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A Buying Guide to Dishwashers

Here at Appliances Direct, we want you to make an informed decision before purchasing with us. That is why we have supplied you with a Dishwasher Buying Guide to help you make that decision. We want to make sure we supply you with as much information as possible so that you have a better understanding of the appliance you are about to buy.

A Dishwasher is an investment for your household so you want to be sure you are choosing the correct one to fulfil your needs and budget. It can be quite daunting as there are so many out there and they all have different functionalities. You will find that most Dishwashers these days are aimed at making the washing cycle more energy efficient and effective but all will have different features and functions. Don’t be overwhelmed!

What Type of Dishwasher?

The first thing you need to think about is where is your Dishwasher going to go? There are several types of Dishwasher you can choose from dependant on where it is going to be in your kitchen.

  • Regular and Slimline Dishwashers
    Both do exactly the same job and have the same height and depth but the regular dishwasher can fit more in per load where as the slimline dishwasher, the load is made smaller by approximately a third. Regular dishwashers are more ideal for a family and slimline dishwashers are better suited to an individual or couple. And they’re more economic as they don’t use as much water.
  • Freestanding Dishwashers
    Exactly what it says on the tin. It’s freestanding so you can place near enough anywhere you like.
  • Integrated Dishwashers
    Integrated dishwashers are completely hidden within your kitchen as your kitchen cupboard door will be attached to the dishwasher door so that it is completely concealed.
  • Semi Integrated Dishwashers
    Semi integrated dishwashers are almost completely concealed behind your kitchen cupboard doors except the control panel so it is readily accessible.

Before you buy your dishwasher, make sure that you measure the space that it is going in to make sure the one you are buying will actually fit! And make sure that you will be able to open the door fully to enable loading and unloading. Both the regular dishwasher and slimline are available in all the above options.

Energy Efficiency

Every dishwasher has an energy efficiency rating from A++ down to G. A++ is the best energy rating to have, it will be more sufficient and use less electricity and water therefore it will be cheaper to run. All dishwashers now use what is called ‘Cold Fill’ so it is gentler on the bank balance when it comes to pay your water bill. A lot of dishwashers will also have a time delay setting so that not only do you save on the cold water fill, you will save money on electricity as you can set it to run through the night when electricity is at its cheapest. Another great perk that the majority of modern dishwashers have is a flood protection sensor, some machines will detect the changes in the water pressure and the safety valve will cut off the water supply.

Washing Programmes & Features

All dishwasher programmes will vary slightly from machine to machine but there are usually a minimum of 3 settings on every machine usually including a rinse only cycle. The rinse only cycle is handy if you have a heavily soiled load and what to loosen the worst of the dirt before it dries or starts to smell. Other programmes include Main wash: This is the hottest programme usually between 55 and 65 degrees and is effective at removing stubborn grease and stuck food. Economy Wash: A cooler wash that is more economical and is better for lightly soiled crockery. Glass/Delicates: A gentler programme to ensure great cleaning but without damaging or chipping your more delicate glasses and plates. Half Load: Uses less water to wash a smaller load. Automatic: The dishwasher can assess how soiled the load is and will adjust the water needed and washing time appropriately. Drying: All dishwashers include a drying time within their cycle, they will use either residual heat from the main wash or through heated air usually circulated by a fan. Heated air is quicker and more efficient.

Making the Most of Your Dishwasher

To make the most of your dishwasher, you need to ensure that you stack it correctly, care and maintain it and be careful not to put in non dishwasher safe items. For the best cleaning results, make sure you stack your dishwasher correctly. Make sure that smaller and less soiled items are stacked in the top tray as the spray isn’t as intense but it will still get the job done. All the heavier items and more soiled plates should be stacked neatly on the bottom tray to allow for optimum cleaning. As well as using dishwasher tablets, all dishwashers will need rinse aid to assist in the drying process. Make sure you regularly clean the filter of waste and run dishwasher cleaner through the lines to prevent build up and limescale. Not all items are dishwasher safe so make sure you avoid putting in any items that are made from patterned or plain china as it may fade and chip, gold or silver trimmed china, lead crystal glasses, cast iron pans as they may rust and cutlery that is not stainless steel or has wooden, bone or pearl handles.


If you are planning to install the dishwasher yourself, then make sure you use the full instruction manual and make sure that you place all the plumbing so it is easily accessible in case of an emergency! Also make sure that you connect the cold water supply to the dishwasher and not the hot water! It would also be a good idea to fit an isolation valve to the dishwasher as well so you don’t have to cut off the main water supply if needed! If you don’t fancy fitting the dishwasher yourself then no need to worry. Here at Appliances Direct we offer a full installation service for just £19! That includes positioning the appliance in a room of your choice, disconnecting the old appliance, installation of the new appliance to an existing point, testing it to make sure all is working correctly and removal of all packaging. And for an extra £14 we will also take your old appliance away and recycle it safely. Don’t forget it’s very difficult to have your old appliance taken away by the council or at your local tip so this is the easiest and most cost effective way to ‘get rid’.

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