For some households, dishwashers are a key helper in the kitchen. While the device is used irregularly in single households, it cleans the dishes in large families at least once a day. There are households in which plates, glasses, cups and pots are no longer cleaned by hand. In addition to the enormous saving of time, modern dishwashers score with minimal energy and water consumption. Those who take a little more time choosing the right dishwasher will benefit from individual settings and smart washing programs.
Whether semi-integrated, built-under, single dishwasher or decorable: In the following guide we explain the most important technical terms and criteria that decide when buying a dishwasher. Our dishwasher comparison is available beforehand. When comparing 10 popular models, the main focus is on energy and water consumption, the programs and the innovative functions that pay off in everyday kitchen life. You can find out at the end of the guide whether the Stiftung Warentest or Öko Test have already carried out a dishwasher test.
1. AEG FSB41600Z dishwasher with AirDry function
You can order the dishwasher AEG FSB41600Z in different versions. You get this model free-standing, partially integrated, as a base or fully integrated. The manufacturer relies on the Sensorlogic load sensor system for the dishwasher. According to the provider, it should automatically adjust the temperature, duration and amount of water. Based on these values, AutoSense technology chooses the right program. With this model, you can start the flushing process directly or set a specific start time within the next 24 hours.
A special feature of this dishwasher is the AirDry function. The manufacturer promises you exceptional drying results. For this, the machine dries with a natural air flow after the rinsing process. This should enable residue-free drying of the dishes. This process is supplemented by an automatic opening of the door so that residual moisture can escape.
Automatic loading detection is still available for model AEG from the AEG brand. With the existing short program, you can only clean lightly soiled dishes and cutlery. The intensive program lets you remove massive dirt from your dishes or cutlery. You can access a total of five different programs and four temperature levels.
2. Bauknecht BUC 3C26 X – built-in dishwasher
With the BUC 3C26 X, Bauknecht supplies a built-in dishwasher of energy efficiency class A ++ with an average energy consumption of 265 kilowatt hours. Special sensors measure the degree of pollution in the water and adjust the water consumption of the machine. The temperature is set automatically. According to the manufacturer, they benefit from an impeccable cleaning and drying effect and energy and water consumption savings of 40 percent. The capacity is 14 kilograms.
In addition, the BUC 3C26 X only invests as much time as necessary to wash the dishes. With a child lock, Bauknecht prevents unintended access to the programs during the runtime. According to the provider, this ensures comprehensive protection in the family kitchen. Full water protection also offers an extra plus in terms of safety. A safety inlet hose reinforced with a mechanical safety valve is intended to provide permanent protection against water damage.
Many people wash their dishes at night. For this purpose, Bauknecht has developed a night-time washing program that is said to be one of the quietest in a dishwasher comparison at European level.
The interior of the BUC 3C26 X has four foldable cup racks and four plate segments that can be folded down. In addition, there is the removable cutlery basket. The multi-zone cleaning function focuses on the upper and lower rinsing basket. Whether small amounts of dishes or heavily soiled pots and pans : the dishwasher always uses the right amount of water and energy for cleaning. The express program is suitable for lightly soiled dishes and does not take more than 30 minutes to complete.
3. Fully integrated dishwasher Bosch SPV25CX03E with glass 40 ° C program
The fully integrated dishwasher Bosch SPV25CX03E should be characterized by its quiet operation. The sound level is a maximum of 46 decibels. This model also offers you a special drying mode. With this option you should be able to carry out an extra thorough drying if the load is difficult to dry.
Another special feature of this dishwasher is the glass 40 ° C program. According to the manufacturer, this is an extra gentle washing program. This should ensure that high-quality crystal glasses are cleaned gently and gently. At the same time, good drying and a brilliant sheen should be achieved. This should enable a lower temperature, an adjustment of the rinse aid temperature and an extended drying phase.
This dishwasher is also characterized by the VarioSpeed Plus program. According to the manufacturer, this option should enable a complete load of dishes to be cleaned and dried quickly in a short time. The flushing time is reduced by up to 66 percent at the push of a button. There is also a height-adjustable upper basket that offers additional space, especially for tall items of crockery. A red info light on the floor should show you whether your device is switched on or off.
4. The Siemens iQ300 SN436S04AE undercounter dishwasher with vario baskets
The built-in dishwasher Siemens iQ300 SN436S04AE can be found in energy efficiency class A ++ and consumes an average of 258 kilowatt hours per year and 2,660 liters of water. Your actual energy consumption depends on the individual intensity of use. There is further energy saving potential with the Eco 50 degree Celsius program with 0.9 kilowatt hours. The undercounter kitchen appliance has six programs and three special functions.
The most important features at a glance:
- Machine maintenance program
- Aqua sensor
- Load sensor
- Heat exchanger
- Automatic cleaner safety
- AquaStop with a lifetime guarantee
- Exchange flush technology
- Parental controls
- Intense zone
- Extra dry
According to the manufacturer, the display in the middle ensures a good overview of the current washing programs and simplifies operation. This model has the standard width of 60 centimeters including base plate. If cleaning is not fast enough for you, you can use the varioSpeedPlus program, which is up to 66 percent faster when cleaning dishes.
Siemens has developed an AquaStop® safety system for its dishwashers to protect them from water damage. The manufacturer assumes liability for safety. For plastic tableware, we recommend the extra dry program, which offers an extended drying phase at higher temperatures so that all materials become dry.
The vario baskets are a special feature of this model. These offer sufficient scope for loading. The upper basket has up to three foldable and divisible shelves and two folding spikes. The lower basket is equipped with two folding spikes. You can also adjust the height of the upper basket in three stages.
5. Bosch SMU46KS00E – dishwasher with low energy consumption and noise level
The Bosch SMU46KS00E dishwasher is primarily characterized by its low energy consumption and quiet operation. The device from energy efficiency class A ++ has an annual energy consumption of 262 kilowatt hours on average with 280 cleaning cycles. The manufacturer puts the noise level at 46 decibels. Although the EcoSilenceDrive motor works quietly and economically, it should still be powerful. Bosch puts the annual water consumption at 2,100 liters.
For the installation in your own kitchen, you should calculate according to the manufacturer with a 57.3 cm deep worktop. The patented AquaStop system provides the necessary security against water damage, which should score with a guarantee over the entire lifespan of the dishwasher. Inside, the Aqua sensors recognize the degree of pollution and use as much water and energy as is necessary.
The following information can be found on the dishwasher display:
- Delay start
- Remaining run indicator
The six programs available offer temperatures between 40 degrees Celsius and 70 degrees Celsius.The load sensor is particularly practical in daily use. This should make it possible to start the dishwasher with a half full load. The Bosch SMU46KS00E calculates the water consumption downwards and ensures that no water is wasted.
6. Bosch SMU46CS01E series 4 dishwasher – energy efficient with class A +++
You can order the dishwasher series SMU46CS01E from the Bosch series 4 in different versions. This device is available as a free-standing model, as an integrated variant, as a base or fully integrated. The stainless steel device not only has the EcoDrying function, but also the Auto, Eco, Glass, Intensive, Night program and Quick programs.
Other features include an AquaSensor and AquaStop. The AquaSensor automatically detects the degree of dirt on the dishes in order to set the corresponding water consumption. This saves water and protects the environment. According to Bosch, the AquaStop offers 100 percent protection against water damage. The manufacturer guarantees this for a lifetime.
7. Bauknecht BBC 3C26 X built-in dishwasher for 14 place settings
The Bauknecht BBC 3C26 X built-in dishwasher of energy efficiency class A ++ cleans up to 14 place settings in one pass and consumes approximately 265 kilowatt hours per year. The average annual water consumption is 2,520 liters. The manufacturer puts the capacity at 14 kilograms. The model has seven standard programs and a sensor program in which internal sensors determine the degree of pollution of the water in order to intelligently control the water and energy consumption according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
There are four movable cup racks and four plate segments in the upper basket. The shelves can be folded in so that soup pots and large pans do not become a problem. With the option for rinsing tabs, you can improve the respective rinsing performance for a detergent and should benefit from the rinsing result. Thanks to the Hygiene + option, the device rinses at high temperatures and eliminates fungi and bacteria without using chemical cleaners.
Bauknecht installs a night program in this model that works whisper-quiet. There is also an electronic child lock for the necessary security in everyday family life. The height of the switch panel can be adjusted from 115 to 145 millimeters. You can adjust the device height between 820 and 1,900 millimeters to your needs.
8. Table dishwasher TSG 708 from Bomann for single kitchens
The table dishwasher Bomann TSG 708 holds six place settings and is intended for small households. According to the provider, the device should still be powerful. The cleaning temperatures are between 40 and 70 degrees. A crockery basket and foldable glasses and plate holders are included. There are five cleaning programs to choose from. The programs are
- 90 minutes
A rinse aid warning light is available for this device . This signals you that the rinse aid container must be refilled. Furthermore, a control lamp informs you about the activated water supply. In addition, the dishwasher has a flexible start delay with four programs.
You connect this compact dishwasher via the usual 220 to 240 volts. The connected load is 1,280 watts. The manufacturer puts the annual water consumption at an average of 1,820 liters. The power consumption is 174 kilowatt hours.
9. Dishwasher SN436S01CE iQ300 from Siemens as a built-in dishwasher, floor washer or fully integrated dishwasher
The Siemens dishwasher is available as a built- under dishwasher , floor washer, fully and partially integrated dishwasher. It is equipped with the energy efficiency class A +++. The average water consumption per year is 2,660 liters, the energy consumption is 234 kilowatt hours per year.
14 place settings fit in the Siemens dishwasher. Even with a full load, the machine cleans and dries in just one hour. According to Siemens, it is ideally suited for daily loading and soiling of all dishes. The height of the upper basket is adjustable so that there is room in the lower basket for larger pots. The following programs are available:
- Glass program
- 1 hour program
- Intensive 70-degree program
- Eco 50 degree program
- Silence 50 degree program and that
- Auto program
10. Siemens SN236W01KE iQ300 dishwasher with varioSpeed Plus for quick cleaning and drying
The Siemens SN236W01KE iQ300 is a white standing dishwasher with a width of 84 centimeters, as well as a height and depth of 60 centimeters each. The device can be found in energy efficiency class A ++ and, according to Siemens, rinses very efficiently. This dishwasher has the aquaStop function for a lifelong guarantee against water damage.
The manufacturer estimates energy consumption of 262 kilowatt hours per year on the basis of 280 standard cleaning cycles with cold water filling and the consumption of operating modes with low power consumption. The water consumption is 2,660 liters per year. This is based on 280 standard cleaning cycles. The actual water consumption depends on the type of use.
What do I need a dishwasher for?
In numerous kitchens, the sink and dishwasher share a drain and clean plates, cups, glasses, pans, bowls and pots. Instead of washing dishes by hand, it is more convenient to place the dishes in the baskets of the dishwasher and activate the next cycle at the push of a button.
The devices not only avoid washing hands. They are able to amortize their purchase price. The amount of water required for the next washing process is calculated by sensors. The devices are also energy-saving.
There are free-standing, semi-integrated and fully integrated dishwashers, under-counter appliances and table-top dishwashers. All types work on the same principle: you put your dirty dishes and cutlery in the dishwasher to take them out clean and dry after the washing process.
- Economical in water and energy consumption
- Great time savings: efficient cleaning performance
- Wide range of programs
- Thorough cleaning of dishes, cutlery, glasses and pots
- Clear LC display
- From energy efficiency class A ++, relatively high purchase price
- Eco programs with a runtime of up to 4 hours
- Large dishwashers take up a lot of space in the kitchen unit
FAQ: The most important questions about the dishwasher
When was the first dishwasher?
The dishwasher was invented in 1886 by Josephine Cochrane. The American filed a patent for a dishwasher that used water pressure to clean cutlery and dishes. The first dishwasher in Chicago officially saw the light of day at the 1893 World's Fair.
What temperature does a dishwasher reach?
In the standard washing programs and in the main washing program, the temperatures of most dishwashers are between 65 and 70 degrees Celsius. Some dishwashing detergents need a certain temperature before they can achieve their full cleaning effect. You should take a look at the detergent package leaflet to select the right program and to completely wash away grease and dirt.
What does a load in the dishwasher cost me?
The modern devices work in very high energy efficiency classes and consume little energy and water per cycle. There are consumers who still wash by hand for cost reasons. A full load in the dishwasher costs an average of around half a euro. This includes detergent, water and energy. The time saved should not be underestimated. Even if you have to put the dishes in and out, you need more time to wash them by hand.
What types of dishwashers are there?
Free-standing dishwasher : Free-standing dishwashers are referred to as free-standing dishwashers. You can place this type of dishwasher anywhere, regardless of your own kitchen. Only electricity and water connections should be close to the installation site. In contrast to the other models, you can use the shelf on the free-standing dishwasher. One of the most important features of free-standing devices is their decorability. In this case, the device cover can be removed and adapted to the dimensions and the material as well as the panels in the kitchen.
Undermount dishwasher : Undermount dishwashers are delivered without a cover plate. That means the dishwasher is integrated into the kitchen unit, but no furniture door can be attached to the front cover. If the front is not integrated in the kitchen unit, it falls out of line in design. As a rule, the dishwashers are available in a stainless steel look or in white. The control panel is visible on this dishwasher.
Fully integrated built-in device : You do not set up a built-in device anywhere in the room, but integrate it into the kitchen unit. The front area of the dishwasher is provided with a door so that the dishwasher is fully adapted to the kitchen look. The control panel is located on the top of the device and is only visible after opening the door. Accordingly, the fully integrated dishwasher does not need a separate child lock.
Semi-integrated built-in appliance: With semi-integrated dishwashers, the control element is visible and freely accessible. Nevertheless, the dishwasher fits into the kitchen picture and is not particularly noticeable. Some semi-integrated dishwashers are decorable.
Decorative built-in device : You have the option of installing a decorative panel with a thickness of 3 to 4 millimeters at the front. The devices adapt to the design of your kitchen. This is not necessary with other dishwashers because they have an elegant stainless steel look. If you change from an old to a new dishwasher, the decorability must be taken into account if you want to put the existing decorative panel on the new appliance. Table dishwasher: The table dishwasher is compact in size. It takes up little space and can be placed in the kitchen to save space. Table dishwashers are suitable for single households.
What is a place setting?
A place setting is a set number of cutlery and dishes. EN 50242 is a standardized size that has been measured and laid down in advance. This allows the capacity of the dishwasher to be compared.
What sizes are there in dishwashers?
The standard of dishwashers comes to 60 centimeters in width and thus fits in most kitchens. If the device width drops to 45 centimeters, we are talking about a mini dishwasher for single households. The capacity increases depending on the number of users, so that large families also have the opportunity to find the right size.
Do dishwashers have standard dimensions? Yes. There is a declared standard, the width and depth of which are each 60 centimeters. The standard height is 81 centimeters. This applies to conventional dishwashers. The standard dimensions of the single devices are reduced to a width and height of 45 centimeters.
Which dishwasher height to choose?
In contrast to the width, there are two heights to choose from in dishwashers. After all, most consumers are bound to the standardized height of the worktop and cannot freely choose the height of the device. 86 centimeters and 81 centimeters are available in stores. Before you buy, you should measure so that there are no unexpected difficulties during installation.
Which connections do I need for a dishwasher?
Before opening the valve, you should place a bucket under it. Some water can run out. Use a pipe wrench and then screw the valve tight. The fresh tap water enters the inside of the dishwasher via the supply hose. The dirty rinsing water runs through the drain hose directly into the sink drain. There is a corresponding drain here. If this connection is missing, an adapter between siphon and drain can be integrated.
How much water does a dishwasher use?
A rinse cycle requires about 5 to 7 liters of water. When washing by hand, it is between 13 and 15 liters. If pans or pots are smeared with grease, the water consumption in hand washing increases. The amount of washing-up liquid increases by hand when washing. With the dishwasher, it does not matter how many grease-smeared pots are in one wash cycle. Longer dishwashing times do not automatically increase your water consumption. Statistics show that you need around 5,500 liters of water per year to wash your hands, which is a lot more than the dishwasher.
What is the AquaStop function?
AquaStop protects them from disastrous water damage. The dishwasher detects every smallest leak through the use of specific inlet hoses and valves. For this, the manufacturers rely on a solenoid valve that immediately blocks the inlet via the control.
Buying guide dishwasher: What should be considered?
The size of the dishwasher is one of the most important factors when buying a new device. The dishwashers with a width of 45 centimeters are suitable for smaller families, while the dishwashers with a width of 60 centimeters are ideal for a family of four. Last but not least, the occupancy rate plays an important role. In this context, you should determine the respective flush volumes and base your purchase on the capacities of the devices.
The energy efficiency class: what does the dishwasher use?
The energy efficiency class makes it easy for consumers to compare the respective consumption quantities. According to the requirements of the European Union, manufacturers are obliged to label the devices with the EU energy label. This symbol has been clearly visible on several household appliances since 1998. If you buy a dishwasher, you can use the EU energy consumption label to assess consumption accordingly.
An important factor for the energy class for the manufacturers is the dishwasher’s Eco program. The savings programs score with a shorter duration and a correspondingly lower energy and water consumption than with the intensive program. The dishwasher’s product data sheet provides exact values, which you can access via the detailed product description in the online shop. Here you will find the electricity consumption, water consumption, the maximum load and the drying efficiency class.
The cutlery basket belongs to the standard of a dishwasher and can be found in the lower area of the dishwasher. Other devices use a cutlery drawer. The adjustable upper baskets are particularly practical. You can put soup pots and pans in the dishwasher.
Dishwashers are often equipped with so-called “rows of spikes” into which you can insert smaller plates or saucers. If you fold down the rows of spikes, you will receive a flat shelf if necessary. Place the plates parallel to each other in the respective rows of plates, so that you can thoroughly clean them during the next cycle. The individual plates should not touch or lie directly on top of each other. Make sure that the cleaner and hot water get on each piece of cutlery.
If the dishwashers run every day, you should not disturb everyday life and not be noticed. If you buy a dishwasher with a sound level below 50 decibels, you should not be disturbed by the noise of the appliance. An alternative is to activate the dishwasher at night.
Cleaning: Dishwasher does not wash clean
Most of the problems can be eliminated with the correct loading. In most cases you will find a plastic propeller in the lower basket. This must be able to move freely. Otherwise the water cannot spread throughout the lower basket. Place plates or pots that are too high in this area, obstruct the rotary movements so that the machine cannot wash properly.
In most cases, a dirty dishwasher is responsible for the deterioration in performance. You should clean the entire interior regularly. A lack of salt can also be the reason why your dishes are not properly cleaned. A lamp on the machine usually indicates whether this is the case.
How do I clean my dishwasher?
The following cleaning cycle should make even heavily soiled dishware shine again:
- Sprinkle baking soda on the floor of the empty dishwasher.
- Pour vinegar essence into the powder compartment.
- Let the standard program run at a high temperature without pre-rinsing.
What is the dishwasher salt responsible for?
Dishwasher salt is the sodium chloride of table salt or sea salt. In contrast, the suppliers do not use carbonate and iron for dishwasher salt. This would increase the hardness of the water and damage the dishes. By using dishwasher salt you activate the ion exchange. You can improve the cleaning results by using dishwasher salt and counteract lime. The amount of dishwasher salt depends on the dishwasher. You can put new salt back into the dishwasher as soon as you see lime stains on the dishes.
How can I descale my dishwasher?
Depending on the water hardness, it is necessary to descale regularly. Soda helps here. Sprinkle two tablespoons of the white powder on the floor and run the machine empty on a short wash cycle. With the dishwasher it does not matter how many grease-smeared pots are in the wash cycle.
Is there a dishwasher test at Stiftung Warentest?
The Stiftung Warentest 86 dishwasher in the test under the microscope taken. Built-in appliances and free-standing appliances, narrow and wide dishwashers. The endurance test of the Stiftung Warentest has the advantage that you keep an overview of the available dishwashers over the years. The experts from the consumer organization point out that the economical A +++ devices are a very good choice. In the purchase price, they are often hardly above the A ++ dishwashers. The savings have been felt for years