Best Dishwashers In India (Reviewed in 2019) – The Buyers Guide

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The use of a dishwasher is a relatively new concept in India, the same as the washing machine was in the mid-90s. Most households in India still rely on a maid for washing dishes and scrubbing the Kadai.

Between 2018-24, the Indian dishwasher market is expected to grow by almost 11% annually, according to a study. However, till now its use is restricted to the larger cities.

But just as people have come to embrace a Swift or DZire as the standard mode of transport in place of the dinky little Maruti 800 two decades ago, so too the dishwasher market continues to expand handsomely. This market has shown similar growth to the Air Conditioners market in India when AC was considered to be a luxury good.

If you want to buy a dishwasher, you are looking to make a reasonable investment. For most models, the price is above INR 35,000. That is why we have put together a detailed guide outlining the best dishwashers in the Indian market and the features you must be aware of while making the purchase.

Best Dishwashers in India (The List)

Last update on 2019-10-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

1. Bosch Built-in Dishwasher, 45.0 Kg – White, SMV46KX01E  

Bosch Built-in Dishwasher, 45.0 Kg - White, SMV46KX01E
Bosch Built-in Dishwasher 45.0kg
  • Capacity: 13 place settings
  • Installation Type: Built-in
  • Item weight: 45 kg
  • Item dimensions: 81.5 cm x 59.8 cm x 55 cm

Bosch is the most well-known name among dishwasher manufacturers in India. This brand new dishwasher is built-in, which means it cannot be moved from one home to another.

It can start at a preprogrammed time with the help of an auto timer. This helps you to wash the dishes conveniently at any time of the day regardless of your work schedule and other engagements.

The cleaning itself is guided by the advanced electronics that Bosch specializes in. It will always make sure that the utensils and plates are washed thoroughly with not a trace that remains. The water usage and temperature are executed flawlessly time after time, providing the best possible cleaning of your dishes and kitchen utensils.

The advanced washer comes with a Vario Speed program that allows quick cleaning in one-third of the usual time. If you are in a hurry, select Quick Wash, and in a few minutes, you will have clean dishes. Of course like all good dishwashers it not only cleans but also dries and there is no need to wipe the wet dishes with a towel or kitchen paper.

The Load Sensor mechanism saves water as far as possible and uses less power too. The Bosch SMV46KX01E is efficient at what it does and does not waste resources. 

During our tests, we found that underlying all of the mechanism, there is a high power motor at its core. The Eco Silence drive is brushless and compact. Advanced design and careful attention to manufacturing make sure that it works for years without complaint. 

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Pros
  • A product from the most trusted manufacturer of dishwashers
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Exceptional fit and finish
  • Aqua Stop technology prevents operation if there is leakage and assures safety
  • 10-year warranty against rusting
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Cons
  • The built-in design makes it impractical for those with a transferable job
  • Those who are new to dishwashers might find it hard to operate at first

2. LG 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (DFB424FW, White color) 

LG 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (DFB424FW, White color)
LG 14 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 14 place settings 
  • Installation Type: Free-standing
  • Item weight: 49 kg
  • Item dimensions: 60 cm x 60 cm x 85 cm

The fame of Lucky Goldstar or LG in manufacturing durable and efficient home and kitchen appliances has grown many folds during their presence in India for about 25 years. 

LG products are uniquely adapted to Indian conditions that many foreign brands cannot handle. High pollution levels, hard water, salinity in coastal regions reduce the life of long-lasting machines considerably.

LG usually finds a way to Indianise what it sells appropriately. Our extensive tests on the DFB424FW did not disappoint, and LG has brought another winner to the market. 

LG’s patented TrueSteam technology ensures that boiling water reaches every nook and cranny and cleans thoroughly. No matter how much we tried our luck at the lab with greasy spoons and plates, it washed perfectly every time. And nothing less was expected.

The QuadWash feature sprays out high-speed jets that are necessary to remove oily stains and food. The enormous pressure created by this system shows in the impeccable wash.

An innovative feature is the adjustable racks that can be moved around as you wish to create a configuration that is perfect for your family.

Entertain guests with nary a thought about washing up afterward since 14 plate capacity takes care of it all. The direct-drive motor can revolve the load at varying speeds as needed. The lack of a belt and pulley system means less wear and tear.

As with all LG appliances, you can use the SmartThinQ app to monitor the performance of the machine. It allows you to figure out any malfunction, and LG’s service engineers will set it right in no time. The vast after-sales service network of LG is truly an advantage.

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Pros
  • Free-standing and can be moved from home to home with little effort
  • 9 different wash programs make it easy to handle all types of tasks
  • Heated water cleans thoroughly
  • Adjustable racks allow you to set it up for your family correctly
  • 2 years comprehensive and 10 years warranty on motor
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Cons
  • Uses a lot of water
  • Needs a thorough explanation and demo to operate

3. Bosch Built-In Dishwasher, 60 cm (Silver, SMI25AS00E) 

Bosch Built-In Dishwasher, 60 cm (Silver, SMI25AS00E)
Bosch Built-In Dishwasher, 60 cm
  • Capacity: 12 place settings  
  • Installation Type: Built-in  
  • Item weight: 33 kg  
  • Item dimensions: 81.5 cm x 59.8 cm x 57.3 cm 

The product looks elegant and a perfect fit for your modern kitchen. But drop-dead gorgeous looks is not all that this machine boasts of. 

The stainless steel chassis of the Bosch SMI25AS00E has an eye-catching brushed metal finish with a cluster of conveniently placed knobs and controls at the top.  

During our tests, we found that it can clean grimy tableware with only 10 liters of water. This is far less than what you would use for cleaning with a tub of water. It is also quite silent and emits only 48 dB of noise. That is the same as a television playing at a low volume.  

Equipped with four different temperature settings, it can clean the most stubborn wok with no effort at all. Large in capacity it allows you to clean utensils that have been collecting throughout the day in one attempt.

The control panel has a load sensor and the wash selection programs. There are also LED warning lights for the rinse aid refill indicator.

One of the problems with appliances such as these is safety, especially if there is a toddler at home. The childproof lock and controls take care of these aspects, and you can be worry-free. Just set the Auto Start program, and the Bosch dishwasher will begin to work at a preprogrammed time. 

If you have to leave in a hurry, use the Vario Speed and cut the washing time in half. Aqua Stop will not allow the machine to start operation if it detects a leak. This is a real lifesaver.

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Pros
  • Can handle a large number of dishes
  • Very silent and unobtrusive
  • Child lock provides safety
  • Durable stainless steel body
  • Aqua Sensor stain detection system works perfectly
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Cons
  • Cannot be transported to another home if needed
  • Requires a learning curve to understand how to operate

4. Bosch 12 Place Setting Dishwashers, Free Standing, Silver INOX, SMS66GI01I 

Bosch 12 Place Setting Dishwashers, Free Standing, Silver INOX, SMS66GI01I
Bosch 12 Place Setting Dishwashers
  • Capacity: 12 place settings
  • Installation Type: Free-standing
  • Item weight: 45 kg
  • Item dimensions: 84.5 cm x 60 cm x 60 cm

Bosch has the largest array of dishwashers in the Indian market. The SMS66GI01I is easily one of the best free-standing dishwashers that we tested. 

The machine has no less than 6 different wash programs. You could use the high heat 70° C option to clean the most stubborn grease from your Kadai or the gentler 45° C for Quick Wash. 

The name Bosch stands for quality. Throughout our tests, that is precisely what we found in this dishwasher. The Eco Silence motor works quietly in the background. No matter what the weight the direct drive mechanism takes care of it without fail. There is no change in the rotation speed throughout the wash cycle, making it possible to clean utensils spotlessly. 

The biggest worry with these appliances is that they would rust from the inside out. After all, this is expensive home machinery, and you expect a long life. The corrosion is worse due to the hard water supplied in most cities of India. But worry not since Bosch offers a 10-year warranty on the body. This type of durability and assurance is hard to find.

An intuitive Auto Wash program perfectly measures water and heats it to the desired temperature. The machine is entirely automatic, and no human intervention is needed. If you want, you could probably watch tv or take a short nap while it hums away. In the end, you will find perfectly cleaned and dried tableware and utensils.

A competent appliance, it is highly satisfactory in its performance and loaded with top-end features. Also, when you buy Bosch, you are assured that you have high-end German build quality on your side. 

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Pros
  • Ease of install
  • Uses very little water
  • Perfectly designed console
  • 12 place settings
  • 6 wash programs
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Cons
  • Consumes too much power
  • Maintenance cost may be high

5. Whirlpool 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (PowerClean Pro-WFO3O33 DLX IN, Inox) 

Whirlpool 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (PowerClean Pro-WFO3O33 DLX IN, Inox)
Whirlpool 14 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 14 place settings
  • Installation Type: Free-standing
  • Item weight: 47 kg
  • Item dimensions: 67.5 cm x 65 cm x 91 cm

Whirlpool is a highly respected American company that makes home appliances for over a century. Their products are considered both advanced and reliable. The PowerClean Pro-WFO3O33 did not disappoint and showed the same degree of trustworthiness in our test, as shown by Whirlpool air conditioners and refrigerators. 

Just one hour. That is what it takes for this machine to clean a considerable number of dishes, woks, frying pans, and cutlery. Its biggest USP is its quiet efficiency and that it gets the job done without any hassle. 

The patented PowerClean technology uses nozzles that spray water at very high pressure. The water is preheated by an inbuilt heater. Hot water and high pressure do a remarkable job. 

We put in very greasy kitchenware to find out its effectiveness. On every such test, the PowerClean Pro-WFO3O33 passed with flying colors. 

The racks can be set up just as you wish. From heavy skillets to large base Kadai, it can all fit in perfectly. Fitting in a pressure cooker is also never a problem with this machine. 

It puts out only 43 dB of noise. That is just as loud as a whisper. Since dishwashers in India receive no BEE Star Rating, we found the European A+++  certification to be impressive.

Many would love the fact that it is Made in Europe and imported. That certainly adds a particular class to your kitchen and you are assured that the buyers abroad who are uncompromising about the quality are buying machines from the same assembly line. 

To top it all, it consumes only 9.5 liters of water in every wash cycle. If you are resource-conscious, that will make you quite happy. 

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Pros
  • 11 different wash programs
  • Easy to transport
  • Highly affordable
  • Suitable for families of 4
  • Half load quick option
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Cons
  • Max temperature is 65° C is not high enough
  • The plastic cladding at the bottom can get damaged easily

6. Faber 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (FFSD 8PR 14S, Silver, Inbuilt Heater) 

Faber 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (FFSD 8PR 14S, Silver, Inbuilt Heater)
Faber 14 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 14 place setting
  • Installation Type: Free-standing
  • Item weight: 25 kg
  • Item dimensions: 60 cm x 60 cm x 82.5 cm

Faber is a famed Italian kitchen appliance company that has been in the market for over six decades. The name Faber is now common in urban India due to its premium kitchen chimneys and hoods. 

Kitchen chimneys remain Faber’s primary product, but of late they have diversified into dishwashers and other appliances also.

The silver-colored FFSD 8PR 14S has a minimalistic design that is engrossing. There are six toggle switches and an LED display. No knobs or cluttered letters showing various functions. 

Our tests showed that the interior is as impressive. There are eight wash programs – Glass, Rapid, Soak, Auto, Intensive Wash, Normal Wash, Eco Wash, and 90 Minute Wash. The three spraying jets ensure that all of the load is washed equally well. It has three-dimensional coverage that is on par with the best, and all of our tests were satisfactory. 

Since dishwashers have heavy-duty 2,000-watt motors and operate for an hour or two, it is essential that they save as much electricity as possible. Unfortunately, they are not popular enough to be issued BEE energy efficiency ratings. 

The European A+++ is a valid substitute, and you can be assured that the machine is indeed not guzzling power. 

Faber includes a Dual Zone washing system that provides different settings for different areas. This means an extremely greasy frying pan and few lightly soiled plates can be cleaned together. Since wash cycles are time-consuming, this is an instrumental innovation.

At 44 decibels, you are not likely to hear the Faber whir silently in the background as you bid goodbye to your dinner guests. The drying temperature can be raised to provide extra drying and bring more hygiene to your kitchen. 

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Pros
  • Top of the line European manufacturer
  • Minimalistic look that is fascinating
  • Completely knob free operation
  • Steel tub with long life
  • Half load option for a swift wash
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Cons
  • The removable racks are not well designed
  • Push-button panel may need replacement after a year or two

7. Siemens 12 Place Settings Dishwasher (SN256I01GI, Silver Inox) 

7. Siemens 12 Place Settings Dishwasher (SN256I01GI, Silver Inox)
Siemens 12 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 12 place settings  
  • Installation Type: Free-standing 
  • Item weight: 43.5 kg  
  • Item dimensions: 60 cm x 60 cm x 84.5 cm 

If you dread being in your kitchen at the end of the day, then the Siemens dishwasher is the perfect solution that you have been looking for. Siemens is a world-renowned manufacturer or all types of electrical and industrial products, and SN256I01GI is their first foray in the dishwasher market in India. 

If you have a family with no more than 5 members, then a 12 place setting dishwasher is ideal for your use. It is to be noted that each place setting is meant for multiple pieces of tableware consisting of a dinner plate, dessert plate, glass, soup bowls, spoons, knives, and forks.

There is no longer the need to stand and wash crockery and cutlery under the tap as the Siemens dishwasher efficiently takes over the chore. The machine does not require you to do a light rinsing before it washes and will flawlessly fit into your kitchen. 

Requiring only 10 liters of water, it made every dish we could throw at it sparkle. Versatile and efficient it can heat water to 65° C with its inbuilt heater and run silently in the background while you do something else. 

For removing the toughest spice stains, it can even heat to 70° C and clean utensils and Kadai spotlessly. The steam wash option is another effective way to get rid of grime and slurry that collects on cookware. Siemens takes great pride in its iQdrive motor that is silent and long-lasting. The brushless motor works tirelessly for years, and the fantastic build quality impressed us during the endurance tests.

In the HygienePlus mode it can remove up to 99.99% of all bacteria claims Siemens and we see no reason to doubt its claim seeing the otherwise brilliant t performance.

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Pros
  • Futuristic looks
  • 6 wash programs
  • Versatile design and function
  • Vario Speed motor that changes speed automatically
  • Cleans cutlery and crockery equally well
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Cons
  • The heating element can stop functioning due to hard water
  • Inefficient heat pump needs proper maintenance

8. Voltas Beko 8 Place Settings Dishwasher (DT8S, Silver) 

Voltas Beko 8 Place Settings Dishwasher (DT8S, Silver)
Voltas Beko 8 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 8 place settings  
  • Installation Type: Free-standing  
  • Item weight: 25.5 kg  
  • Item dimensions: 50 cm x 55 cm x 59.5 cm

All good things come in small packages. This proverb comes to mind when you first see the Voltas Beko dishwasher.  

Standing less than 2 ft tall this Lilliput packs quite a punch. Voltas has marketed this as a tabletop device. That would in our estimation mean it can fit neatly on top of a front-loading washing machine. It is light in weight, which makes that possible, and most front loaders have a sturdy top for stacking another new appliance.  

Priced amazingly low it does not lack in features. Ideal for a small family with three members it can tackle a lot of utensils in spite of its diminutive stature.  

The inbuilt heater gives it the capacity to heat water quickly. With 6 wash programs, you can with ease clean any type of spoiled utensil in no time at all. The motor is quiet and purrs away doing its task with no effort at all.  

Although it has a low profile, it can fit in quite large woks easily and clean the toughest stains. A single wash cycle uses only 8 liters of water and helps conservation.  

Modern apartments are small, and the kitchen is cramped. Not many people live in homes that are big enough to fit regular sized washers. Voltas Becko has stolen a march over its rivals by opening up a segment of the market that did not exist. 

In an era when bigger is better, it has made the small attractive. This is quite an impressive feat in our books.  

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Pros
  • Lightweight yet durable
  • Backed by the goodwill of Tatas who offer the best products
  • Extensive service center network
  • Small and perfect for a family of 3
  • Easy to maintain and transport
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Cons
  • Leaks water at times
  • Wash cycles are very prolonged

9. IFB Neptune SX1 Fully-automatic Front-loading Dishwasher (15 Place Settings, Stainless Steel) 

IFB Neptune SX1 Fully-automatic Front-loading Dishwasher (15 Place Settings, Stainless Steel)
IFB Neptune SX1 Fully-automatic
  • Capacity: 15 place settings
  • Installation Type: free-standing
  • Item weight: 52 kg
  • Item dimensions: 59.8 cm x 59.6 cm x 84.5 cm

Coming on the heels of the tiny Voltas Becko, the IFB Neptune SX1 is a Goliath. This is about as large as a home dishwasher gets. Commercial machines are, of course, far larger.

But the price is quite reasonable for an appliance of this size and sophistication. IFB was once a technological partner of Bosch, and it is no surprise that it launched dishwashers that challenge the German brand in every aspect.

With 8 wash programs, you do not ever have to worry about cleaning dirty utensils. Just load it all into the cavernous interior of this device and be assured that the task will get done in an hour. From delicate highball glasses to clunky cookware, it handles all with equal élan.

The racks fold whichever way you want and change position. There is even a mug rack on top. An A++ rated motor hums along smoothly and completed every wash cycle with the perfect ease you would expect of an appliance made by IFB. 

But the motor is highly energy-efficient and consumes only 0.94 units per hour. This made it the most energy-efficient device we tested in our lab.

As with washing machine, in washers to IFB has installed its patented water softener. Hard water not only destroys the steel drum and body but also does not foam quickly making washing of any type difficult. In our tests, only IFB has time and again shown this innovative feature.

The washer is quite silent at 49 decibels and does not create a hindrance. IFB also offers the VX1, which is a 12 place setting version of the same washer and costs INR 6,000 less.

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Pros
  • Well built and durable
  • Dual washing arms for better cleaning
  • Low consumption of water at only 9 liters per cycle
  • Efficient motor
  • Not very expensive (with a cheaper 12 place version available)
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Cons
  • The half load mode does not operate well
  • Hard to understand the menu

10. BPL 12 Place Settings Dishwasher (D812S27A, Silver, Inbuilt Heater) 

BPL 12 Place Settings Dishwasher (D812S27A, Silver, Inbuilt Heater)
BPL 12 Place Settings Dishwasher
  • Capacity: 12 place settings
  • Installation Type: Free-standing
  • Item weight: 41.5 kg
  • Item dimensions: 59.8 cm x 60 cm x 84.5 cm

The USP of BPL D812S27A is that it is really affordable. In fact, it costs less than most 7 kg of front loading washing machines.

Bosch and IFB are fine brands, but they are expensive. In this niche, BPL has made a place for itself with the D812S27A.

But BPL has in no way compromised on build quality. It is solid looking and inspires confidence as a buyer. In our tests, the 8 wash programs (no less than the Faber) worked perfectly. From badly stained ceramic coffee mugs to cumbersome steel Kadais, this machine did not even blink at any task.

While the outside is beautifully designed, the interior is not shoddy either.  With a powerful motor that consumes 2,100 watts at peak load, the washer can clean and dry without any pause.

An inbuilt heater that works smoothly can provide warm water in a jiffy for the most hardened grease to melt away. The configurable racks allow you to customize it easily as per your needs. From tall glasses to stubby saucepans, they all fit snugly into the well-designed baskets.

With very low noise, there is no disturbance at all, and since it is fully automatic, there is no need for you to wait. You could complete your daily routine while it works in the background. Water consumption is the same as any machine of this size at 10 liters per hour.

After extensive tests, it is safe to say that BPL has manufactured a dishwasher that rivals the best in the business.

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Pros
  • A convenient and low-cost solution to dishwashing
  • Heavy-duty motor
  • Childproof door
  • LED display with push-button operation
  • Omni-directional water jets for better cleaning
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Cons
  • Leaks water at times
  • Requires a home install by company technicians

The Best Brands In The Dishwasher in the Indian Market 

1. Bosch

Undoubtedly, Bosch dominates the market with the maximum number of built-in and free-standing models. It became well known after WWII as a world leader in making automotive parts. It’s headquartered in Germany.

The precision of German engineering and design is something that does not need any retelling. The Bosch dishwashers you can buy in India are all solidly manufactured, by which we mean they were built tough to handle years of use. 

This shows in the fact that all the models have a 10-year warranty against rust, which is one of the biggest enemies of dish and clothes washers.

It is not that the products are priced far higher than rivals. Of course, it is slightly more expensive, but the high quality has a cost that must be met by the customer. 

If you wish that your cookware and crockery be clean as a whistle and that you have no headaches about the maintenance we would suggest that you try out a product from this brand.

The main attraction besides durability is the Vario Flex rack system which can contort to allow any soiled dishes, mugs, spoons, or wok and frying pan. Efficient and compact are the words that come to mind when describing Bosch.

2. LG

Lucky Goldstar from South Korea is an MNC that manufactures everything from cell phones to chemicals. They are a much-appreciated brand in India since all of us at some time have used their phone or television.

LG is known for adapting its products to Indian conditions. The same holds for the dishwasher that it sells. It appeared entirely immune to the effect of hard water that destroys many home appliances.

Moreover, the direct drive motors used as part of LG dishwashers are superior to the competition. The age-old belt and pulley system is prone to damage, the same as the fan belt of a car. LG mounts the tub directly on the motor reducing the need for a transmission.

This is one of the many examples of thoughtful design and innovative engineering solutions that we found while testing the LG dishwasher.

Not to be trifled with is the vast dealer and service center network that LG has. If your machine stops working, you can be sure that there is a service center within a few kilometers.

However, the number of models they have on offer are low. This is because they are testing the waters and trying to figure out the needs of Indian consumers. 

Given their track record, you can be sure that in a few short years they would flood the market with a dozen models to suit every budget.

3. IFB

IFB is an Indian white goods company that has been manufacturing home appliances from the mid-70s. They were at one time the technological partner of Bosch in India. The core values of that partnership were quality and innovation, and that has survived. 

IFB is a top brand when it comes to buying an air conditioner, washing machines, microwaves and of late dishwashers. 

The biggest USP of the company is its trained, after-sales service staff. Since they only manufacture white goods and not electronics such as laptops and television, there is no confusion about what their service center offers. 

In the case of both Korean brands, there is a clear demarcation between service centers, some of which focus only on phones and laptops and others on consumer durables leading to much confusion.

IFB dishwasher has an innovative filter that is capable of converting hard water to soft water by removing diluted salts of calcium and magnesium. Hard water is not suitable for washing, and this feature helps IFB dishwashers gain an extra edge.

We reviewed the SX, and there is also a smaller VX with precisely the same design but smaller and more affordable. Sturdy and long-lasting, IFB is the perfect brand to watch for when you go appliance shopping.

4. Siemens

Another German engineering giant that has ventured into manufacturing home appliances in India, Siemens is a widely known name and makes exceptional quality electrical goods.

The brand holds out the promise of longevity and robust build. The Siemens that we tested could take almost any test we set it up for. 

The design of the interior is flexible and thoughtful. At a glance, you can tell that it is not something put together in a hurry to launch a product but the result of Teutonic meticulousness.

Like Bosch, it is slightly more expensive, but the best brands do command a premium. With a discreet yet functional design, Siemens dishwasher is perfectly suitable for the modern kitchen.

But the robust design was not the only thing we looked for. The build quality played a significant role, and Siemens has surpassed itself with long-lasting materials ideally suited for Indian households.

If you are looking for a machine that is flimsy and fancy, then Siemens is not for you. It is a workhorse that will plug away daily at the corner of your kitchen and produce the best results consistently. With a unique spraying system and an inbuilt heater, it is a beautiful machine from a renowned German manufacturer.

5. Voltas

Though the only model that Voltas has is a portable dishwasher, it held our attention for long enough to be included in the hall of fame.

The house of Tatas has been known for over a century and is a household name in India. The name is synonymous with the Indian engineering industry.

It is no huge surprise that Voltas has tried to pry the market open with a small dishwasher. But the smallness is only in size, not quality. Voltas brings the same attention to detail in designing the dishwasher as it does to air conditioners and washing machines.

The concept of a tabletop dishwasher is matchless, and Voltas has to be commended for it. Well manufactured and without any obvious flaws, the brand and the model was impressive in performance.

It is wonderful to note that Indian brands such as Voltas and IFB give able competition to American, German, and Korean rivals. It is not a mere matter of patriotism but the immense pride that we, as engineers and technological reviewers, have in noting the progress made by homegrown brands in the Indian dishwasher market.

Dishwashers in India – The Buyer’s Guide

It can be intimidating to buy a new dishwasher. Unlike an air conditioner or washing machine, you have most probably never seen one operate and cannot ask the advice of friends and family members. But what is the alternative? How long can your wife put up with the unpredictability of maids?

Times have changed, and so must the way we live. Hence no longer put off the task of buying a dishwasher. Read this comprehensive buying guide, and you will know everything that any layman must understand before walking into an appliance store.

1. How Do Dishwashers Work?

To understand the features of a dishwasher, you need to have a preliminary idea of how it works. Essentially it is a straightforward watertight machine that sprays hot, soapy water on soiled utensils.

They are front loading and have racks that allow you to put every type of dirty utensils or cookware inside.

Working of Dish Washer

1.1 Filling

The first step after you switch it on is filling. The dishwasher draws water from the tap automatically. Unlike a top-loading washing machine, you cannot use water stored in buckets but have at least 0.3 bars pressure of running water available. 

1.2 Washing

Water fills the basin or pool at the bottom. It is heated by a heater element to about 55-60° C. at the same time it is also mixed with detergent.

The soapy water is then pumped into spray arms. Each washer has at least 2 and often 3 arms placed below, above and to the side. The warm foamy water hits the dishes at very high pressure and washes away the grime.

It is not that freshwater is used for the next spray cycle. The dirty water is sucked out, filtered, heated again and sent back to be sprayed. If the water gets to be too warm, the heater switches off temporarily, but the suction and spraying cycle continues for about 45 minutes or so.

Dishwater temperature over time
Dishwater temperature over time

1.3 Rinsing

At the end of the primary wash cycle, the dishwasher empties the dirty water (and in the process makes a gurgling sound). The basin is refilled with fresh water for the rinse. The water is again heated, but depending on the manufacturer, the machine may or may not dispense more detergent at this stage.

Just like the main wash, the rinsing is repeated over and over again and may take 30-45 minutes.

1.4 Drying

At this stage, warm air is circulated over the washed dishes with the help of a fan. The dishes dry quickly, and it takes no more than 15 minutes.

In the end, the machine sounds a bell to let you know that the washing cycle is complete.

You must have noted that a dishwasher washes well but cannot precisely perform the rotary polishing action that our hands are capable of doing while washing. Therefore it is not really suitable for cleaning stained coffee mugs. But otherwise, the process works quite satisfactorily.

2. Types Of Dishwashers

Unlike washing machines, there are no front and top-loading variations. All dishwashers are front loading. The difference is whether they are built-in or free-standing.

  1. Built-in dishwashers are permanent installations. Usually, 60 cm or 24 inches wide they install beneath the countertop to provide an integrated look. But it is not suitable if you are going to change your address or have a transferable job. Since this appliance lasts quite long, the only possibility of buying a built-in machine arises if you are going to remain permanently at your current residence.
  2. The alternative is a free-standing machine. It is not that free-standing dishwashers have fewer features. But they have caster wheels and is usually hooked up to a sink. Of course, you could convert it to a built-in device with its own water supply and place it under a countertop. But there is no way to remove the caster wheels.
  3. The new emerging alternative is the tabletop dishwasher. These are light and weigh no more than 25 kg. They are meant to be placed on a table or counter. Many may prefer to put them on top of a front-loading washing machine and connect them to the same water supply outlet. They are compact and can be moved quite quickly.

3. Capacity

This is an essential factor since it not only determines the price but the size of the machine. In most homes, space is at a premium and hence buying a more substantial machine than you require is rather pointless.

If you read the description above, you would have noted that each dishwasher has a place setting number. Usually, full-sized machines are capable of 12 to 15 place settings.

What do we mean by that? A place setting consists of a dinner plate, a smaller plate, a soup bowl, a glass, a few assorted forks, knives, and spoons. Thus a 12 place setting machine has space for 12 times this description. That is a lot of space.

It is not that the configuration is fixed. Instead, it is an indication of how big the machine is much like washing machines are rated by kg of load.

You can easily change the configuration of most dishwashers by shifting and folding the racks and removing the tines and placing them in various slots.

Thus most can be folded enough to hold a wok, a frying pan, and a couple of plates, 2 glasses, and cutlery.

Within a few days of first use, you will have a better idea of how exactly the interior needs to be configured for your exact needs.

As a space-saving measure cups and mugs usually hang from hooks on the top. Hence look upon place setting number as a guide but inspect the washer thoroughly. Test out the racks. It is an expensive machine, and you should spend some time inspecting various models to find the one that is most flexible.

The main thing is to be aware of fitting pots and pans that you use since nearly all dishwashers have tolerably standard fixtures for cups and plates.

A small family of two can buy an 8 place setting dishwasher, but for three or more members a full-sized 12-15 place setting washer is preferable.

4. Wash Cycle

During the description of how a dishwasher works, we have seen that there are three parts to the cycle – washing, rinsing, and drying.

Some washers may have a pre-wash or pre-rinse feature. This essentially means that the plates are first cleaned with water at normal temperature in the hope that the biggest pieces of grime would fall off.

To these four parts, there are added various innovations by different manufacturers.

4.1 Quick Wash

The new modes include a Quick Wash option much like that found in washing machines. Of course, this mode would be only suitable for utensils that have been lightly used. You cant expect to wash crust off a frying pan in this mode but clean crockery and cutlery. The Quick Wash mode usually one where a far shorter version of the usual cycle is deployed and the drying period may be dispensed off altogether.

If a regular cycle lasts about 90 minutes to 120 minutes, then a Quick Wash lasts no longer than 30 minutes. 

4.2 Delayed Wash

This is handy since running water is not always available. When you complete dinner at night, if you find that there is not enough pressure to operate the washer just load the plates and utensils and set it to run at 7 AM the next morning when the roof tank would be full.

The machine would “wake up” and put itself through the paces and complete before you leave for office at 8:30 AM. This is just one example of how delayed wash is suitable. There may be many such instances when Delayed Wash comes in handy.

4.3 Rinse

It is a superfast mode for cleaning with water at room temperature and without added detergent. This is perfect for crockery that has been used for eating dry food such as namkeen etc.

4.4 Hygiene

The Hygiene mode heats water to about 80° C and uses it to clean pathogens. Exceptionally high water temperature is able to kill almost every bacteria present on the dishes. This is suitable for containers that held meat-based dishes. Salmonella and other bacteria infest meat that has been leftover and can be wiped out in this mode.

5. Auto Restart

This is exactly similar to the feature found in many washing machines. You load the dishwasher with lots of dirty plates and cups and 25 minutes into the cycle the power blacks out.

That is a large headache in most parts of this country. Since a dishwasher consumes massive amounts of power (between 1,000-2,000 watts), it is not really possible to drive it using an inverter or even a home generator.

That is why the Auto Restart feature is a must-have. It enables the machine to remember the stage where it stopped and start again from that point. Of course, it is probably going to have to heat the water again, and that would add a few minutes to the completion time, but it is better to be delayed slightly than have to begin all over again.

6. Door Safety Lock

Most homes have a toddler or a young busybody who is extremely curious and always getting into trouble. Children have an uncanny knack of pulling open doors – especially doors behind which there is a humming sound, and strange lights are flickering on and off.

It is important that safety is your first concern when buying any home appliance. Opening the door of a dishwasher would have a catastrophic effect, the least of which would be 10 liters of dirty water flooding your kitchen. Water at a high temperature can scald the youngest member of your family. For this reason, always buy a dishwasher that has a childproof lock.

In the long run, you will end up thanking yourself for your foresight.

The same goes for dials. If the wash program selection panel is tamper-proof by children, it means the machine would not go into a long washing cycle in the middle of a quick clean mode since someone who is very young and very curious flipped the wrong buttons and scampered away.

7. Auto Salt Refill Indicator

Many dishwashers use salt to make the water soft. Hard water is not really useful for cleaning since it cannot form foam.

Dishwasher salt is a particularly refined variety of common salt that is used to convert hard water to soft. There is a dispenser tap that lets out a small amount of salt at the start of the wash cycle. An indicator that lights up to show that there is not enough salt in the reservoir is a useful but not essential feature.

8. Auto Detergent Indicator

Dishwashers use tablets or pods containing detergent. Just like you need a low salt indicator, a low detergent indicator also is very useful.

9. No Water Indicator

The lack of a steady water supply is a perennial problem in India. We advise that you select a dishwasher that lets you know through a beep or alarm that there is not enough water. This is a feature that is very essential as a washer requires a minimum of 0.3 bars of water pressure to draw water automatically.

10. Inverter Motor

Since washing machines are expensive, the models that have been sold over the past two years all have inverter motors.

Inverter motors can vary their speeds depending on the load. The older constant speed motors ran at the same RPM or revolutions per minute. This led to wastage of electricity because often you are not going to use the motor at its full capacity but only 60%.

At the same time, the motors have become brushless and have fewer moving parts. Apart from the Voltas and BPL machines featured above all the rest have inverter motors.

Direct-Drive is now a standard feature too. The tub is mounted on the motor and not using a belt and pulley. Inverter motors usually use a direct drive feature.

11. Adequate Number Of Filters

Plates are dirty and grimy. That is why you purchased a dishwasher. But have you wondered what happens to the grime? If it is flushed into the drain then six months down the line the pipes would choke. Check the type of outlet filters the washing machine has. Most allow semi-liquid debris to wash away and collect bigger particles in a mesh.

A filter is also crucial so that rodents from the sewer which are attracted by the smell of food do not climb into the dishwasher. 

To sum it up, you have to check not only how well the washer works but also how it lets the scum out and protects itself against rodent attacks.

12. Build And Design

Dishwashing machines are either made of stainless steel or have an iron body with a white powder coat paint.

Inspect the machine carefully to find if it will last you at least a decade. The hinges, knobs, racks, switches must all be robustly built and be able to stand thousands of days of work.

Never hurry through the buying process but take measured decisions.

Most of the machines are very sleek and have hidden controls. It is important that the small trap door to these controls is also durable.

13. Price

Last but definitely not least considering the investment you have to make. Most dishwashers are priced between INR 30,000 to 50,000. But that is a large spread. 

Bosch and LG are really expensive while IFB, Faber, and Siemens are less so.

It is good to have a budget of at least INR 35,000 when you set out to buy a dishwasher. Of course, you could opt for the budget model that BPL offers at a far lesser price.

Verdict

All things considered, the Bosch 12 Place Setting Dishwashers, Free Standing, Silver INOX, SMS66GI01I came out a winner in our tests. All were winners, but we had to choose a first among equals. Premium German quality at a reasonable INR 43,000, could we honestly ask for more? The most advanced features and the flawless performance of the Eco Silence motor is what swayed our judgment.

There is also the fact that there is a 10-year warranty on the chassis. That is quite a promise from a company. Besides, it has all the bells and whistles you could hope for.

Our runner up was the Whirlpool 14 Place Settings Dishwasher (PowerClean Pro-WFO3O33 DLX IN, Inox). Made in Europe was a tag that we just could not ignore. Besides, Whirlpool has a huge service network in India because of its domination of the consumer durables market.

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