You can pay $700 for one of the 16 dishwashers on Consumer Reports' top-picks list or up to twice that much. With that kind of investment at stake you’ll want to make sure that the dishwasher you choose is not only quiet, energy-efficient, and excellent at washing dishes but that it will serve you well over the long haul. We asked 70,000 readers who bought a dishwasher between 2010 and 2014 about their experiences and discovered some real differences in the reliability of dishwasher brands.

Most Reliable

Bosch and Whirlpool are among the more reliable brands of the dishwashers we test. Bosch is well represented on our list of top picks and near picks. The Bosch Ascenta SHX3AR7[5]UC, $700, has been a longtime CR Best Buy. You can buy a similar model at Lowe’s for even less, the Bosch Ascenta SHE3ARF[]UC, $650. Several Bosch dishwashers just missed the recommended list including the Bosch 800 Plus Series SHX7PT55UC, $1,300, the Bosch 500 Series SHP65T55UC, $900, and the Bosch 300 Series DLX SHX53TL5UC, $850.

None of the eight Whirlpool dishwashers in our labs made our recommended list but they have their plusses starting with very good performance at affordable prices ($380 to $720). The top Whirlpool is the Whirlpool WDT720PADM, $460, which scored a respectable 75 out of 100.

Most reliable dishwashers from Consumer Reports tests.
Photo: From left, the KitchenAid KDTM354DSS, Bosch Ascenta SHX3AR7[5]UC, and Kenmore Elite 12793.

Performance vs. Reliability

Our top dishwasher is the KitchenAid KDTM354DSS, $1,080, but our readers tell us that KitchenAid is among the more repair-prone brands of dishwashers. (It tied with LG.) But washing and energy efficiency were stellar with this model and it has a self-cleaning, ultrafine filter that breaks food particles down throughout the cycle without noisy grinding.

Scoring just as well and better for noise is the Kenmore Elite 12793, $1,200. When it comes to repairs, Kenmore is in the middle of the pack with GE, Miele, Maytag and Frigidaire. In addition to top-notch performance, the Kenmore Elite features an industry first: a motorized spray arm that reverses direction if it hits something that’s fallen through the racks.

Least Reliable

Samsung is the most repair-prone brand of dishwashers among those we test with 24 percent of our readers reporting that their dishwasher had undergone repairs or experienced serious problems. The seven Samsung dishwashers in our tests scored from a low of 56 to a high of 75, range in price from $400 to $1,450, and missed our list of picks. Notable among the batch—and the most expensive—is the Samsung DW80H9970US, which is part of Samsung’s heavily marketed Chef Collection. (The matching induction range and 4-door refrigerator are both top picks.)

Dishwasher Shopping

Performance and reliability are just two of the factors that will affect your decision. You’ll also want to know how energy-efficient and quiet the machine is as well as how easy it is to operate. We score all those factors in our dishwasher Ratings plus tell you how long a cycle takes and how much water it uses.