Dishwashers are machines that wash dishes, utensils, glasses, and other things that you use when you prepare and eat food. You simply load the machine, add detergent, and push a button. Dishwashers automatically spray hot water with the detergent over and through the dirty dishes, removing and sanitizing your dishes. Then, hot water is again sprayed to clean off any left over residue from the detergent. Some dishwashers have an extra rinse cycle. A dishwasher might also have a heating cycle at the end of the process to automatically dry your dishes.
Today's dishwashers are available with many features. For example, you have three choices of controls, rotary, the most basic style, push button, and electronic, the most expensive style. You can find dishwashers with as few as two wash cycles up to twelve wash cycles. Some dishwashers will allow to you select short cycles for dishes that do not need a heavy duty scrub, saving you on electricity. You may also be able to turn off the hot air after the wash cycle has finished for further savings on your power bill. Most dishwashers today have dirt sensors as a standard feature. Dirt sensors are supposed to help control the amount of water that is used and how long a given cycle runs. Some dishwashers have half wash cycles, although some think that this is a waste of water and energy. Some models come with food disposers which help get rid of larger chunks of food that were not removed from your dishes prior to being placed in the dishwasher. There are different levels of sound dampening, an important feature because dishwashers can be noisy.
What to Look for in a Dishwasher
If you have a choice between having your dishwasher clean the filter or having you clean the filter, you might want to choose to clean the filter yourself. Models which allow you to clean the filter are not as noisy as those which are "self-cleaning." Dishwashers include racks to hold your dishes while they are being washed. Some racks can be moved or adjusted to accommodate a larger dishes, pots, or pans. You will also want to look at the capacity of a given dishwasher and its size. Dishwashers can be portable, free standing, built-in, or compact, giving you many choices to fit your requirements.
For more information see the following article from HomeDoctor.net: Choosing a Dishwasher.
Energy Costs and Savings
Make sure that you consider a dishwasher's energy rating before you make a purchase. The higher the energy rating, the less efficient a dishwasher is. It might be worth the money to spend a little more up front on a dishwasher with a lower energy rating to save more money over time. Also, compare warranties before you make your final decision.