When you're in the market for a new dishwasher, you may find yourself overwhelmed by all of your options, especially if you've never shopped for one before. Following some basic tips and guidelines can help you decide what matters most to you in a dishwasher so you can purchase an appliance you'll be happy with for years to come.
Size and Type
Most dishwashers are 24 inches wide and are meant to be placed in your kitchen permanently, usually under the counter. Some brands do make 18-inch dishwashers for small spaces, but you won't have as many options if you're looking for a smaller unit. If you're buying a dishwasher for an apartment or rental home, look into portable units on wheels or countertop dishwashers that attach to your sink. These non-permanent dishwashers are typically much smaller than a standard appliance, but they can also be quite inexpensive and might be just what you need if you're short on space and are only washing dishes for one or two people.
No matter what size and type you choose, make sure to check out the placement of the racks and the capacity to make sure it will be able to accommodate your normal load size. If you typically wash very large loads of dishes, look for space-saving features such as utensil racks mounted on the inside of the door rather than ones that rest in the dish racks to make the most out of the space inside.
Cleaning Power and Cycle Options
Once you've decided on a size and style, cleaning power will likely be your next primary concern. Expensive doesn't always mean better when it comes to how well a dishwasher performs its main function, so look at reviews and talk to an appliance sales associate for help deciding which units will clean like you need them too. High-end dishwashers tend to have a lot of extra cleaning cycles, such as cycles for glassware or sanitizing cycles. For most people, settings for a gentle, normal and heavy wash will be enough for everyday dishes.
Take a look at the noise rating while you're checking out cleaning power as well. Most modern dishwashers have a noise rating of 50 decibels or about the same as a normal conversation, but some mid-tier and high-end models have even quieter ratings if noise is a primary concern.
Dishwashers can be an expensive appliance to run, particularly if you're using heavy wash settings and heated drying features. Many dishwashers have an air dry or "Econo" setting that turns off the heating element during the drying process to help save energy and lower running costs. Dishwashers that have a quick wash setting are also helpful if you're running a load of lightly soiled dishes. Some also have a delayed start feature so you can load your dishwasher and set it to run later if you live in an area where energy costs are higher during certain times of the day.
If you're still unsure what type of dishwasher would best suit your needs, talk to an appliance sales associate about what you're looking for so they can help you shop around and find all the features that are most important to you at a price you can afford.
Contact a company like Hudson Appliance Center for more information and assistance.