How to choose your perfect dishwasher
Banish dirty dishes and hang up your washing up gloves with our guide to buying a new dishwasher…
A few decades ago, cleaning up after a meal took almost as long as making it. Fast forward to today and the humble dishwasher does the hard work of keeping our cups, pans and plates clean, giving us more time to enjoy the things that matter.
Did you know you could use up to 122 litres of water when washing dishes by hand?
A dishwasher with an A+++ rating could use as little as 6 litres of water per wash – such as the AEG FFE83700PM
We look at whether it’s worth upgrading to a new dishwasher, which model will suit you best and answer the age-old question of how to stack a dishwasher…
What do I need to know when buying a dishwasher?
Before you start shopping, you’ll need to consider:
- Space – full-size dishwashers are about 60cm wide, slimline models are around 45cm wide and compact models are designed to replace a kitchen drawer or sit on a countertop.
- Stand-alone or integrated? Many models come in both options.
- You don’t want the remnants of your fish dinner from two nights ago making your kitchen smell. If you live alone, a smaller dishwasher may be a better option than a full-size model.
- Budget – higher end models often cost less to run as they’re more energy-efficient.
Do I need to upgrade my dishwasher?
If you’re finding that your dishwasher just can’t cope with crusty pasta bakes and day-old porridge, it may be time to upgrade.
Although it may seem like a big upfront cost, modern dishwashers are much more energy and water efficient than older models, so you’re likely to save money on your energy and water bills.
Top dishwashers for every kitchen
Whatever your kitchen or family size, we’ve got a dishwasher to suit.
1. The easy stacker
If you have a bad back or struggle with loading your current dishwasher, the AEG ComfortLift will do the heavy lifting for you.
Its award-winning design includes an innovative lifting mechanism which lifts the lower basket to the same height as the upper basket. You can unload all your plates and pans without having to bend over.
There are 8 programmes, including a 30-minute quick wash and an auto half load, which detects how full the dishwasher is and adjusts the water and energy use accordingly.
If arguments on how to stack the dishwasher run rife in your house, it’s time to settle things once and for all…
5 commandments of dishwasher loading
- Mugs and glasses on top, plates underneath. Sounds simple right? At least that’s what you think until your teenager stacks their cereal bowl in the plate rack. Still, at least they tried…
- Don’t let your spoons spoon – if you have a cutlery basket, forks and spoons should go in handle down and knives handle up. Or make life easier and buy a dishwasher with a cutlery tray.
- Anything that collects water should be upside down – bowls, cups, pans and ladles all fall into this category.
- Tupperware on the top – the heating element in most dishwashers is at the bottom, so it’s better for plastics to be on the top rack.
- Some things are better hand washed – putting your wife’s family antique gold leaf china or your expensive kitchen knives in the dishwasher may be an unforgivable offence.
2. The energy-efficient glass sparkler
Older dishwashers often struggle to dry dishes thoroughly, leaving plastic items wet and water stains on glass and china.Not any more. The Bosch Serie 6 dishwasher dries as well as it cleans, meaning your dishes, glasses and lunchboxes can go straight from dishwasher to cupboard without going near a tea towel. It dries plastic items too – no more time wasted drying all your tupperware.
The AquaSensor feature uses light beams to detect food residue and grease and adjusts the water usage to give perfectly clean dishes. Its A+++ rating makes it top of the efficiency list, helping you save money on your bills.
3. The small (but perfectly formed) dishwasher
With a slimline model, no kitchen is too small for a dishwasher, and you’ll never have to play dirty-dish Jenga on the countertop again.
The Bosch Serie 2 Slimline dishwasher is exceptionally quiet, making it ideal for small kitchens and open-plan apartments.
Although it takes up less space than a standard cupboard, with a capacity of 9 plate settings, it’s big enough for families or dinner parties and you can adjust the height of the top shelf to fit large trays or tall glasses.