We put dishwashers through a series of rigorous tests to see which machines are the best.
Our overall score combines test performance (how well the appliance works) with predicted reliability (how likely models from the brand are to remain free of faults) and owner satisfaction (how likely owners of the brand are to be very satisfied).
We’ll only recommend appliances you’ll love to own, that work well and keep working well for a long time.
We assess how well the dishwashers can remove food such as oats, spinach, egg yolk, baby cereal, butter, tomato juice and tea stains that have been dried overnight, and without being rinsed first. Our test is based partly on established international standards.
This score reflects how dry the dishes are 30 minutes after the normal cycle has finished. During this time the doors are left closed, unless the dishwasher has an automatic door opening function that is activated at the end of the program.
This is based on the amount of energy used per place setting by the dishwasher on the tested program. The less energy used, the higher (better) the score.
How we test dishwashers
The items used for a test load need to be the same every time, and have the same amounts of the same types of food on them. Also, there needs to be consistency in how many items are loaded into dishwashers of varying sizes.
Our testers check how well the dishwashers tackle a full load of dirty dishes by measuring out and placing equal amounts of steam-baked oats, egg yolk, spinach, baby cereal, butter, tomato juice and tea on our standardised set of crockery. They also put egg yolk onto cutlery.
Each of the foods plays a crucial part in assessing how the dishwasher performs and they’re there to test things like filtration, spray-arm effectiveness, rinsing and automatic sensors.
We let them dry for 15 to 18 hours before putting them in the dishwasher.
If a machine has an ‘auto’ cycle, we select it over the ‘normal’ cycle. We do this because an auto or sensing cycle should be designed to give optimum results for every wash. And generally, you’re paying extra for this feature. If there’s no auto cycle, we test on the normal cycle as this is what our members use the most.
We put each dishwasher through its paces at least twice and the scores are averaged.
Survey data 101
In our annual reliability and satisfaction survey, consumers tell us about faults that have left an appliance they own unusable or mean they’ve had to change how they use it. We also ask them how satisfied they are with the appliance. We use their data to produce our predicted reliability and owner satisfaction scores.
We use a statistical test to rate the relative performance of each brand. Compared with data we have for all products (of the same type) in the survey, we rate each brand with excellent, good, average, poor or terrible reliability and satisfaction.
You can compare the rating of different brands for the same product type (for example, the reliability rating for Miele and Haier washing machines), but you can’t compare the results for different product types (for example, satisfaction of LG TVs and Samsung phones).
We analyse brands that get at least 30 responses in our survey. That means there are some brands we can’t analyse because we don’t have enough data. For those brands, we assume they have average predicted reliability and owner satisfaction.
Our data is based on responses for 2344 dishwashers in our 2022 survey.