If your dishwasher is looking a little worse for wear or rattling like a tin can, you may be wondering how long you should keep it before it’s time for a new one. A recent survey by Canstar Blue revealed that Aussies hold onto their dishwashers for an average of eight years before upgrading.
But with a little TLC – and as long as you follow all maintenance instructions – you can extend the life of your trusty dishwasher. Keep in mind this will also be conditional on other factors like frequency of use, cost, age, brand quality and so on.
So, whether you’re considering ditching your dishwasher or are contemplating a do-over, we’ve got you covered.
Is it better to repair or replace my dishwasher?
This will depend on what the problem is and associated costs. If your dishwasher is still under warranty, fixing it can be your most economical option. If it’s an easy fix like swapping the door seal or dish racks, you can easily (and economically) add a few years to the lifespan of your machine.
Unfortunately, more often than not, repairs to a big-ticket appliance like a dishwasher, can end up costing you more than simply upgrading to a newer model.
Your first point of contact should be your manufacturer who should be able to give you some advice on repair costs versus benefits. It could also be a good idea to consult different retailers for a second opinion. However, if it looks like you’ll end up spending more on service, specialist parts and installation than your dishwasher is worth, it may be time for a new one.
The good news is that there are plenty of new, high-quality models that are cost-effective, energy and water efficient, quiet and loaded with great features!
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Six tips to extend the lifespan of a dishwasher
Here are some basic steps you can take to maximise the life of your kitchen appliance.
Use a powder detergent instead of gel
Avoid using gel-based detergents which often contain chlorine bleach and can cause erosion to the inside of your dishwasher overtime.
Use the hot water setting
The hot water setting on your machine serves a dual-purpose:
- to clean your dishes effectively and kill bacteria
- to prevent gunky build up in your machine and slow deterioration.
Pre-rinse your dishes
Always take the time to run your dishes under hot water and rinse off any food scraps to avoid clogging the sprayers or filters of your machine.
Don’t overload your dishwasher
Overloading puts unnecessary strain on your machine and decreases its efficiency overtime. Hand washing some leftover dishes is a small price to pay to ensure the longevity of your kitchen appliance.
Follow your appliance instructions
Every dishwasher comes with a playbook (aka the owner’s manual) which contains useful maintenance and usage directions that will keep your machine operating optimally for as long as possible. Follow its sage wisdom!
How do I clean my dishwasher?
The glorious machine that washes up all your dirty dishes does indeed need to be cleaned itself. Keeping your dishwasher in prime condition will improve its drainage, increase cleaning efficiency and ensure the longevity of your appliance.
As a general rule, you should aim to deep clean your dishwasher at least once a month. Follow these three simple steps to make your appliance as good as new.
- Clear your drains of gunk: Grime can be the death of your dishwasher overtime. That’s why it’s important to get down and dirty to remove any trapped particles and mineral or detergent residue in your machine. First, pull out the bottom dish rack and inspect the drain underneath. Remove any fallen scraps with a wet sponge or cloth and wipe it clean.
- Wash the internal filter: The reality is that if you filter isn’t clean, nothing else will be and that includes your dishes. Therefore, your next step should be to remove and thoroughly wash out your machine’s internal filter. Use a plastic brush to lightly scrub off gunk until clean.
- Run a wash cycle with vinegar or baking soda: Once a month, fill up a measuring cup with white vinegar or baking soda, place it on the top rack and run a hot water cycle to neutralise any leftover bacteria and sterilise your appliance. If you’re not confident going down the DIY route, you can always opt for commercially available cleaning products to clear out the inside of your dishwasher.
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Which dishwasher brands last the longest?
Miele took out the top gong for overall customer satisfaction in Canstar Blue’s latest dishwasher review and consumer reports suggest its dishwashers can stand the test of time and last up to 20 years.
Fisher & Paykel
Dishwashers from this manufacturer across the ditch (New Zealand) can last up to a decade or more. Fisher & Paykel was rated second best for overall customer satisfaction in our latest dishwasher review.
This brand offers a comprehensive range of dishwashers with an expected life expectancy of about 10 years. Bosch received four stars for overall customer satisfaction in our latest product review.
LG may be best known as the top dog of consumer electronics, but the brand notched up a four-star rating for overall customer satisfaction in Canstar Blue’s latest dishwasher review. LG’s dishwashers should usually last between 10 and 15 years.
Dishlex is a budget-friendly kitchen appliance specialist. Its dishwashers can last up to 10 years with some TLC. This brand was rated fifth best for overall customer satisfaction in our latest dishwasher review.
This brand specialises in freestanding dishwashers, receiving a three-star rating for overall customer satisfaction in our latest product review. Westinghouse dishwashers can last between five and 10 years.
What type of dishwasher should I buy?
Dishwashers come in all shapes and sizes which can make it hard to drill down on what you need for your home and family, in terms of capacity and special features. Other important factors to keep front of mind are durability, reliability and value for money.
Luckily, we’ve reviewed and rated some most popular models to help your decision. So, make sure to compare the different brands on our website to make sure you’re getting the best dishwasher for you.
Picture credits: Leszek Glasner / Shutterstock.com, / Lazy_Bear / Shutterstock.com, / nikkytok / Shutterstock.com, / Bega / Shutterstock.com, / Sherbak_photo / Shutterstock.com.