Things to Consider
Before going ahead with the purchase, take some time to decide what you prioritize the most among all possible features in your future dishwasher. What are the key things to pay attention to?
Review of the Best Dishwashers Under $500
Part of Bosch’s 100 Series line, the Bosch SHE3AR72UC dishwasher offers you a wide range of cleaning features at an extremely affordable price.
This is a built-in dishwasher with front control and 6 wash cycles: Auto, Normal, Delicate, Heavy, Express and Half-Load. Normal and Heavy cycles are recommended for removing tougher stains, and for dealing with smaller loads and mild stains go with the Half-Load cycle. The latter will also help you minimize energy and water consumption.
Other options include Delay Start, Sanitize, Heated Dry, and High Temperature Wash. To improve your chosen drying option, finish it with the Sanitize function so you won’t have to worry about any contaminants that might have left on the dishes. By choosing these options, you effectively eliminate any remaining traces of harmful bacteria.
One of the major advantages of this model is the Precision Wash System. It allows you to load the dishes without having to rinse them beforehand. Then the wash progress is monitored by special sensors that detect any kitchenware in need of precise cleaning by wide-cover spray arms. Additionally, the functional design of spray arms is directed at reducing noise by precise aim that avoids spraying water against inner metal parts of the dishwasher itself.
Featuring patented PureDry™ technology, this Bosch Ascenta can dry your dishes without the use of fans or vents. Instead, it ends the cycles with a high temperature wash that gets rid of the excess water and moisture gathered on the dishware. You can load plastic dishes and other kitchenware wherever you want since there is no heating element that can potentially damage them.
The Bosch Ascenta operates without steam and can accommodate 14 place settings for various arrangements of kitchen sets in need of cleaning. The rack can be adjusted for load efficiency depending on a required dish placement, while the tall basket for utensils has a tight cover to ensure better hold.
The dishwasher comes with a stainless steel tub fitted with polypropylene and detergent tray optimized for better delivery of detergent agents. The design allows for the use of tabs, gel, or powder, so you don’t have to worry about the detergent type compatibility.
Even when you don’t use the dishwasher, the Ascenta is able to prevent water leaks with an improved 24/7 overflow protection system.
Noise reduction is achieved through application of multiple technologies, making the operating sound level of the dishwasher a comfortable 50 dBA which won’t interfere with your other activities in the kitchen.
The GE GDT655SMJES is a built-in 2-track dishwasher in the quieter sound range with moderate amperage.
This model features the GE Piranha™ hard food disposer with removable filter. The disposer contains stainless steel blades that rotate at 3,600 RPM to provide efficient cleaning of your kitchenware while protecting spray arms from clogging. By pulverizing large food particles, the disposer prevents possible damage that can be caused by food waste getting lodged in operational parts.
Major point of interest of this model is the nylon-fitted rack system. Upper rack is durable, smooth in operation, and is mounted with ball bearings which allow you to fully extend it. The rack is equipped with 2 shelves that can be adjusted about 2 inches up or down for sizeable dishes, glassware, and stemware. In addition, it has a bottle jet section for cleaning bottles and other tall units that can be hard to clean manually. This system operates by utilizing two jets that target water spray to reach the deepest parts of hard-to-wash items.
This GE model also lets you wash dishes your own way: lower rack can be adjusted to fit different place settings by allowing you to customize the load with multi-position and fold-down tines features.
The dividable 3-piece silverware basket is located on the right side of the lower rack. Fitted with cell covers for improved hold, the basket can be customized to the size you need for any given load configuration.
The GDT655SMJES can give you up to 65% increase in wash power. The advanced wash system comes with 6 cycles, including Auto, Pots and Pans, China and Crystal, Standard and Sensor Wash. As for the wash and dry options, you have the Delay Start and High Temperature Wash available.
Instead of a half-load option, this model offers the Wash Zone function which allows you to load only one rack and choose the wash cycle to operate either on the upper or lower level. By choosing one wash zone, you will be able to save energy while applying the full wash function to a half-load.
The stainless steel tub comes with the Floor Protect™ feature meant for fast detection of possible leaks and their prevention. Other features include steam function, resistance to fingerprints, hidden controls for smoother look, and quiet 46 dBA sound of operation.
If you are looking for the balance of cleaning efficiency, low noise and reasonable cost, this GE delivers at the levels of some top end models.
One of the top dishwashers with a great affordability to quality output ratio, the Amana ADB1400AGW is a built-in model with powerful filtration functions and certified levels of energy consumption.
This Amana can save you the loading time with the Triple Filter wash system that can get rid of any stain, so there is no need to pre-rinse and scrub the dishes.
The upper rack provides enough space to fit tall glassware, while the lower rack is perfect for large kitchenware such as pans, pots, and trays. Silverware basket is easy to handle and can be removed if you need more space in the lower rack. Additionally, the overall number of setting options is as high as 12, accommodating various loading configurations.
The dishwasher is fitted with a slate gray plastic tub, a water heater, 2 spray arms and a dispenser for extra rinse. It comes with 3 cycles and additional dry options, also featuring automatic temperature control and cycle status indication system.
The cycles include Quick Wash, Standard Wash, and Heavy option for pots and pans. The wash arms have a wide spray range for consistent cleaning regardless of the load size. For an improved cycle finish, you can choose a High Temperature Wash or a Heated Dry option which dries the load faster by using the internal heater. The dispenser rinses especially tough stains, making sure all dishes come out spotless. The sound rating of this model peaks at 63 dBA.
A cost-effective and reliable dishwasher, this Amana can give your dishes a thorough cleaning, at the same time saving your utility expenses. In addition, it’s certified as Kosher Consumer Friendly.
The Frigidaire Gallery FGID2466QF is an 8-cycle built-in dishwasher with integrated controls. Equipped with patented OrbitClean™ Spray Arm technology, it covers a wider spray area with pre-filtered water and provides superior food processing.
One of the standout features is the Sahara Dry™ fan system that ensures all moisture is gone from your dishes after the completed cycle, saving you the need to towel them.
This model is also able to automatically determine the appropriate cycle time for the dishes depending on the state of stains and amount of food waste. This is possible due to AquaSense™ Technology that, in addition to the time adjustment, also controls water pressure for different dirt levels of your kitchenware.
There are 8 available cycles that include Normal, Quick, Heavy, Upper Rack Wash, My Favorite and Rinse Only as well as 4 additional options, namely Heated Dry, High Temperature Wash, Delay Start, and Sanitize.
The Quick cycle is only 34 minutes long, saving you more time in your daily schedule. Sanitize option is NSF certified, ensuring the removal of common household bacteria at a 99% rate. You can set the delay start between 1 and 24 hours to begin the chosen cycle when you are away.
The dishwasher provides bigger storage capacity with 14 place settings for washing large amounts of dishware in a single load. It comes with a taller plastic tub and adjustable upper rack with holders for glassware, stemware and cups, clearing up to 8 inches of space. Lower rack is also able to house large items in one load, while SpaceWise™ basket can be divided into 3 pieces to save space.
Integrated electronics give the dishwasher a smoother look, and sound reduction system with the upper margin of 52 dBA keeps your space peaceful and quiet. This Frigidaire Gallery is ENERGY STAR® certified for optimized water usage and energy efficiency.
Quiet and efficient, this Whirlpool WDF520PADW is a built-in dishwasher with multiple functions and a quiet run.
With 4 cycles and 14 place settings, this model can hold large loads for various cleaning purposes. It not only includes a 1-Hour Wash cycle option but also cycle memory that saves the last used cycle and starts it automatically, saving you the time wasted on set-up.
You can also skip on pre-rinsing or scrubbing dishes when loading and still get squeaky clean results. The AccuSense™ system detects the level of dirt as well as the required pressure of water sprays which it then utilizes with powerful jets.
The dishwashing cycles include the NSF certified Sani Rinse™ option, Normal, and Heavy. For drying, there is a High Temperature Wash and Heated Dry options that deliver you dry dishes and saves you extra towelling.
The in-door AnyWare Plus silverware basket can save you the much needed space, while the upper racks can be adjusted for that same purpose with the folding tines accommodating large items like pots and pans.
This Whirlpool comes with the Quiet Partner™ noise reduction system that keeps the working sound of the dishwasher at 55 dBA. This model is also ENERGY STAR® certified.
The built-in 6-cycle Maytag MDB4949SHZ is a dishwasher in the quiet sound range with a durable motor tested to be one of the most powerful models in this price range.
The 4-blade stainless steel disposer takes care of hard food particles, so there is no need for you to scrape stuck bits of food from your dishes. There are 6 cycles: Standard Wash, Quick Wash, Auto, Rinse and Hold, Sanitize, and Powerblast. Additional Heated Dry, High Temperature Wash, and Delay Start options are also available.
The Powerblast cycle is used for washing hard-to-clean food waste from your kitchenware. Spray jets target the dirty surfaces with high pressure sprays to remove tough stains after which the heater-generated steam dries the items, finishing the cycle.
To make sure the dishware is free of bacteria after the cycle, you can try the Steam Sanitize function that removes all dirt with high temperature steam.
The inner section features 2 racks manufactured with the use of DURAGUARD nylon for longer lifecycle and higher resistance to rust. Both racks provide 14 place settings that allow for various combinations of any dishware types.
The durable stainless steel tub is able to withstand high temperatures which extends the general lifespan of the appliance. The control panel indicates all cycle parameters and is easy to operate with a simple tap of your finger.
Even with the powerful motor and high performance cycles, the Maytag works in the low sound range, peaking at 50 dBA. If you are looking to spend less on electricity bills, this ENERGY STAR® certified dishwasher will help you save on water and power consumption.
With the durable stainless steel door and tall hybrid tub, the built-in Samsung DW80R2031US is a quiet and efficient dishwasher with digital leakage detector and hidden touch controls.
This model has 4 cycles and 5 options with varying levels of water pressure and additional features. The cycles include Standard Wash, Quick Wash, Heavy Duty Wash for pots and pans, and Auto.
The Auto Cycle is notable for using sensors to detect the levels of dirt on your dishware and choosing the right cycle for optimal cleaning. Additional options include Delay Start, Heated Dry, and High Temperature Wash.
The 2 racks are adjustable, increasing holding capacity for different types of kitchenware with 14 available place settings. Lower rack features cup clips and a silverware basket. These can be removed to give you more washing space. The digital leak sensor is extremely sensitive, detecting even 2.4 oz leaks and shutting down the dishwasher to prevent any damage.
The quiet operating sound range of 55 dBA is possible due to the stainless steel material of the door, minimizing the noise during cycles. It’s also ENERGY STAR® certified, helping you save on utility expenses while retaining powerful output.
The Hotpoint HDA2100HCC is a built-in dishwasher with a number of efficient wash cycles and flexible capacity. This model comes with an easy-to-use front control panel and attractive bisque finish.
The lower rack with removable silverware basket and the upper rack with cup shelf and neat holders for stemware provide 12 place settings, allowing to wash a variety of dishes on a single load. The spray arm in this model has complete coverage that can fully clean even large number of items loaded at once.
The wash cycles include Standard Wash, Rinse and Hold, Heavy Wash, Water Saver, and an additional Heated Dry option that can fan-dry your dishes at the end of each cycle. The Heavy Wash cycle is a good option for large items with hard-to-remove stains and dirt, and The Water Saver cycle can wash small loads faster but with reduced water and energy consumption.
Each cycle ends with a recognizable sound to indicate the wash has been completed. Other than the progress indicators, this Hotpoint has a comfortable sound level of 64 dBA during operation which will cause no disruption.
The Danby DDW1804EBSS is a compact built-in dishwasher with reduced energy consumption and accommodating load capacity. Fitted with durable stainless steel, this model offers 6 wash cycles and 4 hot temperature options.
Vinyl-made lower and upper racks hold 8 place settings with additional capacity possible by the removal of in-rack silverware basket. The 6 cycles are Normal, Heavy, Rapid, Eco, Glass and Rinse, while additional modes include 4 hot water settings and Sanitize option that cleans your dishes at 156°F. Detergent is dispensed automatically for each cycle. There is also the Delay Start option for setting up launch time of the desired cycle hours ahead.
The front panel features indicator lights that show cycle progress as well as a digital display for easier control. With the sound range of 52dB, this Danby has a peaceful run that won’t interrupt your conversations, and its compact size with the width just below 18 inches can make a neat fit for your kitchen configuration.
How much is a dishwasher?
There are three price categories for dishwashers: budget, midrange and luxury. Typical price range is between $250 and $700. Installation and additional work may require extra fees.
Is it worth getting a dishwasher repaired?
It depends on the kind of damage your dishwasher sustained as well as the parts you need replacing. Minor failures are generally affordable, but major parts like motors and circulation pumps are expensive to replace and fix. These can cost you between $400 and $600 with labor fees. So in cases of serious damage, it’s recommended to buy a new dishwasher instead of paying a fortune for replacements.
Is it cheaper to repair or replace a dishwasher?
Old models can demand more than half of their original cost for new parts and repairs, so it would be cheaper to purchase a new dishwasher instead. But minor repairs for standard models are more affordable, ranging from $100 to $200.
How often should you service your dishwasher?
Some manufacturers recommend to clean your dishwasher once a month as well as run it through a service wash. To clean a dishwasher, you should first empty it, remove the bottom rack, then check the detergent dispenser for residue and the drain strainer for any clogging. Even if there is no debris, clean the strainer anyway, preferably with a soft-bristled brush. If your model has hard food filters, it’s time to see if they need replacing. Some dishwashers have self-cleaning filters, but it’s a good idea to wash them as well. After you’re done, slide the bottom rack back in. Try to check the condition of your dishwasher every month. If the issue isn’t with any of the inner parts, it’s advised to check the tubing system.
After looking through the best options available in the under $500 price range, you can start weighing all pros and cons to make your final decision. Always consider the size of the dishwasher and how it may fit in your kitchen, then move on to finding the right balance of performance and additional features.
At the top of the list is always the dishwasher’s functionality that should give you the desired range of cycle options. The sound rating is a close second: after all, the peace and quiet of your home depends on how much noise the appliance is going to produce. That said, buying the perfect dishwasher for your kitchen is absolutely possible if you stick to the right approach and acquire proper knowledge of the current market.