Should I buy a dishwasher? It’s been proven that dishwashers that qualify for the Energy Star designation save on average 12% more energy, and 30% more water than standard models. Washing by hand can actually be wasteful – you can get through at least ten times more water than a dishwasher! Now you know that you can have this appliance and still be kind to the environment you may want to use this guide for dishwasher buying tips…
Each dishwasher model has individual advantages and disadvantages, but counter top models and portable units are the most economically priced. Higher end portables and built in units will cost more depending on style and added features.
Traditional under counter installed units need plumbing installation and a certain amount of storage space. A permanently installed appliance will have to stay if you move, so aren’t advisable if you rent your home or apartment.
Drawer dishwashers come in two styles – double drawers, or single drawer units. They need the same type of installation as a traditional dishwasher, but the biggest benefit is convenience as you can run the double drawers independently. An added bonus is being able to run efficient smaller loads when you need to. A single drawer is ideal for individuals or couples with fewer dishes to wash.
Portable free-standing dishwashers are perfect for families and don’t need any special plumbing work. All you need is a space in your kitchen to connect it with an adaptor to the hot water faucet, then load and operate as needed.
Counter top dishwasher types are the most economical of all and just need a counter top close to the sink. Capacity is usually a place setting for four and dishes can be heat, air, or hand dried. Newer models tend to have enhanced washing cycles and heated drying. A place setting comprises of a soup bowl, dinner plate, dessert bowl, cup and saucer, glass, knife, fork, and three spoons!
Dishwasher buying tips
Look for dishwashers with sensor checks that determine the right amount of water and time needed to get everything clean. Adjustable racks and flatware slots with fold down sections allow you to fit in odd shaped dishes, and check that controls are clearly marked to enable you to see cycle times and other displays. Don’t forget to measure the space and get the right dimensions so you’re not disappointed when your appliance arrives!
Programmes will vary on different models – quick washes last about 30 minutes, delicate modes care for glass and fine china by lowering the water pressure, and delay starts will let you take advantage of cheaper electricity by washing at night. Always check energy ratings to make sure you get the best washing and drying performances.
Whether you opt for a budget or high-end machine keeping on top of maintenance is a must. Basic care includes:
- A weekly clean of the dishwasher filter
- A weekly clean of the dishwasher door seals
- A monthly top-up of the salt and rinse aid
- A six monthly run of the dishwasher when empty
- A six monthly clean of the dishwasher spray arms after removing them
Need an experienced technician to help you with dishwasher repairs? Find a company offering an insured service with a full six months quality guarantee. Look for same-day services you can book without needing to pay a deposit, and read the company reviews to make sure you’ll get all the help you need!