycles and cycle memory so it can run the last cycle you chose, allowing one-button ease. There are two separate sensors for soil and wash load to maximize performance. The drying cycle improves performance with a fan to circulate the air while pulling in dry air. There's a short, one-hour wash cycle to finish the load quickly. This model comes in black, white, stainless, and black stainless, though we choose stainless as our favorite option as it is a common finish for most kitchens.

Budget-friendly and American made

Whirlpool is reliable, American made, and has a long-standing name and reputation. It is a great, budget-friendly brand. If you're not on a tight budget and would like to consider more features and quieter options, there are other brands that offer additional features for not much more money. And if you really want to get the most up-to-date features, try the European brands we highly recommend.

Maytag Review 2.5 Star Rating

Maytag

2.5 Star Rating
  • Dual power filtration
  • PowerBlast heavy duty cycle
  • Louder than other models

Remember the old commercial about the Maytag man getting bored while waiting for someone to call for repairs? Their point is that Maytag is so good at what it does that their appliances won't ever need a repair person. Customer feedback indicates, however, that the complaints might not actually get to the repair person, or the parts might not be covered under the warranty. That said, there are very nice features that can be included in your Maytag model. Maytag "s dishwashers may not offer the fancy features that many brands will carry, but they don't carry their price tag, either.

Dual-power filtration

Stainless steel blades coupled with micro filtration grind up and dispose of hard food so that it's out of the tub and won't stick to other dishes. It also allows for cleaner water to splash against your dishware and glassware. Maytag's site shows a video where they put this feature to the test. They inserted a frozen pizza, chocolate cake, and peanut butter sandwiches in the appliance and ran it. By the end of the cycle, all had disintegrated and there was nothing left (don't try this at home, kids).

PowerBlast cycle + dry

PowerBlast is a heavy-duty cycle to scour off the toughest, stuck-on food. Plus, with PowerDry, you can get your dishes up to 60% more dry with this option, where there's heating drying coupled with a powerful fan. Need your dishes even cleaner? Some of the models have steam sanitizing to offer you not only clean, but sanitized dishware, glassware, and of course, eating utensils.

Third rack

Some of the models come with an additional rack at the top of the tub to hold silverware, especially sharp knives that might poke you in a traditional basket; thin plastic lids that might otherwise fall through a space in the rack; and oddly-shaped utensils that would otherwise get in the way on a different rack or silverware basket.

Keep it simple

Maytag's focus is on functionality, not how many bells and whistles they can add on and charge you for. Therefore, there are about ten models to choose from, which keeps the choosing process from being overwhelming. Another added benefit is that with fewer choices in this brand with mid-range dishwashers, there's not a wide span between lower-price models and higher-price models.

Best Dishwashers

Noisy

Maytag's noise level isn't the quietest. The average, standard dishwasher's noise level is 52 decibels (dBA), and Maytag can be quieter than average, hovering near 47 decibels, but never hitting the level of what the industry considers quiet at 44 decibels or less. You'll hear it, but it shouldn't compete with your conversations in the kitchen. There are dishwashers from other brands that have a noise level of the high 30 dBA range, and they offer more features, but you'll also pay for that. Check out our other reviews for better noise levels, if sound level is important to you.

Cost

  • From $799 to $999

Our favorite Maytag

Model MDB4949SKZ may be noisy at 50 decibels, but we like the cleaning/drying features. The Dual Power Filtration does the pre-scrubbing for you, the PowerBlast cycle scours away the stuck-on food, Heated Dry really does dry the dishes, the high upper rack fits tall pots and pans below it, Leak Detect helps identify and contain possible leaks, the stainless steel tub is quiet and rust-resistant, and the front panel is fingerprint-resistant.

Warranty

The Maytag dishwashers have a 10-year warranty on the steel tub, nylon racks, and the chopper. We've read that many users have complained about the machine not working - leaking, the motor pump going out, wheels on the rack not working. We find it curious that the warranty doesn't cover the motor or the actual workings of the appliance. It seems that if the appliance is going to go bad, it may happen within the first few months. Those who have had the appliance for several years seem to have no complaints.

Customer service issues

Users have said that the manual doesn't include Contact Us information, thus making the user take more time to find and reach customer service. Others have said that once you contact customer service, they may not get back to you. In addition, if the parts and labor aren't covered in the warranty, there's another stumbling block. Perhaps the commercials about the Maytag repairman having no work might not be because the dishwasher runs perfectly, but because what does break, the warranty doesn't cover.

Affordable but disappointing warranty

Maytag has been known for its dependability and its fair price point. They may not have as many super-chic features as most other brands you might encounter, and they may not be whisper quiet, but maybe you're not looking to pay for that, either. If you want a long-standing household name and don't need many fancy features or a long list of models that will just confuse you, Maytag might be your choice. Remember to take the very limited warranty into consideration before your purchase.

Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

Think about what you want in your new appliance. You'll obviously want a dishwasher that does a good job of washing your dishes. There are a lot of fun features you can have, such as a third rack, lights, and smart capabilities, but if the machine doesn't do a good job of actually washing your dishes, what's the point of any of the bells and whistles?

So once you choose a brand that you like, you can select your wish list features such as the third, top rack; a quick-wash cycle; a delay start; self-cleaning filters - yes, you should know if you need to clean your filters for maintenance, which is typical; food pulverizers; interior components made of stainless steel to promote longevity; child locks; sanitizer settings; sustainable materials; special jets under the silverware caddy; and smart capabilities, so you can control the dishwasher from your phone or smart home system.

And that's just the beginning. Here are several other criteria to keep in mind as you shop for your new kitchen appliance:

  • Average price range. You can spend anywhere between $250 and $2,000, depending on the brand and the features you're looking for. The less expensive, lower-end models may require you to rinse your dishes more, and the more costly, higher-end models can have smart features, meaning you can control the machine with your phone.
  • Installation. Be sure to ask if there's a fee for installation. Installation rates can vary, but expect an additional $200 for install.
  • Finishes, handles, and control panel visibility. Dishwashers, like most kitchen appliances, come in white, black, and stainless steel. There are two additional styles, which are finger-print resistant stainless steel and black stainless steel. The black stainless is a darker stainless, and the finger-print resistant looks like traditional stainless, but resists the dreaded finger prints. If you can be open to something besides stainless steel, white or black should save you a couple hundred dollars. If you choose the pocket handle over the bar handle, that could also save you some bucks. It's nice when the control panel hides when the door is shut. But if you don't mind looking at it, you can save yourself some money here, too.
  • Detergent. No matter what, use the right detergent. Using a poor quality dishwasher detergent, no matter the brand you choose, can make the best brands have poor quality output, due to no fault of the appliance. This is a simple, good decision everyone should make. Once you receive your new dishwasher, the manufacturer will probably recommend a detergent for optimum cleaning and drying results.
  • Noise. Most of us don't want to hear the dishwasher running its cycles as we are moving throughout the kitchen or resting in a room nearby. Most models are rated in decibels to convey the cycle's quietness. A machine rated lower than 44 decibels (dBA) is considered by the industry to be officially in the quiet range. Machines in the mid to high 50s are louder and could definitely compete with your conversation or for your attention.
  • Rack style. Racks are important features and should be carefully considered. Nylon-coated racks are the best because they are less likely to crack over time. Tines in rows that fold down are great for items that are large or unusually-shaped. Look for at least one folding row of tines. Having a top rack with an adjustable height is beneficial so you can lower it for taller glasses, vases, or stemware, or raise it if your cookware is tall or bulky.

    The best top racks have three adjustable heights where you can set both the right and left high or low, or one side can be high while the other is low, allowing space for taller cookware on the bottom rack. A third rack is becoming a more common feature, even with the more reasonably-priced appliances. This third rack is above the traditional top rack and is shallow, so it allows plenty of space for the glasses below it. Some people like to line up their silverware in between the small tines. It can fit shallow, awkward items like cup lids, tongs, long-handled serving/cooking utensils, where in other places in the dishwasher, they might be a hard fit. Not everyone is a fan of the third rack as it does take up space, but it is a feature that is growing in popularity. If, however, you end up not liking it after trying it, it's easy to remove.

    Consider even the little things like clips to hold delicate glasses in place, to make sure your glassware doesn't bang against anything else during the wash cycle. Ball bearings in the racks make the racks move more smoothly and don't jerk around the dishes as you pull or push the racks. A fancy, new feature is an interior light in the dishwasher. It certainly isn't necessary, but it's nice for seeing all your items as you load and unload. These are in the more expensive lines, of course. Now, imagine what you will load in your machine, especially on the bottom rack.

    Some dishwashers have their tines far apart, allowing space for pots, pans, bowls, and larger pieces. Others have several tines that are closer together for thinner salad plates and dinner plates. Still others have wide tines with additional tines that flip up or down, depending on the load. Check the thickness of your plates and think about if you want your plates closer together or far apart - tine width is a personal preference, but important in your dishwasher-buying decision making.
  • Available space. Be sure to measure the space you have. Most dishwashers come in 24" , so that's easy, but if your kitchen is on the small side, the space allotted might be only 18" . Save yourself a restocking fee and extra delivery charge by making sure the dishwasher will fit your kitchen space.

To help you make this important purchasing decision, Top Consumer Reviews has evaluated today's most popular dishwasher brands. If you're done spending too much time pre-washing your dishes, continually re-arranging them because the rack and tine design is poor, drying them after the dishwasher supposedly dried them, or re-washing after the clumps of old food just don't come off after a full cycle, do consider a new dishwasher. You can save a lot of time by not pre-washing, post-washing, and drying. And with all that extra time, you could relax reading a book or watching your favorite show while a super quiet dishwasher does all the work while making virtually no noise.

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Dishwasher FAQ

Most homes have the space for a 24" dishwasher. Dishwashers come in 18" , a shorter below-counter model, or a countertop model, but they are quite rare in the US. The most standard color front panel these days is still stainless steel. Stainless looks nice and can blend nicely with other stainless appliances, regardless if your dishwasher is a different brand than your other appliances. Another common door is fingerprint-resistant stainless. It can be a slightly different sheen than traditional stainless, but is much easier to keep clean.
Dishwashers can run from $250 to $2,000. Your cost will vary, based on the brand, size, and features you select. Installation is another factor to consider with dishwashers. With big box stores, the install fee seems to be between $150 and $300, and includes the parts for the installation kit. It's wise to get a professional plumber's help with water hookup as you could pay dearly in flooring costs if there were a leak due to human error.
Entry-level machines may have an outdated front panel, may run loudly which could compete with the noise level of your conversations, have a limited number of tines to hold dishes in place, and a plastic tub which can rust more easily and radiate the noise from the sprayers. The higher-end dishwashers may offer interior lighting to see way back in the machine so you don't miss unloading any dishes, a smart feature so you can monitor and control the appliance from a distance or order detergent on a regular basis. They can feature more than 100 spray jets, jets that focus on specific glassware or specific pots and pans for a super clean load. They can feature grinding of leftover food so as not to clog your drain, soft water for a spotless finish even on plastic containers, and sprayers that change direction to get to every nook and cranny. These models may cost more, but the options may seem endless, and can have quite good user reviews.
Some brands have had complaints that their model can break within months. On the other hand, some can last more than ten years. Check the warranty of the brand you think you'll purchase. Most offer a one-year limited warranty with an extended warranty on some of the parts, up to usually five years. It's possible that your appliance has a ten-year warranty on some of the parts, so be sure to read our reviews for those details and also check for even more details from the manufacturer.
Most dishwashers will fit 14 place settings, which includes dishes, glasses, and silverware. Some dishwashers can hold 15 or 16 place settings, which is great for a large family or for parties so you're not waiting for one load to finish before you wash the rest of the place settings. Having a third rack and eliminating the silverware basket will add room to the bottom rack for more dishes or cookware.
The newer feature that's becoming more standard in dishwashers is the third rack. It's a shallow, top rack that fits silverware so you don't have to use the silverware basket. Or, keep your silverware basket and use the 3rd rack for long utensils like tongs, small plastic lids that might otherwise fit between the tines, small appetizer utensils that are hard to dig out of the silverware basket, or steak knives that might otherwise poke your hands if you wash them pointy-end up. Also, adjustable racks throughout the dishwasher make it easy to accommodate stemware, cooking pots, water bottles and more.
Some dishwashers can be barely audible, at below 40 decibels. These dishwashers usually include a smart feature so you can monitor and control the cycles from your smart device since you may not even hear the appliance at all. If your dishwasher has a 44 decibel rating or lower, it is considered by the industry to be a quiet dishwasher, so check for that. But, other dishwashers can be noisy and compete for your attention whether you're in a conversation, trying to watch your movie at a reasonable volume, or reading. The more inexpensive models may be at 50 decibels or higher, and we suggest avoiding those if you have an open-concept house where you for sure could hear the wash and rinse cycles.
Depending on the store you choose, delivery fees will vary. Our research finds that if you live within a reasonable distance from the store, the delivery could be free if the dishwasher costs $400 or higher. Since a majority of the dishwashers cost above $400, you can hope for free delivery. If your dishwasher is less than $400, you could pay $100 for delivery, so rather than spend your money on delivery, add the $100 or so to the price of the dishwasher to get more and better features plus free delivery.
The Best Reviews of Dishwashers