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Types of Dishwashers: Counter Top, Built-in, and Many More

Growing up, we all had our fair share of household chore experiences. Remember those moments when you and your siblings used to fight over who gets to do what. Then when the bickering ends, it is always the youngest of the bunch who gets bullied into doing the worst chore. And funny enough, it still happens to be doing the dishes. A lot of people hate washing the dishes so much that relational discord often comes out of it. Thankfully, the home appliance Gods have answered our prayers with the birth of the dishwashing machine.

The first-ever dishwashers were already invented as early as the 1800's and featured a more primitive wooden design. While the machine-driven ones only came to the market during the late 1900's. Fast forward to today, we now enjoy several types of dishwashing appliances making our kitchen life a lot easier. However, choosing the right kind for your daily needs has become quite a challenge nowadays due to the array of dishwashers to choose from in the market. So we have compiled the most common types of dishwashing appliances and their different features to help your decision-making a lot easier.

1. Countertop Dishwasher

Countertop Dishwasher Often referred to as benchtop or compact dishwashers, the countertop types are one of the older electronic models that were initially released in the market. They are also the smallest among the other dishwashing models, which make them the perfect option if you have very limited space in the kitchen. Like standard microwaves ovens, these dishwashers can easily fit on top of your fridge, on tabletops and countertops, and even on racks.

Sadly, due to their small size, only a limited number of dishes can fit in it. This is why most people who buy countertop dishwashers are either living alone in an apartment or those who don't usually cook at home all the time. However, they are relatively cheap and newer models nowadays have additional features that the older version are missing out on. Furthermore, they come in various sizes that can be either wider or taller, depending on your needs.

2. Sliding or Drawer Dishwasher

Sliding or Drawer Dishwasher Drawer dishwashers were initially created for space-saving reasons. However, the newer models these days have been geared to energy and water conservation more than just saving more room in your kitchen. This is due to its features which require a relatively smaller amount of water and energy per load than standard dishwashers.

You can easily slide the dishwasher in and out and are often mistaken as a regular kitchen drawer thanks to its design. Furthermore, they either come as single or double sliders, depending on your dish load and space. Plus they can change the cycle strength and duration depending on the type of dishes you are cleaning. For example, typical ceramic plates need stronger and longer load cycles. Meanwhile, delicate glasses need a softer touch and only requires a shorter cycle time.

Although there are varying drawer heights already available nowadays, most of the drawer dishwashers come in a more compact size where larger serving plates don't fit into. What's more, since it is relatively new in the market and it is only produced by Fisher & Paykel; this kind of dishwasher is quite expensive. But other than that, more and more households and appliance experts do consider drawer dishwashers as the ideal type among the rest.

3. Built-in Dishwasher

Built-in DishwasherIf you want a customizable dishwashing appliance, then this is the type for you. People who love to dabble on the interior design of their homes often opt for built-in dishwashers. This is because their size and color are matched based on the theme of their kitchens as well as their space allocation. However, this also means that they come with a hefty price tag as compared to portable or standard types.

Nevertheless, built-in dishwashers are aesthetically pleasing to the eye since its wiring and plumbing system and controls are hidden and placed out of sight. What's more, they are found to be quieter as compared to other dishwashers which often make a loud humming sound when in use. Sadly, besides it being pricey, built-in dishwashing appliances are complicated to repair since its wires and tubes are generally placed within the walls.

4. Portable Dishwasher

Portable DishwasherJust as the name suggests, this dishwashing appliance is the only one with wheels. If your job requires you to move from one place to another every few months or so, then this dishwasher is your new best friend. Created to make your travelling more convenient, portable dishwashers come in 18-inch and 24-inch sizes with the latter being the more preferred choice. You can easily roll them from one spot to another, depending on your kitchen space. And they can also serve as your shelf rack where you can store your dishes if not in use.

Due to their convenient design and feature, most RVs and vacation homes use this appliance rather than going for the standard kinds. Amazingly, some of the newer models these days can also be converted into a built-in dishwasher or a countertop type. The only downside of this dishwashing appliance is its limited capacity and the fact that it eats up too much floor space.

5. Slimline Dishwasher

Slimline DishwasherSpace has always been an issue when it comes to appliances, especially the ones used in the kitchen. Thankfully, brands have created more space-friendly models without compromising efficiency. And the perfect example of which is the slimline dishwasher. As the name suggests, these types of dishwashers are a few centimetres thinner than standard models, mostly being 45 centimetre wide.

With the more limited capacity space though, slimline dishwashers usually are the best option for smaller households or people living alone. And you can typically find them on trailer homes, small apartments, flats, cabins, and even on boats. Furthermore, large pots and pans will not fit inside this appliance, so you better use smaller ones instead. Despite this drawback, many people still opt for the slimline type as they come either as a freestanding or built-in model.


Integrated models are those which are fixed in position such as built-in and drawer types. While, freestanding dishwashers are those which can be easily moved from area to another, and this includes the portable and countertop types. And choosing between an integrated and a freestanding dishwasher will depend on several factors.

Kitchen space is always one of the first issues that you need to consider when choosing a dishwashing appliance. Limited areas call for space-saving models while you have more freedom with a more spacious kitchen. This is then followed by capacity and price, which will solely depend on the number of people in your household as well as your budget. And finally, there is the question of permanency. Are you staying long term, renting, or will be travelling now and then.

Thanks to the various designs and features that each model provides, customers can easily choose which among these types is the best for their current setup. Although some would consider dishwashers as an unnecessary kitchen appliance, we still consider it a good investment. And this is especially true if you have a fast-paced day-to-day lifestyle with little time for chores or even for establishments such as restaurants.

Note: We also provide affordable appliance repair services in the area of Doylestown, PA and washer repair

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