Dishwasher Buying Guide 2020

When your dishwasher not working, you might quickly be started to miss this time-saving appliance. Running a dishwasher and pressing start can help you save over 230 hours per year, compared to washing and drying in your hand, based on Energy Star.

Conventional built-in dishwashers, the most common type and what Consumer Reports buys and tests, are 24 inches wide. They sell for $225 to $2,200. Whatever you choose, consider using a detergent that cleaned up in our tests to get the most from your machine.

Dishwashers are offered in black, bisque, slate, white, stainless, and black stainless. Dishwashers once looked quite similar, but no more. Some companies have simplified the design and style, moving the controls to the top of the door so that they’re hidden when the door is closed.

Lab Tested Dishwasher for Your Home

We test dishwashers year-round, spending 28 hours evaluating each of them and identifying its features. Our testers load each dishwasher with 10 place settings of white ceramic dishes with baked-on food, then run it around the normal cycle (or its equivalent). When the cycle is finished, we record cycle time, and also the amount of water and energy used. We use a photo imaging machine to figure out precisely how clean each dish is, and we test how good each machine dries plastics and panelists judge noise levels.

A Dish Load of Brands

There are over 20 brands in our dishwasher ratings. You’ll see familiar names such as Amana, Kenmore, LG, Frigidaire, GE, Maytag, Whirlpool and Samsung is there too; and no, you don’t need to assemble the dishwasher yourself. Manufacturers from the high-end price range include Bosch, Dacor, Asko, Bertazzoni, Electrolux, Fisher & Paykel,  Kenmore Elite, GE Profile, Jenn-Air, KitchenAid, Miele, Thermador, and Viking. We try to keep up with brands that you will see in stores and online. That’s why we also test models from Fagor, Summit, Equator, Kucht, and Thor Kitchen.

Our brand reliability chart appears in the dishwasher ratings. It shows you which of the 10 major brands are the most and least reliable, based on a survey of more than 42,000 of our readers. In some cases, we may have too little data to include a brand in our findings.

Name Your Price

The depth and width of a conventional dishwasher is intended for any cavity measuring 24 x 24 ins. But fitting in a new dishwasher might be a challenge if you’ve tiled the ground or redone your counters, adjusting the height of the cavity. So before choosing, measure the space and consult the retailer for the full height range (and don’t forget to keep an eye on adjustment of the leveling feet).

When you go shopping, take a close look at how the dishwasher’s interior is the configured-the spacing of tines, as well as the positioning of the silverware racks and baskets. You might need a dishwasher that works depending on how you cook and eat.

Dishwashers for $500 or Less

However they aren’t the best performers in our tests, you may still have a dishwasher that is good at cleaning, and really good or even excellent at drying. Some products in this budget range now have a soil sensor, which adjusts the cycle’s time and water use to the load’s soil level, improving water efficiency. And some also have a stainless interior. So what is the catch? The features are basic: Adjustable racks and stainless-steel tubs are not a given. Wash times are usually long, and most dishwashers in this budget range are relatively noisy.

Dishwashers for $600 to $900

You can find a quieter machine, superb cleaning, and convenient features that might make it worth spending a little bit more, for example, adjustable racks and flexible flatware slots, as well as a stainless-steel tub, which tends to resist stains much better than plastic. A soil sensor is given.

Dishwashers for $1,000 or More

The styling changes and the dishwashers are fully loaded. You’ll no longer need to choose between useful features. Inventive features such as special wash zones for heavy soiled items and WiFi connectivity are added.

Dishwasher Drawers


They sometimes include two small, stacked compartments that you can use separately or simultaneously. But they are really expensive, and the models we tested have not performed well. Capacity is comparatively small, limiting how much you can wash at a time.

Find the Best Features

When you go shopping, look for features that can save you time, effort, and money.

Adjustable (or Extra) Racks and Loading Aids


Racks and shelves that move up and adjustable and down tines let you reconfigure the interior of the dishwasher. Silverware baskets with individual slots as well as a third upper rack allow you to organize the material, but the limitation is how large an item you can put in the second rack.

Soil Sensor


This adjusts the cycle’s time and water use for the load’s soil level, increasing water efficiency.

Rinse/Hold Cycle


This cycle helps you to rinse off dirty dishes when you are not ready to start a complete cycle (instead of letting a stubborn food mess get even much more stubborn). This perk can reduce odors as well as prevent food from setting once you stack up enough dirty dishes for any full load.

Wash Zones


Some models designate a particular portion of a dishwasher for heavily soiled items needing a special cycle. These zones do not normally run the whole time with specific models, it is only for a few minutes. In the labs, they do seem to work as promised.



The filter keeps wash water free of food that may be redeposited on clean dishes. There are two types: manual and self-cleaning. With self-cleaning filters, a grinder pulverizes the debris and flushes it down the drain. That is suitable but could be noisy. A manual clean filter does not have a grinder, so it is less noisy. But you have to clean it regularly to avoid odors, a job which will take only a few minutes.

Special Wash Cycles


Most dishwashers come with a minimum of three cycles: normal, light, and high (pans and containers), with a lot of newer models also including”express” or “quick” cycles that clean gently soiled loads within twenty minutes. Some offer soak/scrub, single-rack, sanitizing, pot-scrubber, china/very, or steam clean cycles too. The 3 fundamental cycles could be enough for many chores for baked-on food. A sanitizing option that raises hot and cold levels over the typical 140° F doesn’t always have better cleaning for dishes whether it lasts adequate, it’s accustomed to disinfect the dishwasher interior.

Stainless Steel Tub


Typically obtainable in mid-priced and higher-end units, stainless includes an inclination to prevent staining much better than light-colored plastic. Grey speckled plastic tubs help to camouflage stains and trim the all-inclusive costs. Any plastic tub should traverses lots of people have a dishwasher. Some more modern designs have hybrid stainless/plastic tubs.

Heated Dry

Dishwasher Buying Guide 2018

Budget-priced dishwashers typically dry within several hours after a wash cycle using just drainage and also residual heat inside the tub. Pay more and some models will either heat the water even more during the final rinse (to warm up the stainless tub) or using a heating element to dry the dishes perhaps along with a fan to circulate the warm air. These options increase convenience but additionally increase your electric bill.

Hidden Touchpad Controls

Dishwasher Buying Guide 2018

Controls mounted over the top edge of the door (and hidden when the door is closed) are absolutely about style. The downside: You usually can’t see cycle progress at a glance. Partially hidden controls are a wonderful compromise. you are going to know when the machine is running and, often, the remaining cycle time. Some only have an indicator light that lets you know the dishwasher is on.

The Noise Factor

Dishwasher Buying Guide 2018

Some dishwashers make a sound like an airplane landing, which may be annoying when wash cycles range between 90 minutes to about 3 hours. (Besides, we found no correlation between performance and time.) Manufacturers may display a decibel rating, however, average the sound level of a complete cycle (including the silent dry cycle), which may be misleading. CR’s panel of judges listens to each dishwasher, through its entire cycle, although that cycle takes 3 hours.

Our Selected Brands

Fisher & Paykel Dishwasher

SPT Dishwasher |SPT Countertop Dishwasher

Samsung Dishwasher

BOSCH Dishwasher

Frigidaire Dishwasher

GE Dishwasher

Kenmore Dishwasher

Amana Dishwasher

EdgeStar Dishwasher

Miele Dishwasher

Whirlpool Dishwasher

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