Dishwasher buying-guide are no longer a luxury – they’re a necessity in today’s busy lifestyles. Choose a dishwasher carefully to optimize its benefit.
The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers estimates a dishwasher will save an average user 4 hours of handwashing per week. That’s 208 hours per year — the same as 26 8-hour working days! Maytag Appliances recommends consumers look at more than the price when purchasing a dishwasher. It breaks out the important considerations in dishwasher selection into four factors: Dishwasher Buying Guide
- energy efficiency
Before embarking on the search for a new dishwasher, Maytag suggests consumers answer a few basic questions.
Dishwasher Buying Guide
Do you foresee family changes affecting dishwashing needs?
- additional children or adults
- fewer children or adults
- accessibility needs for young, elderly, or physically impaired family members
- eating out more or less often
- entertaining more or less in the home
Do you have a style preference?
- under counter
Which cycles, options, and features do you prefer?
- pots and pans/heavy
- quick wash/rinse
- heat dry
- rinse and hold
- delay start
- water heating options
Which items besides daily tableware (glasses, cups, bowls, and silverware) do your family use?
- pizza pans/cookie sheets
- large pots and pans
- casserole dishes
- mixing bowls
New dishwasher technology is using sensors inside the appliance to sense how dirty dishes are to run appropriate cleaning cycles. This allows the user to start the appliance with just a touch of a button.
The Wash System
Maytag recommends buyers look for a three-level wash system, with an upper wash arm, lower wash arm, and a center wash tower.
The size and number of spray arm holes can be an indication of the cleaning effectiveness. Smaller holes can create a finer, more vigorous spray for greater scrubbing action.
It is important the dishwasher keeps food particles from redepositing on clean dishes. The best way to do so is by filtering the water. A system that filters 100 percent of the water through a very fine mesh is very effective. Some units have a secondary filter using an even finer mesh, for even better effectiveness.
Internal Food Disposer
To improve performance and eliminate the need for prewashing, some dishwashers have a disposer to chop food into tiny particles, which are removed with the drain water. A blade made of stainless steel will be able to chop hard foods — like popcorn kernels — as well as soft foods.
Water Heating Capability
If for some reason the water being supplied to the dishwasher is less than 120 degrees F, select a dishwasher with a thermostat and heating capability to guarantee temperatures are hot enough to remove grease foods. Check to see if the heating function is selectable, so it is used only when needed.
Rinse Aid Dispenser
Rinse aids improve drying results — they help prevent spotting and filming. Some dispensers allow the amount of rinse aid to be adjusted to meet your water conditions. Dishwashers with a window in the rinse aid dispenser allow the user to easily see when it is time to refill the dispenser.
A heated dry cycle helps dry dishes more thoroughly. An open dry system allows moisture to silently escape the dishwasher.
Any dishwasher that cleans well makes noise. However, a well-insulated unit can provide quieter operation. Select a unit with insulation placed all around the tub for the highest level of sound dampening.
Maytag suggests buyers base their decision for a dependable dishwasher on the following factors:
Reputation of the Dealer
Buy from a reputable dealer with a history of satisfied customers. An in-store service department, or arrangements with an outside firm to handle service, may also be important.
Reputation of the Brand
Reading consumer buying guides or talking with friends regarding their brand experiences can be helpful.
Carefully study the manufacturer’s warranty to determine how long the complete appliance is covered. Certain parts may be covered by an extended warranty. It may be desirable to have a warranty that moves with you in the event of a household move.
Motor and Pump Design
Combining the functions of filtering, circulating, and draining the water in one unit means more dependable operation, according to Maytag Appliances, which also says that placing the motor under the pump results in a simple design with few moving parts. Some brands provide an extended warranty on this system.
Racks are metal wires coated with vinyl or nylon. Nylon, according to Maytag, is more durable. The appliance maker also recommends buyers look for the thick, ball-shaped coating on the tips of the tines. This extra coating helps protect this most-used section of the racks and helps cushion dishes.
A dishwasher with major components located near the front helps save time during a service call and thus reduces the service call cost, should one ever be necessary.
Tub and Line
Specially formulated plastic materials are now being used for many dishwasher interiors. These materials replaced porcelain enameled metal. The plastic materials are resistant to chipping, don’t rust, and may help the dishwasher work more quietly.
Compare the estimated yearly energy costs of models similar in size and features.
This capability allows the user to program the start of the appliance for off-peak energy hours. This also means the dishwasher will stop after everyone in the household has finished taking their showers or baths.
Total Water Use/Cycle
The myth that a dishwasher uses more water than hand washing is not true! In fact, an Ohio State University study found today’s efficient dishwashers use an average of 5.8 fewer gallons of water per load than hand washing. That translates into more than 2,100 gallons of water per year. By not prewashing, you save even more.
The total water used by dishwashers varies greatly by brand and model, so compare the water use during similar cycles to get an accurate water usage comparison.
Look for dishwashers that provide enough cycles to handle loads of varying dishes and amounts of food soil. Basic needs are:
- light to medium soil — Light/China or China/Crystal
- normally soiled dishes — Normal/Regular
- heavy/encrusted soils — Pots and Pans
A Rinse And Hold cycle may be desired if items will be sitting longer than a day in the dishwasher before a full load can accumulate. This minimizes food odor. A Quick Wash/Rinse cycle will wash lightly soiled items when a quick turnaround is needed. It may not include a dry cycle so towel drying will be needed.
Most dishwashers use one of two different methods to fill with water.
A metered fill uses a float to accurately measure the water level inside the dishwasher. This enables the dishwasher to fill to the correct level regardless of the water pressure. It also keeps the appliance from over-filling and, thus, wasting water.
A times fill is said to be a less precise method, since water pressure variation can affect it.
Flexible Loading Designs
It is advisable to consider the type and size of dishes commonly used before shopping for a rack system to fit your needs. You may even wish to take large or unusually shaped dishes that you use frequently as you shop for a dishwasher.
Dual Covered Detergent Dispenser
A detergent dispenser with a single closing lid indicating pre-wash and main wash detergent may add to the ease of use while protecting silverware from detergent damage.
Some dishwashers are controlled by electronic touch controls rather than an electromechanical timer. This allows one-touch ease of use and an electronic digital display shows dishwasher functions.
If you do not have space for an under-counter dishwasher, consider a portable model, These units have a full cabinet and can be moved via rollers. They connect to the kitchen faucet during use. Most models can be built-in later if desired.
see more article: