The best dishwashers

Put away that sponge and let us help you pick the best dishwasher for your buck

Best Dishwashers

Let’s face it: Washing dishes by hand is the absolute worst. First off, the mildewed puck which passes as your kitchen sponge always seems a few days away from sprouting legs; it’s not exactly something you want to scrub any dinner plates with. If that’s not enough, the running water you use typically fluctuates between boiling lava hot and just lukewarm enough to foster the convenient spread of bacteria. Perhaps even more annoying than these very manageable set of variables is the sheer act of having to expend elbow grease (and precious Netflix time) to clean plates manually.

A dishwasher will help keep your kitchen sink spick-and-span. But like most things on the open market, sifting through the sea of available dishwasher options is frustrating and exhausting. To help you get a better grasp on the latest and greatest dishwashing options, and narrow down your choices, we’ve taken to the task of finding the finest dishwashers worthy of any kitchen. So say goodbye to scalding water and that petri dish of a sponge; here are the four best dishwashers available.

At a glance

Product Category
GE GDT655SMJES Best overall
Bosch 500 Series SHP65T55UC Best environmentally friendly dishwasher
LG QuadWash LDP6797ST Best performing dishwasher
Samsung Chef Collection DW80M9 Most Versatile dishwasher

GE GDT655SMJES

The best

Why you should buy this: With so many features and a great price, this dishwasher has it all.

Who’s it for: Anyone looking for a good clean with a few special features

How much will it cost: $699 MSRP

Why we picked the GE GDT655SMJES:

One of the best features on the GE GDT655SMJES dishwasher is the bottle jets in the top rack. Instead of the usual tines, there are two jets made for bottles and other tall items; water sloshes around to help get out whatever’s inside. But there are other great features on this dishwasher that put it at the top of our list: It has separate wash zones, so can clean just the top or bottom rack when you don’t have a full load. There’s also a 32-minute express cycle, a steam prewash option, and an NSF-certified, germ-killing sanitization setting.

Its stainless steel interior holds 16 place settings, and the dishwasher runs at an impressive 46 decibels. It’s not the quietest dishwasher on the list, but you still might be glad that there’s an indicator light, so you’ll know it’s running.

The dishwasher is Energy Star certified and should cost around $32 a year to operate, depending on your utility rates. With a range of unique features, including several ways to boost its cleaning and drying power, this is both a powerful and affordable dishwasher, especially when you can find it on sale for around $600.

Bosch 500 Series SHP65T55UC

The best environmentally friendly dishwasher

Why you should buy this: Though it uses less water than many others, it delivers clean dishes.

Who’s it for: Anyone looking for energy and water savings

How much will it cost: $899 MSRP

Why we picked the Bosch 500 Series SHP65T55UC:

There’s a lot to love about the Bosch 500 Series and some things that take a bit of getting used to. It’s a European-style dishwasher, so it has a filter instead of a hard food disposer, like many American dishwashers. It also dries far better when you use a rinse aid to help the water evaporate. Energy Star-certified dishwashers use 4 gallons of water or less per cycle, and this Bosch has it down to 2.9 gallons. Its yearly energy use will cost you about $27, and it’s one of the quietest dishwasher on the list at 44 decibels.

Like the GE dishwasher, it has an NSF-certified sanitization cycle and can hold 16 place settings in its stainless steel tub. It also boasts a few high-end touches, like an info light that beams onto the floor and a third rack for more flexibility when it comes to utensils.

Bosch scores very well in dependability in both Consumer Reports’ and Yale Appliance’s lists.

LG QuadWash LDP6797ST

The best performing dishwasher

LG Quadwash LDP6797ST

Why you should buy this: This dishwasher gets the dirtiest dishes spotless.

Who’s it for: Anyone seeking a quiet dishwasher with superior cleaning skills.

How much will it cost: $777, although we’ve seen it for cheaper.

Why we picked the LG QuadWash LDP6797ST:

With four cleaning “arms” instead of two, this dishwasher is an impressive performer that is quiet and features adjustable racks.

When we read in the LG guide that we should put dirty dishes directly into the dishwasher without rinsing, we said, “Oh, it’s on!” We smeared plates with condiments and let them dry, then put them all in the Quadwash. To our surprise, the dishes came out sparkling clean — even when we ran them into the turbo cycle.

The dishwasher is quiet, so quiet, in fact, that we barely could tell when it was running. Tiny indicator lights just below the handle gave us an inkling, although we sometimes accidentally opened it a couple of times. This dishwasher features three racks – one small one for cooking utensils and knives on the top, a middle rack for bowls and glasses, and a bottom rack for larger items. All three racks are adjustable in case your glasses are taller, or you want to wash a large pot on the bottom rack and need more room.

Our LG QuadWash LDP679ST review

Samsung DW80M9 Chef Collection Dishwasher

The most versatile

Samsung DW80M9 Chef Collection dishwasher
Riley Young/Digital Trends

Why should you buy this: This dishwasher is attractive and features some superior cleaning technology.

Who’s it for: Those looking for a great performing dishwasher that also looks great in the kitchen.

How much will it cost: $1,399

Why we picked the Samsung DW80M9 Chef Collection Dishwasher:

While this dishwasher is a bit on the expensive side, it lands on this list for its combination of good looks and premium features.

The Chef Collection dishwasher features a dedicated third rack on the top for utensils and silverware, along with an easily-adjustable middle rack that you can lift to fit large platters on the bottom. The Zone Booster setting allows you to focus the cleaning on a concentrated area on the bottom, which is perfect for those casserole dishes with extra grime.

One neat feature we’ve never seen on a dishwasher before is that the door automatically pops open just slightly when the cycle finishes to allow the steam to escape and dry the dishes. The dishwasher runs extremely quiet at 61dB, but an indicator light that illuminates just below the outer handle tells you when the dishwasher is running.

In addition to all the technology built in, this dishwasher is a beauty, with dark, smudge-proof stainless steel that will look great in any kitchen.

Our full Samsung DW80M9 Chef Collection Dishwasher review

Some things to keep in mind

Of all major appliances, dishwashers are among the easiest to tell when they’re not doing their job. Sopping or food-encrusted dishes mean something’s not right, but it might just be your loading technique. Some dishwashers need rinse aid or they’ll leave everything wet, thanks to their condenser drying mechanisms. Modern detergent actually reacts to the enzymes in food, so if you pre-rinse your dishes, it won’t properly activate. Your owner’s manual has diagrams of how you should position your dishes so that the spray arm can reach everything and keep your dishes and your dishwasher clean.

How we test

When we test dishwashers, we use both benchmarks and less objective metrics like design. Of all the appliances we test, dishwashers get the most feedback from the Digital Trends office staff. They get used several times a day by everyone in the office, and they let us know when things aren’t getting clean, when the near-silent operation and small status light have led to them pulling the door open mid-cycle, and so on.

We also use more rigorous tests, based on AHAM’s standards, to ensure our results are repeatable and comparable.

Product Review

Invisible until you need it, SimpliSafe is a no-hassle way to watch your home

These days, there a lot of do-it-yourself home security systems out there. How do you choose? Simplisafe’s latest offering brings together beautiful hardware and the ability to customize your home security package. We do wish that we…
Smart Home

The best washing machines make laundry day a little less of a chore

It takes a special kind of person to love doing laundry, but the right machine can help make this chore a little easier. Check out our picks for the best washing machines on the market right now.
Computing

What's the best laptop? We've reviewed a lot of them, and this is our answer

The best laptop should be one that checks all the boxes: Great battery life, beautiful design, and top-notch performance. The laptops we've chosen for our best laptops you can buy do all that — and throw in some extra features while…
Emerging Tech

From flying for fun to pro filmmaking, these are the best drones you can buy

In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. Here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now, no matter what kind of flying you plan to do.
Smart Home

It cooks! It blends! Instant Pot strikes again with a blender that can cook

From the creators of the popular Instant Pot electronic pressure cooker comes the Instant Pot Ace blender, which can both cook and pulverize food. It turns soups, purees and the like into one-pitcher operations.
Smart Home

New to Instant Pot? A no-pressure guide to using the popular pressure cooker

The versatility of the Instant Pot makes it a great kitchen companion, but it also makes the multicooker a little intimidating if you're a newbie. Here are some tips on how to use the magical device.
Smart Home

5 lessons from Amazon’s head-spinning, head-splitting Alexa fiesta

Yesterday’s surprise Alexa announcement was a deluge of fast-paced devices and software announcements. Here are five takeaways from the event (hint: one is a prediction of Amazon world domination).
Smart Home

Rise and shine with the best alarm clocks to kick-start your day

People are finicky about their sleeping habits, but, fortunately, the best alarm clocks can probably match your lifestyle and budget. Here are some of our current favorites, including the Amazon Echo Spot.
Smart Home

Amazon’s partnership with SideChef makes Alexa your sous chef

Amazon and SideChef are cooking up a new interactive kitchen experience as Amazon integrates SideChef's recipes into its new Echo devices, enabling users to access recipes, photos, and video demos.
Smart Home

A study says kids and security spur people’s smart home purchases

Why are more people inviting internet-connected smart home devices into their households? According to a survey sponsored by Home Depot, the growth is primarily being driven by children and security.
Product Review

Alexa microwaved my corn and it creeped me out

When Amazon introduced its Alexa-compatible microwave, we found the concept strange. Our second thought was whether it would also be an Amazon speaker. We got our hands on the appliance at Amazon’s event. Here’s what we learned.
Smart Home

Second-gen vs. third-gen Echo Dot: What’s the difference?

Amazon's latest Dot promises better sound and a softer appearance than its predecessor for a few dollars more. If you're still debating between the second and third-generation models, here's what you need to know.
Product Review

Bigger, louder, smarter: The new Echo Show is better in every way

The pressure was on to make a bigger, better Echo Show device, and Amazon delivered. Featuring a larger screen and better sound, the new Show is a combined smart speaker, TV, and overall entertainment center in one.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Click-to-brew beer, comfy headlamps, and more

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the Web this week. You can't buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!