Reasons to choose a countertop dishwasher
This is not simply a gimmick—it’s the perfect solution in certain circumstances. Just imagine one of the quality models mentioned above, in these situations:
- You have limited kitchen space in your small apartment, but you enjoy having people over. This helps you clean up quick.
- Keeping a dorm room or communal living space clean is a challenge, especially if some role players don’t prioritize cleaning up. This unit will take up very little of the limited space available and makes it easy for everyone to join in on maintaining order.
- Make it easy for employees or your colleagues to keep an office area clean. It will keep odors at bay and visitors will see you prioritize professionalism & cleanliness.
- RVs may not be set up for regular dishwashers, but these reviewed units can connect with almost any faucet. Make your travels effortless when a countertop dishwasher helps you clean up after a yummy meal next to the road.
- Save on space and electricity when planning your home set up for a small family. These units require little space and won’t let your utility costs skyrocket.
Seems like a brilliant idea, right? Then let’s help you pick yours.
Features to consider when choosing a countertop dishwasher
Now let’s focus on what makes a countertop dishwasher exceptional. With appliances you always need to ensure you match an item’s features to your unique requirements—you don’t want to pay for features you won’t really use. However, our experts find this list of features relevant to most situations—Take some notes so you can make an informed decision when you start shopping.
Wash cycle selection
You won’t be washing the same things each day, and you want to look after the crockery and items you wash in your countertop dishwasher. High-end models will give you different time, power and temperature settings so you can customize it to your needs. If you know your plates simply need a quick rinse, pick a quick wash setting, and you’ll save water and power, as well as time.
Important note: modern units may actually take longer than the machines you used a few years ago. This is because they use less energy. Therefore, be prepared for cycles that usually take longer than an hour. The Black & Decker’s 100-minute cycle may seem long, but it’s actually quite impressive. And the Whynter’s 45-minute option is handy, but know your dishes won’t be as thoroughly clean or dry as on longer cycles.
How many place settings can your preferred countertop dishwasher handle? Dishwashers often take either four or six place settings. Align this capacity with how many family members you have, but opt for a bit larger if you know you often have people over to your house.
For office or dorm setups, the bigger the better, but make sure the physical dimensions are practical in terms of available space (see below).
As mentioned above, it’s basically your FIRST priority to measure out the space you have available in your kitchen. Make sure there’s enough clearance in front of the unit, as they most often open at the front. Also, make sure it neatly fits onto your counter as it can make it unstable if it overlaps too much.
Tip: It’s ideal if you can find an available space close to your taps, so hooking up your new appliance will be easier with fewer cords and pipes crisscrossing your kitchen. If this is a priority for you, a smaller unit that fits into a small nook may be better value for money than a larger one you’ll have to sacrifice your workspace for.
This may not be at the top of everyone’s priority list, but sound does matter. Especially if you’re placing yours in an office environment you don’t want the dishwasher to disrupt employees’ concentration. Even at home, a low noise unit is best—just imagine loud noise in a small apartment—if you want to enjoy watching TV while your dishes get washed.
Of course no unit will every be completely silent. The best you can hope for is only hearing the water moving inside your dishwasher, and not much of the motor turning inside. The Ivation model is an excellent example.
There are many reasons to invest in delay features on your countertop dishwasher, such as the one found on the Whynter CDW-6831WES. It’s best to let your cycle end when you know you’ll be home so you can open it up and let the dishes cool down & dry out.
Another reason why this was so attractive to our test group is because they could delay the start of wash cycles to when they knew energy and water consumption was at a low level in their households. If you also pay less for energy during certain time frames, you can further save on utility costs by only using your washer during those hours.
Energy Star Certification
Perhaps you’ve seen the logo, but you’re not sure what it means? The well-known Energy Star certification tells you the product is designed to save energy (and therefore money on utility costs). In most cases, there will be savings of up to 30%. One example is an appliance that has a higher capacity per energy unit it uses.
If your new portable countertop dishwasher has this feature, it will save you on household costs, but also limit your footprint in terms of greenhouse gasses.
That makes these appliances viable for modern Smart Homes and environmentally conscious families.
This aspect matters for two reasons: will your counter be able to handle the weight of your new dishwasher? You don’t want it to start sagging, breaking or pulling apart over time.
Also, will you be able to manage to install it by yourself? A light unit is more user-friendly during setup.
Of course, a larger unit will usually weigh more, so you need to decide what your top priority is before you start shopping.
A handy alternative is placing your dishwasher on a rolling cart next to your counter so you can easily move it if necessary.
The longer the warranty, the better—it’s proof of an item’s durability. Just know that how you use your unit will affect how long it serves you. If you don’t rinse off dishes and when you often overload it, components are bound to get clogged, damaged or worn. Your warranty may not cover this, so use yours with care from the start.
As you can see in most units above a 1-year warranty is standard. If you look after your countertop dishwasher and you invest in a high-end unit you’ll enjoy its benefits for much longer even.
Take note that warranties often apply to certain aspects of your purchase only. One example is the Edgestar’s 90-day warranty on labor. After that period you won’t be covered so if you do use your warranty and have something repaired, check it thoroughly once you get it back.