Canstar Blue’s 2019 dishwasher review has seen Miele, Fisher & Paykel, Bosch, LG, Dishlex, and Westinghouse compared and rated on factors including performance, design, value for money & overall customer satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
The last thing you want to do after a big meal is wash the dishes, so having a trusty dishwasher to take care of the mess is extremely convenient. You should think carefully and do your research before buying any new household appliances – but this is especially true when it comes to dishwashers. You wouldn’t want your dishwasher to suddenly break down when you have a whole mountain of dishes just waiting to be cleaned. Dishwasher disappointment is definitely a thing!
So, where do you turn in your search for the best dishwasher you can buy? If our customer reviews over recent years are any indication, you’ll likely need to splash the cash if you want maximum bang for your dishwashing buck. But we’ll come to latest deals shortly.
Each year, we survey thousands of Aussie households to learn about which dishwashers are cleaning up in the kitchen – and which are leaving consumers ‘hanging out to dry’! Once again, all the major brands have featured in our 2019 results, but only one achieved a five-star overall review from its customers – Miele. In fact, it’s the SIXTH year in a row that the German appliance powerhouse has been rated the best of the bunch.
Miele is generally one of the most expensive dishwasher brands on the market, but Australians clearly see the value in spending a little extra. In addition to overall satisfaction, Miele was also rated five stars in regards to internal layout, performance, quietness and design.
Canstar Blue’s latest dishwasher review saw six major brands compared and rated in the following order for overall customer satisfaction:
It was four stars overall for Fisher & Paykel, Bosch, LG and Dishlex, followed by Westinghouse on three stars. Five-star reviews were in fairly short supply in this year’s review, with Dishlex being the only other brand to get top marks on value for money.
So, do you really need to spend thousands of dollars on a Miele dishwasher, or can you find perfectly good quality and value at a cheaper price? Read on as we provide a guide to the dishwasher brands in our latest comparison and see what they have to offer, and at what price.
Miele produces a wide range of built-in, integrated and freestanding dishwashers. They have a patented 3D adjustable cutlery tray for those bulky utensils, with shorter cycle options, ‘Knock2Open’ handle-less opening system and intuitive user interface. In addition to its features, the German brand is also known to be a class-leader when it comes to both water and energy efficiency, boasting highly respectable star ratings on both counts. Expect 3.5 stars and above for most models on water efficiency ratings, with 4.5 and above for energy consumption.
However, all of this will come at a cost. Most Miele dishwashers are priced around the $2,000 mark, with its cheapest model – the Active Freestanding dishwasher – costing $1,399 RRP*. The fully integrated range goes up to as much as $4,099! But that doesn’t seem to worry Aussie customers, rating Miele five stars for every category in this year’s review, except value for money where it received four stars.
Miele’s dishwasher range includes:
Fisher & Paykel is a company from New Zealand and some of its products are still made across the ditch. Fisher & Paykel is perhaps best-known in the dishwasher world for its innovative dishdrawer solutions, where instead of a folding door, you get a drawer. This makes it easy for apartment dwellers short on space, or for those who just want to plonk their dishes in from the top. Fisher & Paykel does, however, also offer traditional dishwashers with drop down doors.
While the dishdrawer dishwashers are slightly less energy efficient than their traditional counterparts, the convenience factor is notable. Fisher & Paykel’s dishwashers start at under $1,000, while the more expensive models can cost about $2,200, with double dishdrawer models costing a little extra. Fisher & Paykel was rated a respectable four stars across the board in our latest review.
Fisher & Paykel’s dishwasher range includes:
Like Miele, Bosch is another German appliance manufacturer with a large range of dishwashers. Many are still made in Germany, but others are made in other European countries. For German-made models, you can expect to pay a slight price premium, however there is still a range of lower prices to suit a lot of Aussie customers. Some cost less than $1,000, while others cost well in excess of $2,000.
Bosch dishwashers come equipped with a wide range of rack options and flexibility, and many models are modular, meaning that their small size can easily fit in more places. Many models boast separate compartments for wine glasses, with ‘GlassSecure’ protective trays for protecting crystal. Many also boast five-star WELS water efficiency ratings, with some consuming as little as 10-12L per cycle. Bosch was a solid performer in most recent dishwasher review, recording four stars for overall satisfaction and for every other rated variable.
Bosch’s dishwasher range includes:
Adding to the spread of countries represented in this report, LG is a South Korean electronics giant, known for feature-rich appliances, from TVs to mobile phones, to washing machines and dishwashers. Some of LG’s dishwashers feature ‘Smart Diagnosis’, whereby you can use a smartphone app to send troubleshooting information from your dishwasher directly to LG’s customer service team. You can also expect some models to feature ‘QuadWash’, which is stated to help clean dishes from multiple angles.
Most models also feature smart racks, which have many adjustable elements to suit the wide variety of glasses and dishes the typical Aussie household uses. LG’s dishwashers start at around $1,000, but you can expect to pay a little more for the most high-end models, up to $1,800. LG was rated four stars for overall satisfaction, value for money, performance and design. It was three stars for internal layout and quietness.
LG’s dishwasher range includes:
Dishlex is a kitchen appliance specialist, owned by the Electrolux group. Some of its products are still made here in Australia, while others are made in either Asia or Europe. Dishlex has a strong focus on budget-friendly prices and simple and effective dishwashing. Dishlex dishwashers cost as little as around $500, while the dearest can be had for around $1,000.
Features are fairly basic, with many models having simple rotary dials to choose your wash setting, and standard yet spacious internal layouts. Most impressive, however, is that most of Dishlex’s dishwashers have smart load sensing, which adjusts the water level to suit your load, which can save on water costs. Some models use less than 12L per cycle. Dishlex rounds out the four-star brands for overall satisfaction. It was also rated four stars for internal layout, performance and design, but received just three stars for quietness. However, it was rated best on value for money.
Dishlex’s dishwasher range includes:
Born out of the USA, Westinghouse is also now an Electrolux-owned company, and makes all manner of home appliances, including dishwashers. Westinghouse specialises in freestanding dishwashers, with the cheapest models sitting at around the $900 mark, while the most expensive costs around $1,000. All of the models are the standard 60cm width with 15 place settings.
Features that are commonly packed in include cycle sensors to help with water efficiency, super-fast wash cycles, hygiene and water safety systems, as well as adjustable rack solutions. Many models boast WELS ratings of better than 4.5 stars, with some consuming less than 13L per cycle. Rounding out this year’s review, Westinghouse was rated three stars for overall satisfaction and all other categories.
Westinghouse’s dishwasher range includes:
Aside from the major dishwasher manufacturers compared in this year’s review, there are plenty of other brands that may be worth a look into, including:
Swedish appliance giant Electrolux – while already featured in the ratings with its Westinghouse and Dishlex dishwashers – has a couple of its own models on offer. Expect features such as delay start times to make use of any off peak energy tariffs, Aqua Control to protect against over flooding and adjustable baskets to fit in different sized dishes.
One of its dishwashers – the Electrolux ESF8735ROX ComfortLift – is specifically designed with a lower basket that can simply be raised up instead of pulled out to provide a more ‘comfortable’ height to load and unload dishes. In terms of energy efficiency ratings, all Electrolux models earn 4.5 stars. Given some of the high-tech features, Electrolux’s dishwashers cost between $1,400 and $2,000.
The Italian home appliance brand, Smeg has a focus on style and technology, keeping up with the latest consumer trends. It offers freestanding, underbench, fully-integrated and semi-integrated dishwashers, with most of the Smeg models being the standard 60cm width. It has a number of high-end features to look out for within its line-up, including versatile baskets, flexi-duo cutlery trays and Smeg’s ‘Aquatest’ sensor, stated to automatically adjust water, temperature and wash action to suit the load.
With uniformly high quality, there are no cheap Smeg dishwashers. This is because even the most basic model includes more features than the basic models of other brands. Prices start at around $1,500, with most models costing under $1,750 and maxing out at the $3,550 mark for the fully integrated units and the retro style range.
Asko is a Swedish appliance brand known for making innovative and stylish appliances – most notably dishwashers. Asko’s dishwasher range encompasses both built-in and fully-integrated models, with the latter often coming in stylish woodgrain finishes to match your kitchen. Asko dishwashers feature highly flexible rack solutions, with lock-in clips for light objects, an upper cutlery tray for maximum storage capacity, a crystal glass racking facility for wine glasses, and intuitive control interfaces for ease of use.
Most of the Asko range features 3.5 stars for energy efficiency ratings and 4.5 stars for water use. Its premium Under Bench dishwasher (DBI865IGXXL.S.AU) boasts a 6 star rating for water efficiency. Many models are available for less than $1,500, but most are above this mark, with some costing closer to $3,000.
Our recent survey of consumers who have recently bought a new dishwasher identified the following insights:
Any dishwasher worth its salt should be able to fulfil the most basic task of washing your dishes at the end of the day, but there are several factors worth considering to ensure that you buy the best dishwasher for your household’s needs, including size, capacity and internal layout.
The standard size of a dishwasher is 60cm wide and 60cm deep, but the height and width of dishwashers can vary significantly between brands and specific model types. Slimline dishwashers can be considerably smaller at around 45cm wide. Be sure to take measurements of the kitchen space that you have in mind before choosing which dishwasher is best for you. Whichever type you go with, it’s recommended you leave a little space around your dishwasher for ventilation.
A dishwasher’s capacity is measured by the number of ‘place settings’ it can accommodate in a single wash cycle. Most freestanding and fully-integrated dishwashers will come with a capacity of 14 place settings, but some high-end models can be even larger. Smaller dishwasher types often have smaller capacities of around 6-7 place settings. Consider your daily use of dishes and cutlery to decide what capacity would be best for your household. Having to use a small dishwasher twice a day, rather than a large model once, is going to result in higher ongoing costs.
Anyone who has ever felt the frustration of not being able to properly accommodate different sized cooking utensils, saucepans or plates into a dishwasher will be able to appreciate the importance of a good – and flexible – internal layout. If you regularly need to wash large and unusual items, look for a dishwasher that provides maximum flexibility – including being able to move or remove other internal elements to create extra space.
Water and energy-efficiency are also important considerations when picking a new dishwasher. Australia’s Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (WELS) rates appliances based on how much water they use to get the job done. The labels show star ratings from zero to six, as well as how many litres of water will likely be used. The higher the star rating, the more water efficient the appliance will be.
It’s a similar deal when it comes to energy ratings, with the number of stars indicating the efficiency of an appliance. Dishwashers with high energy and water ratings will typically cost more to buy, but the trade-off is you’ll stand to save more over time through reduced utility bills.
In addition to finding out which dishwasher brands are rated best in Australia, our research identified the key purchase decision factors for consumers, with price being most important. All of us want to bag a bargain on our major household appliances, but keep our ratings in mind because they reflect what is important to consumers once that dishwasher is plugged in at home, operating on a daily basis.
The average cost of a new dishwasher is around $400 to $1,000. However, there are some models that cost as much as $5,000. Our latest research found that Aussie households spend an average of $820 on new dishwashers. Keep in mind that there are also additional costs to take into account like delivery and installation charges, plus the cost of removing your old dishwasher.
While price is very important – and no one wants to pay more than they have to – it’s probably best to focus on a dishwasher’s performance credentials first and foremost. You wouldn’t want to purchase a ‘dirt’ cheap dishwasher and simply end up replacing it every few years. With the average life expectancy for dishwashers bought by our survey respondents being eight years, it suggests that buying one is a long-term investment and should take some serious thought. If you can also get a great deal on the price, that’s even better!
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
Picture credits: Click and Photo/shutterstock.com, Menzl Guenter/shutterstock.com, Iakov Filimonov/shutterstock.com
*Prices taken from respective websites, correct as of January 2020
Here is a full list of dishwasher brands available to buy in Australia:
There are plenty of retailers that sell dishwashers either in-store or online. These include:
Each brand offers a number of dishwashers within its range. We’ve taken a comparative model (most being 60cm freestanding models) from each brand in regards to capacity to help you compare price as well as energy efficiency and water efficiency:
|Model||RRP||Energy Rating||Water Efficiency (WELS) Rating|
|Miele Front Jubilee Freestanding Dishwasher G4930SCCLST||$1,499||3.5 stars||5 stars|
|Asko D5424WH Under Bench Dishwasher||$1,199||3.5 stars||4 stars|
|Smeg DWA6314X Freestanding Dishwasher||$1,890||3.5 stars||5.5 stars|
|Fisher & Paykel DW60FC2X1 Freestanding Dishwasher||$1,459||3.5 stars||4.5 stars|
|Bosch SMS50E32AU Serie 4 Freestanding Dishwasher||$999||3.5 stars||4 stars|
|Westinghouse WSF6606W Freestanding Dishwasher||$738||3 stars||4.5 stars|
|Dishlex DSF6106W Freestanding Dishwasher||$739||3 stars||4.5 stars|
|Electrolux ESF8735ROX ComfortLift Under Bench Dishwasher||$1,849||3 stars||4.5 stars|
|LG XD5B14WH QuadWash Freestanding Dishwasher||$999||4 stars||5 stars|
Source: Appliances Online and Winning Appliances, June 2019
Our latest customer satisfaction research saw a number of brands rated best in different categories:
Canstar Blue surveyed 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and used a new dishwasher in the last 3 years – in this case, 529 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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*Prices correct as of publication date.