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Dishwashers

What's behind our dishwasher Ratings?

Experts at our National Testing and Research Center tested 182 models in dishwashers to see which ones perform best.
We look for:
  • Overall score
    Based mainly on washing, it also factors in noise, energy and water use, loading, and more. The displayed score is out of a total of 100 points.
  • Washing
    Assessed by running the normal or equivalent cycle to clean a full load--10 place settings of very dirty dishes that were scraped but not rinsed. We examine the dishes and glassware for residual food after cleaning.
  • Energy use
    For a normal cycle. The largest portion is needed for heating water, both at the water heater and in the machine.
  • Noise
    Judged during fill, wash, and drain, mainly by a listening panel.
  • Ease of use
    Considers convenience of controls, the ability to hold extra place settings and oversized items such as platters up to 13-1/2 in. long and Pilsner-type glasses up to 10 in. high.
  • Cycle time
    Based on a normal cycle including heated dry, where that feature is available.

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Recommended dishwashers

Recommended dishwashers are standout choices with high scores. They include CR Best Buys, which offer exceptional value. When narrowing your choices, weigh features, price, and attributes that matter to you.
  • Buying Guide
  • Price & Shop
Did you know that a new energy-efficient dishwasher can save you hundreds of dollars over its life? (On average, dishwashers last about 10 years.) But as important as it might be to save energy with your new dishwasher, you'll also want to buy a machine that fits your budget and your family's lifestyle. If you're looking for information about dishwashers, Consumer Reports is your best resource. Consumer Reports’ dishwasher reviews will give you honest buying advice that you can trust. Use our dishwasher buying guide to discover which features are most important to consider. We also provide unbiased Ratings and dishwasher reviews to help you choose the best dishwasher for your needs.

Recently reviewed dishwashers

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Monogram ZDT870SPFSS
This GE conventional dishwasher has
  • A soil sensor.
  • An adjustable upper rack.
  • A delayed-start feature.
  • A stainless-steel interior.
  • All hidden controls.
  • Adjustable tines.
  • Ample flatware slots.
  • Time-remaining display.

Dishwasher buying guide

Tougher new rules have slashed the energy and water dishwashers can use to get the government's Energy Star seal. But our latest tests show that you don't have to live with dirty dishes or endure even longer cycles. Better yet, some of the biggest energy misers are also easy on your wallet. Dishwashers built since January 2012 must use about 9 percent less electricity and 27 percent less water to meet the federal EPA's voluntary Energy Star standard. Our top picks qualify for that coveted seal.

Energy Star standards for dishwashers could add a wash-performance component as soon as the spring of 2015. The Department of Energy, which sets the underlying standards, bases them on lightly soiled loads. Consumer Reports has urged them to use much dirtier loads, as we do in our tests.

We slather plates with egg yolks, peanut butter, raspberry jam, and other stubborn goo to see which dishwashers made our clean-plate club. Our results show that it's easy to pay a tidy sum for so-so performance. You can also pay less and get more noise than you expected. Here's what else to consider:

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