In the time before dishwashers, we had to scrub, rinse, and dry our pots, pans, and dishes all by hand. It took up time, wasted more water than was necessary, and probably what hits home the most is that it was annoying. But ever since the dishwasher was invented, we have spared ourselves countless hours in front of the sink. Time that is better spent relaxing or socialising with family and friends.
But what if you are in the market for a new dishwasher? They can be pretty expensive, so just how do you shop for a dishwasher that you know will do the job without buying the most expensive one on the market?
That’s why we here at homify have put together a list of six things you should look out for when buying a new dishwasher. Follow this guideline, and you'll be sure to find a great dishwasher that does not break the bank.
The first thing you should be aware of is a dishwasher’s ability to actually clean your dishes. If you think every dishwasher on the market can clean and dry your dishes, many consumer reports beg to differ.
To avoid buying a faulty machine, look for clean and drying settings that fit your specific needs. For instance, if you wash your dishes every time before loading them in the washer, you do not need to buy a machine with pre-rinse or pot scrubbing settings. Instead, you should look for a model with a basic cleaning setting to save a bit of money.
However, if you don’t pre-rinse, look for a model that has a heavy scrub setting. Otherwise you’ll end up putting the dishes through the wash more than once, which burns through electricity, water, and your cleaning agent supply.
Most modern dishwashers go far beyond just washing and drying. As we just mentioned, some come with pre-wash settings or heavy duty pot and pan settings. New dishwasher models can come fully loaded with tons of features, but be aware that the more a dishwasher can do, the more the price increases dramatically.
You can have, for example, stainless steel tubs that resist stains and look much more stylish than plastic tubs. You could opt for a self-cleaning model that, as the name suggests, has a built-in cleaning system that empties the filter where the food waste is collected and cleans the interior. You can also buy a washer that has a sanitizing feature that removes the germs and bacteria that somehow survive through the cycling intense water heat.
The most important thing is to be aware of the features you do and don't require before shopping, so you don't end up being persuaded by a salesman to get something you don’t necessarily need.
If you happen to own a dishwasher that was made before 1995, you are paying about an extra £30 each year for electricity and wasting about 40 litres of water with every wash. Buying an energy saving dishwasher will save you an estimated 5,000 litres of water over its entire life span.
Even if your dishwasher is not that old, you can still save some money by buying an energy efficient machine. Current dishwashers that have been built according to the latest standards are generally eight percent more efficient than models that have been built before 2012.
Models like Energy Star tend to be a bit more expensive, so if you don’t want to dish out that much money, you can at least check out the energy guide label on a prospective machine. The label compares the annual cost of operation of various models on the market.
The average full sized dishwasher is 60 centimetres wide, while the smaller ones are in the range of 45 centimetres. So, if you’re not sure which one you should get, think about these following points:
A dishwasher should give you enough room to stack your dirty dishes. Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Well, if you cook using large mixing bowls or large baking pans, shop around for a washer that has a lot of room inside. Also keep the size of the cutlery basket in mind, as well as the number of shelves in the washer.
Adjustable shelving is incredibly useful, and so is the ability to raise a flap over the cutlery basket to make room for larger utensils. There is no reason you should buy an enormous two hour cycle washer if you don’t cook a lot or deal with many dirty plates.
How much noise your machine makes is of great importance to many homeowners. On average, the cheaper models tend to be louder. If you don’t buy the proper machine for your specific household needs, a rumbling washer could disturb the quiet downtime someone in your family has planned, or silence parts of the movie you are trying to watch in the adjacent living room.
When it comes to buying the perfect washer, the key to balancing the price and features is to think about where it is located in relation to other parts of your home. If you happen to have a bedroom in a room next to the kitchen, it might be more beneficial for your everyday happiness to spend a little extra money and get a quieter machine. That way you never have to worry about being disturbed by a loud washer, no matter what time of day.
Now, let’s get down to the prices. As we have discussed, dishwasher price depends on size, energy use, and features. Of course it goes without saying that the smaller ones are the cheapest and they can range anywhere from £100 to £200. Some of these smaller ones come with pretty advantageous features, so don’t necessarily say to yourself that “you get what you pay for,” because it isn’t always true.
The average sized washers that do not have any of those fancy features range from about £200 to £300. A benefit of buying an average sized washer, if you can, is that many of the bigger and better made ones come with a warranty, which you should always buy if given the option – just in case. The largest dishwashers with the most features are quite obviously the priciest—they start from about £500 and can keep going up to £1,000. You should be just fine with your choice in a washer if the size fits your home and you can get an energy efficient machine.
If you liked this article, check out how to make money-saving, energy efficient changes to your bathroom!