In a world reigned by computers, smartphones and tablets, a dishwasher seems like one of the most insignificant purchases. You know you need it in your home, but you figure it would be the easiest thing to go to a store and just buy one. But would it?
Surprise, surprise, said store will greet you with a thousand different makes and models from which you will have to choose. Do you know what to look for? Let’s explore the qualities a good dishwasher should have.
Of course, first of all comes the size so do your homework before you go out shopping. Measure the space your new dishwasher will occupy carefully so you wouldn’t have to rearrange your entire kitchen afterwards. On the same not, but also related to the energy the dishwasher will use up, think carefully about whether you need a large dishwasher. Most big models have room for up to twelve place settings. Do you wash that many dishes frequently? Because if you don’t, it would be much better to buy a smaller model.
When you think about a dishwasher, you probably imagine not having to put a single dish in the sink ever again. However, with most dishwasher models you will have to pre-rinse every plate before putting it in as the food leftovers, tiny though they might be, could damage the machine. In order for that fantasy to become reality you need to look for a dishwasher with a built-in disposal unit.
A feature that depends on your eating habits is the dishwasher’s ability to heat the water to a certain temperature. If you eat a lot of greasy food, for example, you know that cold water will not be able to clean the plates. Instead, your dishwasher should be able to heat the water to a high enough temperature. That, of course, brings power consumption concerns with it – the more power your dishwasher spends on heating water, the higher power bills you will have to pay.
Which brings us to one of the most important features – the number of available cycles. Yes, it is true that a machine that comes with lots of different cycles is more expensive. That having been said, that machine will pay for itself over the years. If you cook a lot, for example, you will be nicely surprised by the heavy cycles that can handle pots and pans with ease. If you don’t cook, however, and use less dishes in a day, you will be delighted by the half-cycles which use up less water and less energy. There are also gentler cycles you can use if you’ve used the china plates or crystal glassware, rinsing cycles for the plates you are unsure about, and much more. As long as you choose the cycle properly you are saving time and money.
Last but not least, make sure you are comfortable with the way the racks are placed inside the machine. How much room does it offer for cups and glasses, for plates, for cutlery, etc? Will it hold your favourite pan? Is there enough room for your biggest pot?
A dishwasher is quite a significant investment and it will be with you for several years. So make sure you are well-prepared before you go shopping to save yourself a second visit to the store.