Dishwashers are available for every budget, with more expensive models generally offering add-on features such as extra quiet settings, heated dry and self-cleaning filters. Consumers can find dishwashers to fit any kitchen space, and those who are price and economically conscious should look for an Energy Star rated dishwasher.
With strict Energy Star ratings, a top-rated dishwasher uses less water and energy than dishwashers that are not Energy Star rated, which can save you more than five percent on energy usage and 15 percent on water while still standing up to grimy grease, dried egg and other stubborn stains.
Top 10 Best Rated Dishwashers
Kenmore brand has over 100 years of experience in home appliances, including kitchen, laundry, floor and grills. The company provides both built-in and portable dishwashers, with feature like quiet clean, heated dry and more.
|Read 535 Reviews|
The Whirlpool Corporation, commonly known as Whirlpool, was founded in St. Joseph, Michigan in 1911. The company makes a range of home appliances, including dishwashers, which are available in a wide variety of sizes and styles.
|Read 362 Reviews|
KitchenAid is a company that first sold electric mixers and blenders. The company expanded to sell dishwashers to homeowners in 1949, and today, it sells a range of both standard and premium dishwashers in a selection of styles.
|Read 827 Reviews|
LG is an appliance company that was founded in 1959 in Korea, with American headquarters that are located in Lexington, Ohio. The company makes dishwashers that are known for their adjustability, quietness and sleek design.
|Read 301 Reviews|
General Electric was founded in 1892 in Schenectady, New York, and is headquartered today in Fairfield, Connecticut. The company makes a range of household appliances, including portable and built-in dishwashers.
|Read 466 Reviews|
Maytag is a home appliance company that began manufacturing appliances in 1893 as the Maytag Washing Machine Company. Today, Maytag sells dishwashers for a variety of homes and budgets and in a range of colors and styles.
|Read 751 Reviews|
Jenn-Air is a home appliances company based in Benton Harbor, Michigan. The company has been making appliances since 1961, and it offers a range of products for home kitchens, including a line of high-quality dishwashers.
|Read 46 Reviews|
Viking Range Corporation became famous for their ultra-luxury gas ranges, but today, they produce a variety of home appliances, including dishwashers. Headquartered in Greenwood, MS, the company has been in business since 1987.
|Read 68 Reviews|
Frigidaire, an appliance company originally known for manufacturing refrigeration products, produces a selection of dishwashers for homes. The company is headquartered in Augusta, Georgia, and was founded in 1918.
|Read 306 Reviews|
Sears, originally Sears, Roebuck & Co., is a company that is famous for selling a wide range of goods, including clothing, home goods and appliances. It offers a range of dishwashers for residential customers at affordable prices.
|Read 312 Reviews|
What features matter most?
Dishwashers can range from inexpensive models to major luxury appliances, depending on a variety of factors, including added features and brand.
- Discount dishwashers: There are some nice options at a discount price, though you may sacrifice quiet operation to find a machine that really gets dishes clean at this price point.
- Mid-level dishwashers: Many outperform luxury models and keep the noise down, so before throwing money at the dirty dish problem, be sure to look at a range of mid-level models.
- Luxury dishwashers: Some of these are so quiet you can't hear them running, but the price can be quite high.
You might pay a bit more for a top-rated Energy Star dishwasher, but what you pay up front, you can make back in running costs over the life of the appliance.
- Lower utility bills: Energy Star-rated appliances use less electricity. In fact, dishwasher models manufactured before 1994 might add as much as $35 per month in electric usage.
- Save on water: Newer, more water-efficient dishwashers save an average of 1,600 gallons over the lifetime of the machine, which works out to a monetary savings for you and a more environmentally friendly home.
- Non-rated washers: While dishwashers with no Energy Star rating may come with a lower price tag, they cost you more in the long run, so it pays to spend a little more up front.
Dishwasher models vary in noise level, with the range running from below 46 decibels to above 51 decibels. A noisy dishwasher can disrupt other activities in the area.
- More than 50 decibels: These noisy dishwashers produce as much sound as several people engaged in a lively conversation. This could leave you turning the volume way up on the TV or shouting to have a conversation with friends and family.
- More than 46 decibels: This moderate sound level offers a compromise between the loudest models and the quietest. Typically, they are quiet enough not to interrupt most daily activities, particularly if the kitchen is separate from other living spaces.
- Less than 46 decibels: Often referred to as whisper soft, these quiet machines produce no more noise than a whisper, making them ideal for open floor plans, apartments or other areas where any noise pollution can be a problem.
Dishwashers come in sizes that range from countertop versions designed for flatware to deep tubs that can keep up with a commercial kitchen.
- Countertop: This style of dishwasher is ideal for an apartment or kitchen that does not have space for dishwasher installation. It typically handles flatware for up to four people, and can even do glasses, though that may take a second cycle.
- Under the counter: Built-in dishwashers are permanently installed in the kitchen. They need a recessed location under the countertop with enough clearance not to interfere with traffic flow.
- Free standing: While they still need a considerable amount of space, a free-standing dishwasher usually has wheels to make it easy to move, and it may have hookups designed to go on during use and off for storage.
Modern dishwashers have everything from self-cleaning filters to heated drying. Evaluate what you need your dishwasher to do before choosing options.
- Self-cleaning filter: Self-cleaning filters add more noise during operation, but they help minimize clogged pipes, which can cause a leaking tub. With a manual-clean filter, you need to remember to take it out and clean it regularly to remove trapped food.
- Heated dry: Without a heated drying cycle, water spots on dish ware are common. Make sure heated drying is optional, since it extends the cycle time and uses more energy to operate.
- Soil sensors: Not sure what cycle is appropriate for a particular load of dishes? Machines with soil sensors can determine how dirty dishes are and adjust water pressure to match.
The longer it takes for the dishwasher to clean a load of dishes, the more dishes pile up while it runs. However, energy-efficient dishwashers tend to have extended cycles. Make sure the dishwasher has a selection of cycles so you can choose the best one for each load.
- Less than an hour: Some models have a fast-clean cycle that can have dishes sparkling in just over half an hour. This usually doesn't include drying time.
- Hour and a half: At approximately an hour and a half, many dishwashers can deliver clean and dry dishes, though not for heavily soiled loads. Those can take more than two hours.
- Three hours: A dishwasher can take longer than three hours to complete a wash and dry, depending on the wash style, number of rinse cycles and average drying time. Run these dishwashers well in advance of needing the clean dishes.
What are different types of dishwashers?
These traditional models have a permanent location and connection to the plumbing and electricity. You lose a bit of storage in exchange, but the convenience can be worth it.
Like built-in dishwashers, this style needs a permanent installation, but the multi-drawer option lets you run a single drawer at a time and choose different cycles for each drawer. This makes them ideal for washing pots and pans at the same time you wash flatware.
These dishwashers are on wheels and have a sturdy butcher block top, they run by hooking it up to a kitchen faucet. You can wheel them in to use and tuck them away afterward.
Usually set up next to the sink, these models hook up to the kitchen faucet. They are small and best used for flatware, so they make a good choice for apartments and small kitchens.
Restaurants and other commercial kitchens need high-volume washing. For their purposes, commercial dishwashers have a very high capacity and a sterilization cycle.
Who's it for?
No one wants to spend hours cleaning up after dinner, a party or the holidays, and a dishwasher automates a lot of the cleanup.
When you live in an apartment, storage is usually at a premium, so it works well to have a dishwasher and keep the number of dishes low.
The more people you live with, the more dishes need to be washed every day. With a dishwasher, even large families can enjoy a sit-down meal with less cleanup time.
Restaurants serve hundreds of plates each day, so they need high-output dishwashers to keep the kitchen running smoothly.
Jenn-Air has been known for quality in the luxury appliance industry since the release of the downdraft cooktop in 1961. The company is a leader in producing appliances with efficient performance and innovative technology.
- Best for Homeowners, apartment renters and families
KitchenAid has been a household name since the release of its first stand mixer in 1919. The company has nearly 100 years of experience crafting kitchen appliances to an exacting standard.
- Best for Families, homeowners and apartment renters
Since it’s founding as the Edison Electric Light Company in 1878, GE has been a household name in appliances. The company's innovation keeps it at the forefront of home design with smart products and integrated technologies.
- Best for Apartment renters, homeowners and families
LG was founded as GoldStar in 1958 in Korea. It is one of the world's largest producers of consumer electronics and household appliances.
- Best for Businesses, homeowners and families
Founded in 1916 under the name Guardian Frigerator Company, it became Frigidaire in 1919 and went on to be the most well-known name in refrigerators. As a General Motors subsidiary, Frigidaire also manufactured some of the first washing machines and has now branched into whole-home automation.
- Best for Homeowners, apartment renters, families
Acquired by Whirlpool in 2006, the Maytag brand is one known for dependability. With more than 100 years of experience in the home appliance space, Maytag is a familiar brand.
- Best for Homeowners, businesses and families
Whirlpool is the leading manufacturer of home appliances. It operates in more than 170 countries and has global sales totaling over $20 billion.
- Best for Homeowners, apartment renters, families and businesses
Founded in 1986, Viking brings commercial cooking into the residential home. The majority of its product line is made in Greenwood, Mississippi.
- Best for Homeowners, families, businesses
For more than 70 years, Samsung has been an industry leader across all technology markets. Its investments in medicine, consumer electronics, finance, plant construction and more make it an all-in-one brand.
- Best for Homeowners and families
Originally Roebuck & Company, Sears started in 1886 as a chain of department stores. For more than 100 years, Sears has retained a position as one of the five top-selling department stores in America.
- Best for Homeowners, apartment renters, families and businesses
Haier is one of the largest home appliance producers in the world. It has more than 36 million customers worldwide.
- Best for Homeowners and families
Information in this guide is general in nature and is intended for informational purposes only; it is not legal, health, investment or tax advice. ConsumerAffairs.com makes no representation as to the accuracy of the information provided and assumes no liability for any damages or loss arising from its use.
11 – 12 Best Rated Dishwashers
Samsung is a Korean company known for making high-tech appliances and electronic devices. The company's dishwashers are known for their energy-saving properties as well as their advanced features like WiFi and ultra-quiet cycles.
|Read 576 Reviews|
Haier is known as one of the largest global manufacturers of appliances, and their United States headquarters is located in the heart of New York. The company produces a variety of dishwashers intended for residential kitchens.
|Read 9 Reviews|