Yum … Juicy Stakes, whoops sorry, meant “Juicy Steaks”.

Everybody loves a good steak dinner with mashed potatoes, gravy, sweeting corn on the cob dripping in butter, green beans, and sweet apple pie for dessert.  Yum.  My mouth is watering right now.

But your dishwasher just went caput, so unless you win a big jackpot on the Juicy Stakes online casino website, the sky is not the limit in terms of buying a new dishwasher, so the grease covered dishes that come with a juicy steak dinner are going to have to wait.

How much do dishwashers cost?

I looked up these figures from the Home Depot website for dishwashers.   I am looking up built in full dishwashers.

With no filters, $2149 – $378 or $400 – $2100.  With no filters, there were 171 dishwashers to choose from.

With a white exterior — 61 dishwashers to choose from — $1450 to $378.  The difference between the high and low is now $1100.

With a black exterior — 52 dishwashers to choose from — $1450 to $378.  Same difference as the white one.

So choose stainless steel on the outside does not affect the actual dishwasher on the inside, but does affect the price.  White or black exterior does not affect the price.  So I will just look at white exterior dishwashers.  You can also choose red, black, blue, or copper color and it will not affect the price or quality (on the high end of the white/black range).  But on the low end of the white/black range, you can get white, black, or stainless steel or even biscuit (beige).

What features do dishwashers have?

There are 44 white dishwashers, 24″ wide:

  1. Automatic temperature control (36) – Auto Temperature Control is part of our wash system. It senses the dirt level and adjusts the water temperature (within the range of that cycle/option chosen) to provide the best wash results.
  2. Hard food filter (33) – system that collects food particles in a basin at the bottom of the dishwasher
  3. Cycle Status Light (25)
  4. Tall Tub (27)
  5. Hard Food Disposer (22) – Uses a chopper to disintegrate food particles so they don’t end up recirculating onto your dishes. It rids the dishwasher of the particles so you don’t have to spend time cleaning it out.
  6. Leak Sensor (18)
  7. Filtered water (17)
  8. Sound Reduction System (15)
  9. 3rd Rack (15)
  10. Hidden Controls (12)
  11. Panel Ready (7)
  12. Built In Hose (6)
  13. Moveable Tines (6)
  14. Self cleaning filter (4)
  15. Fingerprint resistant (4) – $791 – 1149
  16. Bottle Washing Sprayers (3) – GE brand, $598 – $854
  17. Automatic Door Release (1) – $1169 (Samsung)
  18. Steam (1) – $1169 (Samsung)
  19. Stainless Steel Tub (25) – $648 to $1450
  20. Plastic Tub (23) – $378 to $700
  21. Hybrid (2)

Stainless steel tub vs plastic tub

Stainless steel tub dishwahers are more expensive than plastic tub dishwashers, but is the price difference worth it?

  • Stainless steel pro – less energy required (lower cost to run the dishwasher)
  • Stainless steel pro – less maintenance, since stainless steel is not porous.
  • Stainless steel pro – cleaner dishes, because the dishwasher can run at a higher temperature.
  • Stainless steel pro – Quieter

Plastic tub dishwashers:

  • Lower price point
  • Plastic is a heavy duty plastic.

So disregarding all of the other features of a dishwasher, you are talking half the price for a plastic tub vs. a stainless steel tub dishwasher.

Personally, I have always gone with a stainless steel interior dishwasher.  But if price is the top priority, go with the plastic tub one for the most bang for your buck.

Front controls vs top controls

Top controls add to the price and provide no improvement in the functionality of the dishwasher.

Hard food disposer and hard food filter

White, front controls, plastic tub …

In both the stainless steel market and the plastic tub market, around half of the dishwashers use filters and half use food disposers.

For the hard food filter, low end is $398 and the high end is $699.

For the hard food disposer, $378 to $539

GE Dishwashers come with both hard food filter and hard food disposer.  $448 – $539

For these two features, the prices are around the same, so it is whichever one is your preference.

Tall Tub

A tall tub dishwasher simply means that there is more interior space than standard tubs, but the exterior size remains the same.

Since I have a large family, I pefer this model.

The price range is $378 – $539.

Of the 7 that are in this category,  …

  • Hard food disposer (7)
  • Automatic temperater control (6)
  • Leak sensor (4)
  • Hard food filter (3)

The GE Brand comes with a leak sensor, while the Hot Point does not.

The GE Brand comes with a temperate control.  Only 1 Hot Point comes with Temperature control at a price of $398

Sound

If sound is not an issue to you, then your price range is $378 – $494. (5 dishwashers to choose from).

Type of controls on the front

This is an area that is a personal preference.  I like the traditional mechanical knob on my appliances … less things to break.  With a digital panel, if the buttons break, you have to replace the whole panel.  But with mechanical controls, it is much cheaper to fix or replace.

From the Home Depot selection, the only dishwashers that had mechanical controls were the ones that had the Hybrid Stainless Steel.

This narrowed down the selection to two dishwashers:

Last two standing … Bosch

Both of these dishwashers have the following features:

  • Automatic Temperature controls
  • Cycle Status Lights
  • Hard Food Filter
  • Leak Sensor
  • Sound reduction system
  • Tall Tub

The only difference between the two is that one has filtered water and the other does not.  That only makes a difference if you have issues with hard water, which is a problem in my community.

And the final price is $549.

Runner up …

If I was not fixated on the mechanical controls on the front on the dishwasher, I would choose one that had Hard Food Disposer.  That is assuming that you do not have major issues with your pipes, and small food particles going into your pipes are not an issue.

There were 11 dishwashers that are white, have front controls, Hard Food Disposer, and a plastic tub.  All are tall tubs.  Of the rest, they are all around the same price range with slight differences in features.  $378 – $799 (one stainless steel tub).

Summary

This article was intended to give you an idea of how to begin your search for your dishwasher.  What causes different features to increase the price, and are those features worth it.  Unfortunately, there is no perfect dishwasher.  It depends on what you are looking for …

Personally, I would not pay extra for “top controls” or a front stainless steel finish.  Not worth the money.  But …

  • Stainless steel interior
  • Hard food disposer (top choice)
  • Hard food dispenser (acceptable)
  • Tall Tub (does not affect the price, so get it)
  • Filtered water (only because I live in an area with hard water issues)

Now, what is only left is to “kick the tires” so to speak.  Go down to the store and actually take a look at the dishwasher.  Press the buttons.  Feel the thickness of the dish racks.  Are they going to stand up to 10 to 20 years of wear and tear?  If you choose the filter model, is the person who is actually going to have to deal with that be able to get to the filter to clean it?  Think grandma taking out the bottom rack of the dishwasher and then kneeling down to get to the filter to clean it.

But whichever one you choose, I wish you many many years of clean dish happiness …

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