Owning the best dishwasher can be a life saver if you need clean dishes quickly, and if you simply can't be bothered to stand at the sink to wash up. We know, first-world problems eh?
While they’re all designed to do the same job, not every dishwasher is created equal – some are smart, others are cheap and then there are quiet models, too. There's also the integrated, freestanding and slimline dishwashers to compare and contrast so although a dishwasher will make cleaning a lot easier, finding one in the first place can be a little tricky.
To make the process of selecting the best dishwasher for your home slightly less overwhelming, we’ve cut through the jargon, studied the details, and checked out the reviews to find the very best makes and models around. You’ll find our handy round-up, including our pick of the best integrated dishwasher, below.
What is the best dishwasher?
If you're after the best dishwasher (in our opinion) we wouldn't hesitate to buy the Bosch Serie 4 SMS46II01G Standard Free Standing Dishwasher. Perfect for a range of kitchens, even open plan, this Bosch dishwasher has scored highly on noise levels, the epic cutlery tray and accommodating space for large pans.
Got a few more pennies (or couple of hundred pounds) spare? We really love the Miele G5222SC Standard Free Standing Dishwasher. Perfect for a fitted kitchen – this fully concealed model ticks all the must-have boxes mentioned above, and so many more. The space-age tech might not impress everyone but nobody can deny the sheer decadence of only having to add detergent every 20 cycles.
Today's best dishwasher buys
Bosch has an excellent reputation in the dishwashing world and this Bosch dishwasher comes highly rated online. Customers are particularly impressed on the noise front (or lack thereof) and also love how easy it is to use.
This Bosch model has a VarioDrawer at the top, and VarioFlex throughout. The drawer accommodates up to 13 place settings of cutlery and smaller utensils, such as whisks and ladles, so you no longer have to battle with the cutlery basket! And with the VarioFlex, the clue is in the name: the baskets can flex to accommodate pots and pans, or different shapes and sizes.
Keeping it simple
Although this dishwasher has a variety of well thought out additions, Bosch have kept the control panel simple to navigate. This way you can easily select the best programmes for your needs; from rinsing glass to removing baked on foods from pans.
There are plenty of dishwashers with half-load capability to save water and energy when you’ve just run out of spoons. This model takes care of it using sensors that automatically detect and adjust the water levels, so you can do any size load without having to worry about pouring your money down the drain.
We’re not gonna lie, this new Miele dishwasher is expensive. Some might say eye-wateringly so, which is why it's our no.2. But Miele’s reputation for longevity means you shouldn’t expect to replace it for a decade, or more, which makes the investment feel a little saner. And besides, it really is the bee’s knees.
You don’t have to be a geek to enjoy the smart features on offer. Our favourites are the automatic functions. The auto programme, for example, adapts settings to save time and energy. And the AutoOpen Drying function will automatically release the door at the end of a cycle to let fresh air get rid of any stray droplets.
Quality, every time
This dishwasher will make up to 14 place settings shine, and within 58 minutes if you need with the quick wash setting.
And it's not just outstanding cleaning for the first few months either. Like all Miele appliances, this model has been tested for the equivalent of 20 years’ use, so you can be confident that it’s made to last.
This dishwasher from Bush is a great option for households on a budget, or if space is limited in the kitchen or utility room.
This dishwasher has a total of ten place settings which makes it ideal for a small household.
It has a number of programmes to choose from, too. These include a useful 65c Wash programme which leaves all your crockery and cookware gleaming and perfectly dry in just 50 minutes. And there's also a quick wash which will clean your dirty dishes in 30 minutes.
This Slimline design is well suited to the smaller kitchen with reviewers remarking on how well it suits there needs, and space, for the price. What (some) do comment on, however, is that the bottom drawer is a little flimsy but are still over all impressed. This dishwasher also comes in a choice of colours so you can have white or black to suit your decor.
Slimline dishwashers save you 15cm of precious space in your kitchen but they can be surprisingly roomy inside. This SR256I00TE model can handle 10 place settings, making it perfect for a small family or couple. It’s fully loaded with features and boasts six programmes, including special treatment for glasses and a quieter setting.
Most dishwashers have one spray arm that rotates the width of the cavity. Doubling up with two smaller spray arms (side by side) not only achieves better coverage but can also help prevent that annoying clash between big pan and spray arm that stops the rotation working effectively. Clever. And the proof is in the pudding, or pudding dish as it were – sparkling clean dishes from top to bottom, according to the many, many gushing online reviews.
When space is at a premium, it’s essential to make the most of what you’ve got. This dishwasher has varioFlex Plus and varioDrawer Pro, which are rather Germanic ways of saying they can be shifted and adjusted to suit. The bottom basket can hold two rows of glasses, while both baskets have multiple fold-down dividers to accommodate bigger items.
Divide and conquer
Another smart features is intensiveZone, which produces a far more powerful spray on the bottom basket for dealing with the dirtiest of dishes. Meanwhile, it’s business as usual on the top basket, where delicate glassware and china mugs will be cleaned more gently.
This is our pick of the best integrated dishwasher you can buy – hence our big yellow Real Homes Loves badge –, and for good reasons too.
In a rush? There's a quick cycle which takes just 29 minutes.
You can wash up to 13 place settings in one load with 6 wash programmes and 4 temperatures to play around with – it has everything you need to get your crockery looking good as new.
Not only does this machine have an energy rating of A+ there's an Eco-Wash setting which takes 170 minutes, too.
The machine can also be controlled via an app on your phone, so you can turn it on during your lunchtime at work and it'll be clean for when you arrive home. The best part? Once the cycle is finished, the dishwasher will automatically open to allow your crockery to air dry.
How to choose the best dishwasher
Much like it is when buying the best washing machine to clean your laundry, honing in on the best dishwasher requires some consideration into what you envisage the appliance to look like in your home.
Integrated or freestanding?
The most important decision you need to make when choosing a dishwasher is whether you want a model that’s integrated or freestanding. If you’re choosing new appliances as part of a complete kitchen refit, you’ll create a more cohesive finish by opting for an integrated design where a furniture panel conceals the machine. However, a freestanding version may be a better choice if you’re fitting it retrospectively, or if you’re looking for a larger model.
Look out for a cutlery drawer. It’s tucked out of the way, comfortable to load and you won’t accidentally slice your digits when emptying. Baskets are bulky and awkward by comparison (not to mention potentially dangerous when you leave the drawer out with sharp items pointing up).
Automatic sensors take the effort out of deciding which wash programme is best. Press the button, it cleans until the water runs clear – job done.
And finally, any tech that produces entirely dry contents. Automatic door opening, steam sucking or clever minerals, it doesn't really matter how it’s achieved, as long as you don’t have to towel everything off before it can go in the cupboards.
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