A dishwasher is a significant investment for every home. Many people thus take their time to shop for one and will consider a number of factors before identifying the best one for their specific needs. Dishwashers can last for many years (sometimes more than ten years), a reason you don’t want to make a rushed decision on the same. You want to choose only the best electrical appliances for your home, including dishwashers. Outlined below are some of the essential factors you need to consider when shopping for a dishwasher:
1. Long-Term Cost (Energy and Water)
The water flow rate and how much energy the dishwasher uses per cycle, or year, can help you decide on the best one for your home. Energy Star-rated dishwashers are the most energy efficient as they use less energy than non-rated ones. Aside from this, you’ll need to check how much water (including efficiency) the dishwasher uses per cycle. It is also worth noting that a larger dishwasher will use more energy and water compared to a smaller one. Choose one that fits your family’s needs and size.
There are two types/categories of dishwashers on the market today, compact and standard-size dishwashers. Compact dishwashers, commonly referred to as countertops, are built into a kitchen cabinet, typically 18 inches wide. This type is sufficient for a small family and can hold up to 6 serving pieces in 8-place settings. According to research, compact dishwashers with Energy Star certification use up to 3.2 gal/cycle and between 113 and 203kWh/yr or even less. The compact size makes it an excellent option for smaller families, a preferred option for most.
Standard dishwashers are the go-to option for those who prefer style to efficiency. Standards are about 24 inches wide and built into cabinetry like compacts. They can hold at least 6 servicing pieces at 8 place settings, full of rack configurations and several additional features. A standard dishwasher might be your best option if you have a relatively large family and/or if you are not worried about energy or water savings. The best-rated and Energy Star-certified standard uses up to 3. 5gal/cycle and up to 270kWh/yr.
4. Initial Cost
If you are looking to save some money on a dishwasher or working with limited space, you can choose between a countertop and a portable dishwasher. These are relatively smaller and more compact, with only 4-6 place settings – best for dorm rooms or single persons. It is also worth noting that the dishwasher uses an adapter to connect to the sink faucet and hot water, with the drain hose emptying used water into the sink. It is worth noting that portable/countertop dishwashers aren’t as efficient as compacts. This is because it uses an average of 3 gallons of water in a cycle and up to 203kWh/yr.
5. Extra Features
Some dishwashers may come with additional features for improved energy and water efficiency. Most of them have soil sensors that allow them to adjust water spray effectively. Some also come with a half-load option, meaning only the top rack will be sprayed in the cycle. Other features to look out for in these dishwashers include eco-was and speed wash, which run for a shorter cycle and use less water. Dishwashers with an air-dry option may also be an appealing feature too.
6. Noise Levels
Some dishwashers can be noisier than others, particularly older ones. Unless noise isn’t a bother, it would be best to go for the quieter ones instead. Many newer dishwashers only produce between 40 and 50 decibels, which is manageable considering a refrigerator compressor produces about 40 decibels.
How Does A Dishwasher Work
Dishwashers haven’t evolved much since they were invented. They, however, have been upgraded a bit for improved efficiency and to suit modern needs.